My voice froze in me, as it easily does if I let it. My writing journey has been a long, spiritual thaw for me. But when I don’t share because I fear it’s not good enough, or even stupid, it’s like my voice became very small. Stuck in my throat.
But I’m also not sure what I want to share. My life has changed in strange, wonderful ways since I moved from Norway to Slovenia. And there is a different kind of magic here that I’m learning to listen to and interpret. A glittering, gentle presence. The wild stormy sky and dark forest at my doorstep is no more. But in their stead is a warmth that I’m drawing into my bones. Friends and beauty, and a brighter sun that rises early, even in winter.
I’ve been working on getting up early, in the moments before dawn. I’ve been drawn to spirituality and the divine since I was a little girl. I would speak to God as a child because it made me feel safe. The stars were gods gazing back at me. The sky spread out before me was a great, friendly voice that spoke of love. And in the darkness before dawn, I want to listen to the quiet voice in my heart, and light a candle at the feet of the Goddess. I want to be a guided by a clear, steady knowing. I want to be free of the clouds of doubt and worry. There’s a voice ringing through my soul and I want to follow its song.
I want to be a priestess of the Goddess.
That’s why I’m writing a novel about a priestess, and writing my way through old grief. I’m dissecting the path I’m so drawn to step onto, and that also leaves me confused. I need a way to express the thoughts and feelings that move through me. Images of beauty that I wish were real. It would be wonderful to spend time in a white temple by a dark lake. White mountains at my back. To sing worship to the Goddess in everything that I do. To have magic at my fingertips.
It’s taking too long. Writing this book. It’s a spiral journey in ever tightening circles and there’s a lot to overcome within me to be able to put words to the page. It’s a wonderful, magical path when I stop putting pressure on myself. It’s so easy to want to be more than I am, right now, move quickly forward to be worthy to spend time doing the things I love. It makes me very anxious when something is taking so long. Doubt fills me. But I have to write. There’s a clear, almost stern voice telling me there’s no other way. A strong core of stone at my heart. My thoughts are fretful, anxious wings beating against stone, and I know, deep down, that I’m safe.
The world is all white outside my window. White upon white. The snow continues to fall, and I find myself dreaming of a white Christmas. Wishing you a beautiful Advent time. May the light shine in the darkness. A candle forever lit in your heart.
Autumn is here, slowly, gently taking hold of the trees, the sky. The air that I breathe. I love it so much. It’s a time of warm sweaters, of fire and frost. I have a candle burning on my desk as I write this. More candles now. More light in the coming darkness.
I have dreams that I keep in my heart, though I know the world is a fragile place and anything might happen, might change. But what would I do? Without dreams?
I leave my window open as I write this, happy that I no longer have to close it against the heat, against the noise of construction work down below. The world is falling silent.
I brought with me a picture from Norway, that I bought at one of those cozy, soulful cafes I visited. It sits on my desk now, an image of an autumn lake, dark trees around it, stormy skies.
Lately, I’ve been looking forward to mornings because I feel the best then. My energy tends to run out later in the day. But mornings are fresh and gentle, and I walk more softly through the rooms of my apartment, drinking tea. I like to write and dream, and that too feels like stepping between rooms, between worlds. I try to listen to that quiet voice inside, which needs so much silence to be heard. And a lot of the time it’s telling me something unexpected, something that is wonderful and yet hard to believe. Peace it whispers, but I’m not sure I can let go and believe in it. There are so many things to worry about…
I’ve been reading Deep in the Far Away, which I recommend to anyone who loves beauty, love, magic. This book is very special because as I leaf through it I find flowers between its pages, and messages of love, which I touch, hold onto, like beautiful wishes. I felt a bit teary eyed and stressed out one night, and curled up in bed with this beautiful book, and felt much better. Comforted. I think we can bring some light into the world through the things we create.
Rain and snow
I’m listening to the rain, singing, singing outside my window, above the mountains. The forest is veiled in mist. I want it to keep raining for a while longer. Somehow it protects me from the world, from myself, wraps me in my own quiet space. It’s like coming back to myself. The sun can ask so much, too much sometimes. Though soon enough, I will long for that too. The other evening I was surprised to see snow on the most distant mountains. They shone white in the gathering darkness, and I was alone in the streets, watching them. I stood there for a time, leaning into that distant cold, feeling it coming closer, closer.
