Tuesday, June 28, 2016

What is a footnote?

" What is the purpose of a footnote or endnote? Footnotes and endnotes are both ways to add clarifying information into a document. They provide important details with which the reader may be unfamiliar. They often save the reader from looking up unfamilar words, people, places or sources." - I Googled

The unfolding saga of Beatrix Blunt continues to keep my imagination and love for Hawaiian history alive and well. My writing folds in the footnote and I have a lot of fun with what gets included in these important details. If you have been fooled into believing being a footnote in life is a bad thing ... I'd think again. Sometimes the clarification and details ARE THE SMALL PRINT, and there is the marrow of the fish bones; the best juice is there!

Beatrix Blunt reflects on the hidden meanings in the most recent segment entitled 'Kaona.' Learn more about Bea's partner, Leslie Mills and see how footnotes fill in a story. 

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Our relationship with Mahina, Earth's Moon

"Tonight – June 19, 2016 – it’s solstice eve and the moon you’ll see shining near Saturn and the star Antares may look full. The 2016 June full moon and solstice fall on the same date, June 20. But, for the Americas, the June 19 moon is closer to the crest of the moon’s full phase than the moon June 20. Although the full moon and solstice happen at the same instant all around the world, the clock reading differs by time zone. At U.S. time zones, the moon turns precisely full on June 20 at 7:02 a.m. EDT, 6:02 a.m. CDT, 5:02 a.m. MDT and 4:02 a.m. PDT.So, if you’re in the Americas, as we are, the moon you’ll see during the night tonight is closer to full than tomorrow night’s solstice full moon.The June solstice comes on June 20, 2016 at 6:34 p.m. EDT, 5:34 p.m. CDT, 4:34 p.m. MDT and 3:34 p.m. PDT...For the entire world, this year’s June full moon is somewhat unusual in that it’s the fourth of four full moons in one season. Normally, there are only three full moons in a season. But when a season harbors four full moons, the third of these four full moons is often called a Blue Moon." - Earthsky.org
Today, we are woven into the four full moons of Kaulana Mahina the Hawaiian Moon Calendar. If we name her phase last night it would have been her gown of Akua that we saw, Later tonight in the deeply shrouded Salish sky the Hoku Moon will lighten the heavens. Fattening as my Ancestors would have observed, Mahina the moon deserved to be recognized in her four nights of ripening. She is a woman maturing, makuahine o'o and each cycle each malama she matures to fully ripe before she seems to disappear into the slim twist of Hilo, barely visible in a deep dark heaven. There are many ways to name our reality, and those ways change over time.

As Mahina ripens into her fullness, the door of our Quonset hut is wide open. The sun is newly risen the air of the forest is cool caressing my bare feet and ankles. It is quiet now, no birdsong and my fingers peck a rhythm of words into sentences. There is much to consider as the Sagittarius Full Moon, Blue Moon and Summer Solstice marks itself on life here. Here, where I live now. Ah, there. The song of Robin or Sparrow I am not awake alone. How lucky for me.

Yesterday I sat behind the wheel of our faithful old car, Scout the Subaru. I was waiting for Pete who was inside the big gray house at the top of the moss edged stone driveway. A skillful and generous friend and practitioner of Somatics was working with him/on him. Lucky Pete. Lucky us. Earlier in the month old habits and misuses of muscles stopped Pete in his usual tracks. A'ole, no more at least for now. The pain and the disability was a marker. A stop sign.

So yesterday I sat behind the wheel of our faithful old car, waiting to be Pete's driver. A shift in kuleana I was glad to assume. Lucky us. Outside the rain washed over the windows and dark green painted body and with some effort I could see the heads of people riding in their golf carts on the manicured lawns of the golf course. Knowing Pete's appointment would be lengthy I brought a new library book, and needlework to busy myself. Keola Beamer and George Kahamoku were singing sweet island music on the car's c.d. player as I pulled the needle and waxed thread into tiny 'invisible' stitches. I am appliqueing an old favorite piece of cloth onto a new brown linen jumper I plan to wear to a celebration next weekend.

The stitching of old cloth to new is close work. My eyes were tired after thirty minutes, and though I try to relax my shoulders when I do needlework my intensity shows up any way. I put the needle (still threaded) into a spot in the jumper and folded the work up. Within seconds my cellphone rang. I recognized the name of my friend, and sister moon lover was calling. She was on the line for some thoughts about this Sagittarius Moon. "The Moon is right up my alley," I laughed a full belly rumble. We had a good chuckle over that. How wonderful to be known among your community as the Moon Lady.

Astrologers and astronomers have lots of thoughts, predictions, observations and a fire moon ritual to prepare for this full moon. Here are a few links that might interest you.




Tonight Pete is having a night out with a friend at a local Chinese restaurant where they will eat Chinese food and watch the basketball playoffs. Me and the birds are at home in the woods, and after a full day of living life on this Salish Island, the breeze is once again caressing my barefeet and bare legs. Their songs -- those birds are sweet sounds that I appreciate.

