IV

Elenya ~ Saturday

For me there is something about living in a house that is older than I am. I always experience an aura of timelessness and enduring mystery. If a place has “made it” past the half century mark, it will last beyond my life time and I feel safe within its sheltering walls. I love the fragrance of old wallpaper, mellowed woodwork, and aged paint. The creak of wood floors comforts me and gazing outside through the wavy glass of antique windows, softens a sunny day.

Twice in my life, I have made one of these enduring fortresses my home. The coolness of old plaster on a summer day and the beauty of maple floors, always lifts my spirits. During the process of restoration, there are always surprises. I remember well, taking old door hardware apart and seeing the date of origination. To think that the brass pieces had not seen the light of day for almost one hundred years always amazed me. There is a continuum and beauty about it. All the bumps that take place during the journey that seems to make up my life smooths out and becomes a consistent ribbon of travel.

There really is something about not holding on too tight. Holding onto my life always seems to create stress. Keeping my fingers wrapped tightly around the stuff of my life often brings unhappiness. What will bring joy and contentment after it is gone? It is difficult, but I am learning to live with my heart and my hands open.

Training my mind to dwell on the small things....the things that do not depend on me possessing them, is what brings joy into my life. These can be the small, unimportant flowers alongside a cracked and heaving sidewalk or the shape of a Gingko leaf. Seeing a crow in flight, gliding along right beside me, always brings a smile to my face. The mighty shape of a cumulonimbus cloud, raring up into a deep blue sky, brings a sense of wonder to my mind. These are things that can not be taken away because they are unowned by me. They are powerful and unattainable. They are also a constant source of intrigue and excitement.

Hanging too tightly onto a relationship can be just as deadly. Friendships last for a season and then pass on. Their lasting fragrance brings joy to me and also a sense of sadness. I would love for them to last forever. However “forever” is only something owned by God. My life is but a fleeting mist, and often I do not understand something of such lasting value.

And so, I live a life of window shopping. Gazing and enjoying brings endless fun to me. There is no end to it and it is a constant source of entertainment. I do love to surround myself with beautiful objects to look at and enjoy, however just a few make me happy. I love to think there are many more things to look at “out there” and they will always be there.

May you see and enjoy rather than possess and worry ~ Tasarwen

end of page
back home

III

Anarya ~ Sunday

It was a happy thought to bring
To the dark season’s frost and rime
This painted memory of spring,
This dream of summertime.
~ John Greenleaf Whittier

As I gaze out the window on this dreary winter afternoon, my eyes sweep the horizon outlined by still-snowy mountains. They are jagged and lofty, giving the impression of teeth. Our valley is ringed by them and their monolithic presence brings a stillness to my mind. It broadens my mind to be surrounded by these ancient beings. My place in the total scheme of things is very small but if I was as grand, would I see the small things and be of value to others? I think not.

It has been said that it is important to live well in the quiet routine of life; to fill a little place and go on cheerfully with the small routine of everyday life. Also, to smile for the joy of others while banishing all restlessness creates contentment. I think true happiness comes in helping others achieve great things. Putting one’s self in the back seat and allowing the other person to shine brightly out in front, brings much satisfaction.

And so I have learned to look outward and not inward. It is a hard lesson to learn and one that has taken almost one half of a century for me to realize. Not that I have attained this skill, but practice makes perfect so I press on toward the goal. I have also learned the importance of watching for the small things: to focus in on them. By watching and waiting for them, I forget about all those “big” things that I can do nothing about, anyway. I am learning to look only briefly backwards, immerse myself in the moment, and gaze out toward the future.

Early this morning, I heard the most delightful of sounds. The song of birds, happily carried along in the chill of dawn. There is a swelling of life at the ends of branches, promising a burst of color. Snow is melting everywhere and bare ground can be seen here and there. So, with the promise of another season right around the corner, I am waiting and watching. The worst of winter is behind us and spring is waiting in the wings. The next six months will bring a swift succession of seasons. Spring, summer, and fall will follow each other very quickly before the long months of winter come upon us again.

May you walk forward and enjoy every moment along the way ~ Tasarwen

end of page
back home

II

Eärenya ~ Thursday

In my dotage, occasionally memories float into my mind. At times they are kind while at other times they would better be forgotten. Most of them are rather fuzzy and softened with age. I have always prided myself with having the mind of a steel trap and never forgetting anything. However, of late I am noticing that past events are fading away, never again to be remembered.

Recently, it has come back to me that I wanted to be a writer when I was but a pup. In my earliest years of schooling, I developed a great love for The Black Stallion books, written by Walter Farley. I had a love affair with horses anyway and these books ignited my imagination. I read about horses, rode horses, and would bore everyone to death talking about them. One day I sat down and began a long story about a certain horse. Before I knew it, I had actually written a book. It was written on lined notebook paper and ended up to be quite a large stack of it. My story was rich in descriptions and dialog. Because I loved to draw, there were many illustrations. I was very proud of it and from what I can remember, it was quite a story.