I become more aware of the light, as the dark season falls slowly, like a curtain onto the world. I step outside and watch the sky, the sun shining through the mist. But I’m not so worried about it here. I don’t have to cling to the light, not knowing when I will see it again. When the sun will show itself again. Here in this place, the sun is warmer, stronger, a more constant presence. I’m not sure why I long for darkness, the cold northern wind. In my mind, it makes no sense. I tell myself it makes no sense. I suppose I will always be longing for something else, no matter where I am.
But the more time I spend in nature, the more walks I take, the more I soften, fall in love with this place all over again. Yesterday I walked in the last bit of sun before it hid behind the mountains. The air was cold, the trees golden at their tips. I sat by the river and saw light reflected in it, saw that black and white bird dive into the water, come back up, dive in again. It would jump onto a rock, dance a bit, then throw itself back into the river.
I continued walking past sun flowers, moon colored flowers, blushing apples on low branches. I’m held in quiet beauty, here in this place. It eases my longing for the north, though when I found a side path my heart beat with longing, rising towards those dark trees, the darker mountains beyond, the forest. But it only took me to the river, and I could not reach deeper into the woods.
Last night a storm blew outside my apartment, howled in the trees, throwing rain against my windows. I loved it. I sat safely on my bed, reading, writing, listening. Thunder shook the sky. Lightning flashed. Slovenia has the best storms.
I’m home in Slovenia now, after a beautiful trip to Norway to visit family, to visit those high mountains and shining lakes. I ached to breathe that fresh, clear air, to be part of that wild sky I love so much. It rained heavily when we left to return to Slovenia, which made it easier to let go and cross the ocean to Denmark. I was weary too. It’s good to be back.
We drove along many narrow, winding roads in Norway, and I sat with a hand to my heart because all that beauty hurt me in a wonderful way. It felt like my heart was opening, like a creaking door.
There are mountains, forests, and lakes. Rushing waterfalls. There’s always a lake close to the road, shimmering in the sunlight, or the ocean itself, tucked between fjords.
We slept in a tent in the high mountain, where there are no trees, only moss and heather, and dark lakes. I was cold there and woke up in the night to see a billion stars above me, the silence of the mountain pressing against me, the sound of falling water trickling into my ears. We had camped close to a large patch of cotton grass which shone like drops of snow in the morning. I walked into the sun to warm myself and gathered a bouquet of them. They have such a simple, gentle beauty to them, and remind me of my childhood at our cabin.
I also gathered heather to bring with me home. I love its purple flowers, its honey scent, its fairy magic. It’s one of the loveliest plants I know. At times I felt I could hardly breathe going for walks, especially in the mountain, – there was just so much to take in. I became very silent, falling to my knees in worship…I curled up on the moss by a glittering lake, letting it fill my ears, my eyes, breathing in sweetness, the warm sun. I only wish there had been more time to walk further along those trails, to see where the next bend would lead.
I’m weary and full of happy memories, and some difficult ones too, which tends to go into the mix; But I’m learning to see moments of difficulties like gifts dropped into my lap, for me to hold and turn over, look at more closely. I try to remember to listen and to learn, even though it can be painful.
I felt the beginning of autumn in Norway. I saw how the birch leaves were turning yellow, how the mountain grass was a burnt bronze, and how dark the lakes seemed. I brought home teas and honey, so I will remember.
Even now I ache for the wilderness I knew, the darkness that seemed at the edge of everything. Maybe one day I will return to it and stay. But for now, I’m here, in a different kind of beauty. A gentler beauty, kinder with more flowers. And yet….and yet I feel I’ve left part of my heart behind, and I try to remember that winter is coming and that Slovenia is a better place to face it. Less dark, with sunny days closer together. It was in May this year that I felt such a deep longing to be in Norway, leaving me more restless the further along we went into summer, into the simmering heat. I needed the north then, to breathe colder air, to walk up into the mountains….I just haven’t found any place that makes me feel the same as those mountains, high up, close to the sky. The water there taste like starlight, and there are glaciers, shining blue in the distance. Kings and queens of ice and cold. But it is very lovely to be back in my own place, to rest. I feel refreshed and very tired. I want to listen. I sense I went through a story, a chapter in a book that makes up my own life, and I need to sort through all the lessons given to me and to know what to do next.
