Beginner's Heart

Beginner's Heart


the wind, ventifacts & advice to a young teacher ~

I’ve been trying to spend time outside each day, even if it’s only to sit and watch the birds jostle each other at the various feeders. And I’ve been thinking about wind — always a presence in Oklahoma.

If I’d had this word yesterday, it certainly would have been in yesterday’s post. The word is ventifact. While the precise term refers to stones shaped by the wind, so many things are artifacts of the wind. Certainly Tree, from yesterday’s post, is :).

But the smooth polyhedron of this rose-coloured rock appeals to me. What did it look like before water or the wind cut it loose from its mother boulder, and wind pushed it around? Was it rougher? Larger? How substantial a change shaped and polished it?

Obviously another metaphor, but one I like as well as Tree. The idea that even when I feel most isolated, I once belonged to something larger than myself — what I call The Web :) — and that the forces in my life I often feel beset by may well be making me more beautiful… Well, that’s another kind of elemental magic. I’m not beset. I’m a ventifact in the making :).

It’s a thought that could only occur to me in the combination of sitting outside — and a long-time familiarity w/ rocks :) — and thinking about words, seeing them as physically connected to real life. Metaphors. Which is why, when one of my favourite former students wrote me not long ago, her heart cracked open by life and love and the growing pain of the two together, here is what I told her:

GO OUTSIDE! Take your favourite journal, a coloured marker or pen. A GOLD marker or pen. A set of coloured pencils or crayons. Find water. Sit by it. Take something special to eat, and a thermos or go-cup of something hot. Even if it’s 111 [yesterday's temperature :(]. Take your inner child for a picnic. When you get there, just sit. In your car, on a bench, on a blanket on the grass. Then draw, write, doodle, colour. And think: big sky mind. The clouds come, the clouds go. But the sky remains.  And the ventifacts beneath it…

 



  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Army Combat Vet

    Frustrating when web site folks don’t verify their work and make sure it works properly… not the article that should be there. Yuk :(

  • brittongildersleeve

    I’m so sorry! Must be a URL glitch :)

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Molly

    This may be an interesting article, but this does not seem to be ” 10 things even atheists can love about church.”

Previous Posts

form, poetry, and the empty cup
I spent the day researching obscure poetic forms.  And it was enormous fun -- thinking about what to pour into those elegant white cups of structure. Along the way, I wrote this poem for my sisters (the least structured of women). But we'll get to the poem in a moment. Because what's important i

posted 3:41:38pm Apr. 18, 2014 | read full post »

poetry, structure, and creative beginner's heart
Last night, discussing structure and writing with my elder son, I said I couldn't write w/ too much structure. That writing is -- for me -- a discovery process. Structure, I told him, can actually kill my ide

posted 3:03:47pm Apr. 16, 2014 | read full post »

what a difference a day makes (and other ways I wish I was like my grandson)
My grandson burnt his hands Sunday. Not horribly, but badly enough that he cried inconsolably for hours. Today? He's his usual sunny self: slapping the Cheerios on the highchair

posted 3:01:12pm Apr. 15, 2014 | read full post »

in the flash of a moment
My grandson hurt himself today. Not horribly, but bad enough that he's been crying for two+ hours. On a lovely spring day -- temps in the lower 70s -- he was on the deck w/ his folks, crawling happily around

posted 4:45:55pm Apr. 13, 2014 | read full post »

the poetry of every day
It's easy to forget that every day holds poetry. Especially if you're hectic: packing, moving, cleaning a new house, unpacking... Soothing a disolocated dog, holding a curious baby. Eating out of cartons while you locate the dishes and pans. All of this can make you forget the whole point of the

posted 2:46:45pm Apr. 12, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.