By the clock it is not yet 5:00 P.M. Sparrow thinks the open door means open house. Towhee agrees. They're both in the Quonset until they squabble over the crumbs we've dropped on the floor and flitter out the door and on their wings away.

Tonight is Hoku Moon. Mahina will rise before the sun sets. Both of them visible in the heaven at the edge of a full day of sun. I may dress for a little drive out of the forest and head to the muliwai to catch the moon rise. This relationship I have with Mahina is a solid one. I malama her, I care for her and care about the way she cares for me and us.

The Moon Mahina connects me to my na'au, my gut my roots across the great Moana nui the ocean. When we thought there was no place for us years ago, Mahina knew we were wrong. She cared for us when we thought we were all alone. It was just that we were in the early stages of becoming ki'inoho, at home in our bodies, again. It's a cycle the moon teaches each malama (month) time and time again. Lucky us.

That theme ki'inoho, hou, to become a homebody, again it has a sweet ring to it like birdsong. I think I'm onto something I can count on. Nice place to be as the moon ripens.

E'o Mahina

Thursday, June 16, 2016

A skillful writer knows that he or she must tell two stories at once ...

"A skillful writer knows that he or she must tell two stories at once: the surface tale, and a deeper story encoded within the tale's symbolic language. The magical tropes of fantasy, rooted as they are in world mythology, come freighted with meaning on a metaphoric level. A responsible writer works with these symbols consciously and pays attention to both aspects of the story...I believe that those of us who use the magic of words professionally should remember how powerful stories can be -- for children especially, but also for adults -- and take responsibility for the tenor of whatever dreams or nightmares we're letting loose into the world. This is particularly true in fantasy, where the tools of our trade include the language, symbolism and archetypal energies of myth. These are ancient, subtle, potent things, and they work in mysterious way." -"Working with Words" Myth & Moor, Terri Windling 

"We, as Native Hawaiians, must continue to unveil the knowledge of our ancestors. Let us interpret for ourselves who our ancestors are, how they thought, and why they made certain decisions. In the process, we treat them with honor, dignity, love, and respect--whether they be akua, ali'i, or kanaka--because they are our 'ohana, our family...Entering the world of ancestral memory requires a certain mindset. Take time to enjoy and understand each phrase or line before going on. Remember, this gift took many lifetimes to wrap. Don't be in a hurry to unwrap it and become frustrated in doing so. The meaning and force of the ancestral knowledge will unfold precept upon precept, and each has a code to inspire you on to the next level."  Preface, Ka Honua Ola, Pualani Kanaka'ole Kanahele

""We are not in danger of exceeding the boundaries of language, nor are we prisoners of language in any dire way. I am much more concerned with my place within the context of my language. This, I think, must be a principle of storytelling. And the storyteller's place within the context of his language must include both a geographical and mythic frame of reference. Within that frame of reference is the freedom of infinite possibility. The place of infinite possibility is where the storyteller belongs." - an interview with N. Scott Momady

"Words are intrinsically powerful. And there is magic in that. Words come from nothing into being. They are created in the imagination and given life on the human voice. You know, we used to believe -- and I am talking about all of us, regardless of our ethnic backgrounds -- in the magic of words. The Anglo-Saxon who uttered spells over his field so that the seeds would come out of the ground on the sheer strength of his voice, knew a good deal about language, and he believed absolutely in the efficacy of language." -N. Scott Momady

The words are those of writers I admire, the photos are those I captured on our digital camera. Do we own these expressions? I wonder about that, the idea of 'owning.'

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Ho'oulu 'Aina and Hope

"Ho'oulu 'Aina addresses the health needs of Kalihi Valley (on the Island of O'ahu) by strengthening the connection between people and land. Through four interwoven program areas, the community comes together to create a 100 acre upland resource of forest, food, knowledge, spirituality, and health activity. As we restore this land to health and productivity, we learn that healing is reciprocal." - Ho'oulu 'Aina

" The transformation of despair into hope is alchemical work, creative work. And what all transformations have in common, writes Rebecca Solnit, "is that they begin in the imagination.To hope is to gamble," she says. "It's to bet on the future, on your desires, on the possibility that an open heart and uncertainty are better than gloom and safety. To hope is dangerous, and yet it is the opposite of fear, for to live is to risk. I say all this to you because hope is not like a lottery ticket you can sit on the sofa and clutch, feeling lucky. I say this because hope is an ax you break down doors with in an emergency; because hope should shove you out the door, because it will take everything you have to steer the future away from endless war, from annihilation of the earth's treasures and the grinding down of the poor and marginal. Hope just means another world might be possible, not promised, not guaranteed. Hope calls for action; action is impossible without hope." - a quote from Rebecca Solnit on Terri Windling's blog Myth and Moor
All day long the rain has fallen. Heavy. Sudden. Piercing. Near hail. The temperature has shifted from an early summer seventy-eight to forty nine. The weather, the elemental gods Lono, Kane they are not blind to the smallness of spirit in humans who are bred on smallness and fear. 'Aue the tragic killing in Orlando. 'Aue, 'aue, ho'ouwe kalani!  Oh, oh what cause for the heavens to cry!