I wonder as I write this if what I long for the most are places almost untouched by people. Places untamed. I love the mountains because there’s almost no one there, only a few cabins, sometimes a road. You can feel nature speaking to you in its great, powerful voice, not tired out by people. In a way this makes me sad, because it makes me notice how polluted some places are, how beaten down. This is what I mean by wilderness. That place that is still brimming with spirits, magic, life. And at the same time, I feel that maybe I shouldn’t write this. There are so many lovely places. Places that touch my heart and fill me with beauty. But the mountain is different, – it shakes my soul.
Maybe the things we grew up with has a special place in our hearts.
I will go to sleep now, listening to the sound of rain and hopefully thunder. I returned home to mist and darkening mountains, which felt like friends. There are so many thoughts and feelings running through me. So many things have happened. I’m ready to welcome Autumn, dark and silence. Good night 🙂
And this, because it gives voice to the northern mountains, their chill and cold, and power
Spring is gathering outside, filling the world with wildflowers. The other day I stood in the forest, a light, cool spring rain singing through the trees. It was just beautiful. I can still hear it, feel it, my face turned towards the sky.
There’s blue star shaped flowers on the ground, growing in blankets among the trees. I know this flower, if only through song. I know its white cousin very well because it filled the fields behind our house where I grew up, but the blue one never showed itself. It grew in other parts of Norway, (now I’ve moved to Slovenia). But my dad would sing a song about it, and I also sang it to him one day while we were walking by the river when he was feeling depressed. I wanted to remind him of beauty, of magic, of joy.
It’s a simple song. About someone receiving a bouquet of these blue flowers from a young girl in a forest. In return, he gives her a few coins to buy some chocolate, but as she happily skips away from him, he reflects that he has never before received such a rich gift, and in truth, it was she who was good towards him, not the other way around.
My dad would sing me different songs while growing up. One was about a girl living in a forest.
“I know a little girl, yes I know her so well, I know a little girl north in the woods.”
And my mom would sing about a girl who asks the southern wind to not touch the veil on her hatbecause she needs to look beautiful for her beloved.
“And the girl asked the southern wind, don’t touch the veil on my hat. It needs to be nice and clean for my beloved. With a hat with a veil and silken straw. A dress with lace along the neck, two white shoes with ribbons, and socks as clear as day.”
Silly little songs that I still remember, if only the first sentence of it. Hearing them again always brings me back to my childhood. Do you know songs like that?
I wanted to write about Iceland sooner. But then I got sick and life carried me along with it. What I will remember most is how it felt to return to the wild north. To be in a place somewhat untamed by people. The houses in the countryside seemed almost lost, swallowed uplike they didn’t quite belong among the fields and mountains. And I loved all the streams and rivers and small lakes that you could drink from. The fresh air, and the blue light of the mornings, and the smell of snow. I loved the steam that would rise up here and there from the ground. It was such a strange sight. And I liked seeing the small Icelandic horses along the road. The place was full of them.
I felt at home in Iceland. In Reykjavik, I went for a long walk along the ocean in the heavy snow that had fallen overnight. I always have to go to the ocean when I can. I like to stand and watch the horizon, to feel what might lie beyond it, and listen to the distant voice of the sea.
But now I’m back in Slovenia and waiting for the Spring Equinox. Everything is coming back to life. Can you feel it? Or perhaps autumn is coming to where you are, and you feel things falling away? Wishing you beauty, love, light.
We had a small storm today, here in Reykjavik. I spent the morning and early afternoon indoors, growing restless, watching the trees wave outside my window. And then I felt it call to me, that wind, and the sun came through the rain and so I went outside. I walked to the sea and watched it tossing around, silver gray and white and endless. And some words came to me out there, that I wanted to write down. I’ve felt pretty empty lately.