How well I remember the day I took it to my mother for her to read. She barely glanced at it and told me how stupid it was. With lowered head, I walked back to my room and hid my “book” in the back of my closet. Evidently, it vanished along with all of my Black Stallion and Island Stallion books. To this very day, I feel sad about it. My dream to be a writer disappeared for a time.

The writing bug bit me again while I was in college, studying for a bachelor’s degree in fine arts. I also had a minor in art history and loved archeology. Contemporary artists did not interest me but while taking a class about modern artists, I developed a love for the work of Joan Miró (1893-1983). His paintings were so free and whimsical. I was enchanted. We were required to write an extensive thesis about any artist we chose within the period we were studying and of course I chose Miró. For weeks I poured every bit of research and imaginations into this paper. The writing bug bit down hard. I was very proud of the results and could hardly wait to see my grade. This class was a graduate level course and this paper was my finest endeavor. Imagine my stunned surprise when I was awarded a “B”. Immediately, I requested a conference with my professor. I had never questioned a grade before, so it was very difficult to confront him. He gave me a smug look and accused me of plagiarism. He said that my paper was “too good” to have been written by me. I was shocked, to say the least. That ended any and all expression using the written word. Never again did I write down my thoughts, stories, desires, or any other verbal expression.

Four years ago, I was bitten by the writing bug again. Entering musings in a journal intrigued me so I decided to give it a try. The first time I sat down to write, I was terrified. Getting the words out of my mind and down on paper (or computer) was very difficult. I forced myself to do it. And so it goes. With time, it has gotten easier. The criticism under which I suffered in my younger years is gone and my skin has gotten thicker. It is so freeing to be old enough to not care what others think and young enough to care what I think.

Mostly, I do not write about (or think much about) age related things, but these thoughts hovered in the back of my mind. Hopefully, by sharing them you will learn that dreams may go away for a while but when the time is ripe, they may return. Richer and more polished by the passing of many years, I am better able to communicate many musings. If they be silly, who cares!

May you never give up your dreams ~ Tasarwen

end of page
back home

I

Isilya ~ Monday

There is something wonderful about teapots. Several sit around my abode and I delight in each and every one of them. Perhaps it is how happy they are to have a person’s hands wrapped around them, absorbing their warmth. Or perhaps it is the pleasing lines of their curves and the balance of handle versus spout. Maybe even, it is their stability and timelessness. They always make me smile.

sterling teapot

Many of my teapots are used on various occasions, except for an antique Limoges teapot which has hand painted roses on its curved body. That particular one sits on a shelf with a doily under its base and is admired daily. It has been in existence for over one hundred years and has earned its esteemed position on an antique walnut bookcase. There is also the sterling teapot who traveled across the Atlantic, having been born over one hundred and fifty years ago in the land of tea drinkers; England. It too, has earned retirement. It is polished regularly and admired, even though it wears a dent or two.

Yes, I have to pick them up often to dust and clean them, but they never fail to stir stories in my mind of gentle times and sweet conversation.

Today, I am sitting with my feet up surrounded by quilts and a purring kitty. It is a pleasant way to spend a winter afternoon. Snow is blowing and swirling around outside, moving in many different directions. It is a nice change to be on the still side, watching the action through a window. Nature is ever moving and changing. It never stays the same and never accommodates humans. We are merely along for the ride, be it fast or slow.

Winter has gripped us in its icy fangs for what seems like ages. Cold and colorless, it goes onward without any warmth. However, the sun is riding higher in the sky these days promising of more warmth to come.

My color starved eyes have been devouring a wonderful new book called Flowers, by Dorothy McDaniel. This tome is luscious with color photography and is beautifully written. It has been a delight to feast upon while snow blows all around my abode.

I love and enjoy flowers of every kind, shape, and form. However, fragrance is a “must” in my garden. Shoving my nose into the heart of a blossomy rose is nothing short of Heaven. Often, I miss my garden of old and think of the next one to come.

Of late, my hubby has been interested in living in the northeastern part of Tennessee. Our retirement years are just around the corner and we have been searching out places to live. It appears to be a gentle place with a climate that would be very conducive to an English garden. I am partial to hollyhocks, foxgloves, delphiniums, cosmos, antique roses, and peonies. Many times I sit back, close my eyes, and my mind drifts to the garden of my dreams. There is such peace and contentment in tending a garden. Methinks it is the same drifting which comes with the grooming of my tresses. It is a nurturing spirit and one that brings happiness into my life.

May you enjoy your garden of delights ~ Tasarwen

end of page