Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Still Liminal After All These Years.

This was/is to be the year that I stepped through the threshold, going from one state of being to the next. My baby went off to college nearly 5 hours from home, and the older daughter, having started work on her Ph.D. has set up household a mere 2 hours away. A major piece of magical work, a work of nearly 6 years duration, is successully and well finished. And, in a matter of months, I will have my 50th birthday.

I have great plans for this year, and the years to come, and I've been more than ready to get started on them. At the beginning of the year I set my first goal; to attend Sacred Spaces, in Maryland. I've wanted to attend for several years now, but being mother to a resident child (especially a child who, despite being a native New Jersian, does not drive), and the expenses of having that teenager home, kept me from attending.

In one form or another, I "know" most of the presenters at Sacred Spaces 2011 (that's one of the advantages of being around for a while), and what a group to hang out with! Judika Illes, Jason Miller, Diana Paxson, Ketzirah Carly, just to list the people that I know, or I've chattted with. I investigated hotel costs and transportation and started putting the funds aside. I started thinking about how I was going to break the news to DH, that I was going off to have fun without him.

And then...the supply list arrived for a film photography class that my younger daughter is taking. A list of items that are not available at the school bookstore where she has a generous scholarship. A list of items, that, when purchased, swallowed up the hotel and train funds.

So. Still Mommy, first. I will get to Sacred Spaces (and similar events) in the future. This week, I will stay home.

Still Liminal.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Long afterward, Oedipus, old and blinded, walked the roads.
He smelled a familiar smell. It was the Sphinx.
Oedipus said, "I want to ask one question. Why
didn't I recognize my mother?"
"You gave the wrong answer" said the Sphinx.
"But that was what made everything possible" said Oedipus.
"No" she said. "When I asked, What walks on four legs in
the morning, two at noon, and three, in the evening, you answered, Man.
You didn't say anything about Woman."
"When you say Man," said Oedipus, "You include women, too.
Everyone knows that."
She said, "That's what you think."

(A portion of "Myth" by Muriel Rukeyser)

Assuming that one's own cultural biases are universal is dangerous. That holds for whether you are dealing with humans, systems created by humans, or non-human entities. And just because something has become enshrined in teachings and literature, does not make that something so.

For the past several years, I posted a poem on this blog for Valentines Day (usually John Donne). This year, I did not, although the reason had to do with my being between desktop computer systems. (Nettie the netbook is great for reading email or facebook, but for writing, research or juggling several open windows, I really prefer a full sized system.)
So, instead, a post-Valentines day, and Happy Birthday to Susan B. Anthony, poetry post.