I had to be careful to not fall over in the wind, and I turned back, headed to a small coffee shop. I like watching people, without interacting, but just observing life and things happening around me. There are several people with computers, some reading the newspaper, most just talking over a beer, over soup and sandwiches. I order lemongrass peppermint tea and a slice of chocolate cake with cream.
I’m enjoying my last few days here in Iceland. I know I will blink and it will be gone.
Here I am, back again. Writing from Slovenia. My husband and I moved from Norway to Slovenia, and then again within Slovenia. We’re now in a small, lovely town with more sunlight than my Norwegian-self think is normal for winter. It is wonderful, but somehow it makes me think a storm is coming. It’s almost like being back in California, though much colder of course.
I like going for walks, watching the mountains. And I feel I’m settling down now, slowly. So many things have happened, and it’s been hard for me to find the quiet within myself to write. And whenever I do write something (I have several unpublished drafts) I feel afraid to share it. Perhaps I’ve been a bit raw, feeling vulnerable. Scared of not being enough, or too much. All of that stuff. But 2017 brings new beginnings. A new year, a new cycle.
The Winter Solstice
I don’t want to move into the New Year without mentioning the Winter Solstice. It was especially beautiful this time around as I celebrated it with friends, on the top of the mountain, above the clouds. It truly felt like we were in a different land, farfarabove everything and everyone else. In a different world. We climbed the mountain beneath an orange sky, and at the top, we did a ceremony together. We sang and watched the sun come up. I remember the pink edge of the clouds and how they stretched out like an ocean below us. And the incense, drifting like smoke above the ground around us. We were all robed in white and yellow, and a friend stood in the center of the circle, dressed as the Divine Mother. She lit a candle as the sun rose, and it felt like magic. A gift. I’ve always wanted to celebrate the Solstices and Equinoxes as long as I’ve known they existed. And now I’m finally part of a group that brings that old magic back to life.
Christmas was also beautiful and spent among friends. I felt I was given small gifts of moments, of meaningful discoveries. Gifts of love. And I went for a walk in the dusk of Christmas Eve, standing for a long time under the Christmas star, praying, hoping. Asking for help. I always feel sad on that day, missing my family. I just can’t help it, even after all these years. I always feel broken open and hurting a bit. But I was reminded that I’m very lucky to have received so much love growing up. It fed me and helped me have hope in life, and in other people. I still feel I’m carrying that love inside of me, like a golden seed.
Wishing everyone a beautiful 2017. I would love to hear from you. How are you?
They are so fragile, these voices that want to come through. I hear them and close my eyes fro a moment, listening. But sometimes I feel too thin and worn to write them down, and I need more listening, more watching as spring comes out, the world unfurling itself in green and new colors.
I’ve been wandering through quiet spaces, looking for words, light, myself. The Goddess.
I went outside to see if my rocks were there, the flat ones by the lake. And I found them, only half swallowed by the recent rain, and I sat down, hugging my knees, gazing out on the sky and water, the distant mountains. The world felt warm and friendly, alive once more with bees and flowers, green grasses saying and gleaming in the sunlight. A yellow butterfly fluttered over the lake, and I watches waves lap against rocks, leaving wet glittering shapes.
Later I gathered windflowers. There are so many of them now, like white blankets in the fields, and I pick them, love them. They’re my childhood remembered. But there are other flowers too. Dandelion, the first violets along the roadside. I walked in the warmth of the sun, picked green leaves to nibble on, heard the clear song of birds, saw shadows of wings on the road.
These are light days, bright days, the world transformed into green and colors, and the nights are half nights, pale and without stars. In the evening, I look outside and I can still see everything clearly, the world draped in soft blue, the mountains black shapes in the lake.
I walk between windows a lot, between tasks, breathing the air coming in. I feel I’ve been woken from a dream, a dark winter dream, and nothing seems quite real. Everything changed in the blink of an eye.
I stood on the rocks today, by the lake, watching the sky, seeing it darken around the edges. Lights dimming as though slowly being switched off, as clouds stretched closer, and the water grew black around me.