Very early this morning I woke to make time to write one more segment in the medicine story that is uprooting old issues of shame and fear. So deep are some of these issues one life-time may not be enough to ferret them out. But, it will not be for lack of trying. I have worn teeth to prove what an aging ferret's teeth are like. In this growing medicine story the character Uncle Moon wrote a letter to a tiny girl on her first birthday. In green ink, written in a flowing script he wrote:

My Tutu always told me patience is something no man can take from you. So this is how you and me learn about patience. I write, we read. I write, we read. Then you learn to write, we read. Ho'omana

In between my piecing of thoughts into story, I diverted and went to one of my favorite art-nurturing watering holes: Myth and Moor. The quote above describing Hope was part of the beautiful offering left there by Terri Windling.

There. There was something to build into my writer's imagination, and medicine story. I felt the push, the shove that must have been what got me out of a warm bed, and into the woods where already the puddles of rain were deep enough to soak my little shoes clear through. The medicine story being written pulls on threads and roots from so many directions: a mele a song whose meaning has been variously interpreted over more than a hundred years; a name that has laid down waiting, waiting for what? Maybe, the names wait for the next waves or rainfalls filled with hope.

A few days ago, I received a message and an attachment from our son who lives on O'ahu. A second podcast produced by Hui Mauli Ola recorded an interview with a wonderful wahine o Kalihi a woman of Kalihi Valley on the Island of O'ahu. We know this wahine Puni Jackson. When Pete and I were newly unended and empty of hope because we no longer had the safety of 'a home' to live in, our son, Christopher Kawika, invited us to met and visit with Puni Jackson. At the time (2007) Puni and her kane had just moved onto the land and the project called Ho'oulu 'Aina was newly hanau. The land was wild, raw and wet! Though we could not stay, we were welcomed and felt the safety of this pu'uhonua.

Nearly ten years after, we listen to this podcast and heard the journey of hope and healing in Puni's words about the healing process of Ho'oulu 'Aina. The YouTube presentation that begins this post is also Puni Jackson (2015) speaking about the personal messages that needed to be transformed, with hope. Through that listening I learned more about the young woman of forty, mother to her fifth keiki, and example of aloha who gave us hope when we most needed it.

"Hope just means another world might be possible, not promised, not guaranteed. Hope calls for action; action is impossible without hope." - Rebecca Solnit

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Auhea au?

Where am I? I'm pouring what energy I have into story. Here.

These flowers 
have a part 
in the myth-making.

Friday, June 3, 2016

New Moon in Gemini, June 4, 2016

lassoed the theme I needed for  New Moon in Gemini

Tomorrow the Moon is New in the air sign of Gemini at 14 degrees. It's been a tough time here, and I wasn't really sure where this was heading. My attitude was stinking, and my thinking (Gemini stuff) was not hitting the hit notes or the high ground.

But something happened this afternoon. Pete and I drove to the beach hoping for a swim but the wind and water had other plans. We stayed for awhile: Pete up against a beautiful downed former tree, and I stepped into the wavy water barefoot, and up to my shins. "Cold." I had my swim suit on, and a long sleeve shirt with my flopping straw hat. The quiet and the Salish Sea calmed me. The water was clear and there were gifts there: a beautiful piece of Moon Snail looked up at me with her shiny brown face; a shard of sand dollar in a sun-like shape; two other sand dollars (all absent of occupants) with piecing missing.  Thank you! If I had forgotten, I remember now ... sorry for my forgetfulness it is one of things I work at.

Forgetfulness is not just one of things a human can chock up to the elder years. Yes, we forget things, but somethings slip through the cracks because I am too busy being bitter. As Pete and I turned into our long driveway through the woods he said "Yes, I'm going to the high school graduation next week end." A very important young man we met four years ago will be graduating.

"That's nice," I said and I meant it. I felt that subtle and powerful shift. There was room for something.

"That's my theme," Pete said. I wasn't sure what he meant by that.

"I am trying to be a nice person that way I don't have to worry about being paranoid delusional," he's been running into that a lot. Pete is one of the people my astrologer Elsa P. wrote about in a recent post. Pete is one of those folks with Gemini at birth (Natal position) at 14 degrees. Tomorrow's New Moon at 14 degrees will give him, and others in his tribe, a break.

 As for the other mutable signs, they might feel a bit jealous of Gemini at this time.  That's too bad; 14 Gemini has had a tough year with Saturn and Neptune bearing down.  It's about time they were dealt an ace. - ElsaElsa Free Newsletter
Where is the New Moon in your natal chart, got a theme to latch to?