I could not move. I had not meant to stay out very long, but I could not leave that sky. I watched it, heard rain start to fall behind me, felt the first drop of it on my skin, and still I stayed. I don’t mind getting wet, not when I’m close to home. And it was one of those moments that I wanted to be in the middle of, like in the heart of a storm, though there was no wind, only silence and a darkness inching closer. But there was light also, golden glints of it between the clouds.
I sat down. Waited for the rain. But it did not come, instead, I felt hail, heard it sing through the trees before it reached me. And it did not sting. It was a strange thing to sit in the middle of a hail shower, that felt soft, almost like snow. It filled the hood of my coat, and got in my hair, and I tipped my head back to stare into its silver thick stream. Gradually it stopped, and the lights turned back on, the sky a thick sleepy grey. So I got up, brushed white, soft stones from my coat and climbed up the hill, to the road leading home.
I feel at times I’m still walking through winter, even with flowers coming up everywhere, and new leaves sprouting on trees. The air is so cold, and the nights still breathing ice through my window. I do hope it will warm up, that it won’t be a cold summer like last year.
My husband and I went for a hike through the forest last Sunday, and I watched the sky then too. We came to a clearing with a dirt road and houses, and I saw how dark it was, beautiful, powerful, brewing a storm above grey apple trees. And it hailed, and I heard a crack of thunder, shaking the sky.
I feel the world breaking open, and earlier on my walk today, I imagined the Goddess tipping a pot of gold through the cracks in the clouds, making flowers and colors spread over fields and grass. I felt like sitting down, mouse still in the grass, watching clouds roll past me, getting lost in them. Sometimes I feel them swallowing me up, as though my spirit is not on the ground, but in the sky, and I feel their rain and light, the power they gather on their journey across the world.
Light is returning, so I stand by my window in the early morning when the birds are singing to moonlight, and the sky is not dark, not bright, but somewhere in-between. The whole world is blue and shining, and I can feel dawn creeping closer, closer. It comes quickly now, so I grasp this moment with both hands, a moment of magic, two worlds intersecting, when standing by my window is standing between night and day. And I can see the trees, the lake, the mountains slip into brightness.
It’s strange how when the sky is no longer blue, but white, a touch of gold on the horizon, the birds fall silent. It’s as though they were only singing to wake the sun, or call down the moon. There is a stretch of quiet around sunrise, and then the day starts, the magic breaks and all is bright and normal again. The birds are just birds, happy song filled things, of air and feathers, and not mystical beings of the night, of the in-between, singing through dimensions.
Last night I was in a beautiful landscape, and my spirit soaked it up like rain water. I remember simply watching the clouds, feeling the wind in my hair, thinking, I’m gathering jewels in my soul because it was all so beautiful. I thought of the Goddess as I fell asleep, and maybe she brought me a moment of magic, of beauty.
The dream world tends to be even more vibrant and colorful than this one, those moments when it shows up crystal clear.
And then I woke up and heard the morning birds, the ones calling out the time before sunrise. The world was a soft, dark blue and they must be different birds than the ones singing during the day because they sound different, mystical, magical. I listened for a while and then got up, crawled into bed, because I had fallen asleep on the couch. I’ve been sick with a stomach virus, but I feel a bit better today, on the inside as well. Maybe my dreams revived me a little. I feel I can write again.
I stood by the window, in my chilled, almost frozen bedroom, and watched the moon. A winter cold moon I thought, even though it’s spring. It was round and full and the world had fallen silent around it.
I feel I live for drops of beauty in my life, moments I can tuck away somewhere inside of me. And they are everywhere, especially in spring when the world is ready to burst forth with color, and yet is taking its time doing it. In a way, I’m glad because then there is time to watch it happen. Yesterday my husband and I drove to look for something he lost while stopping along the road a few days ago. We ended up wading through a hill full of windflower, which made me want to lie down among them and feel their voices. We didn’t find what we came for, but we got to be in an ocean of white for a while.
I also wanted to share some videos with you. There’s a series of them, where myself and others are talking about astral projection, dreams etc. You can also see my husband there, a guy with dark curly hair and a friendly face. I feel a bit shy sharing, just because it’s hard to see myself on video, but maybe you’d like to watch them.