awakened body

tree woman

The awakened body takes initiatives, is no longer content to receive or “put up with.”
When we live in our body, we give body to our life
.  –Therese Bertherat

To love yourself as you are is a miracle and to seek yourself is to have found yourself. For now. And now is all we have and love is who we are. – Anne Lamott

The body itself is a dwelling place, as the Anglo-Saxons knew in naming it banhus (bonehouse) and lichama (bodyhome), and the homeliness of its nature is even livelier for a woman than for a man… Through writing her body, woman may reclaim the deed to her dwelling. . .  From Remembering the Bone House, Nancy Mairs

With May comes spring – at least we continue to hope so in the chill northern clime of Vermont. So we pair the notion of the awakening of earth’s spring body with our own. Not an unusual comparison in these parts. Winter signals a complete in-turning – layers of down, chirping log fires, warm cocoa and a really good book …

But spring? It often comes/goes so quickly it seems we leap from winter to summer in one short jump. This year it has come/gone multiple times in spurts of heat and return to damp chill. Of course we know of earth’s penchant to return season upon season. It’s just a matter of when. Our firmly-held stories about our own bodies seem to hold equal constancy, with less of the change from season to season.

Our opening poem – ‘homage to my hips’ by lucille clifton – is a bawdy all-out-brag on independence and sheer pleasure of the power of the physical body. Kind of how spring makes me feel with its rush to push all manner of life into view. Writers inside have an equally wide range of reactions to share in their words:

‘To love yourself as you are is a miracle and to seek yourself is to have found yourself.’
What do I love about myself? I have always compared myself to others and tried to be like this one or that one. As I have grown up, I am more comfortable in my skin but do not think I will ever love my skin. Talking about myself is hard, it makes me vulnerable and I do not like to feel vulnerable. 

I do love my insides, though and can talk about the qualities I possess within.

I have always been told it is the inside that matters, and don’t judge a book by its cover. This may be true, but that does not stop the girls sitting across the room from talking about others’ flaws. I always say I don’t care what anyone thinks but that is far from the truth.

I struggle to fit in more than I will ever admit.



To love yourself as you are is a miracle. Some of us can do it. Some of us are incapable. To love yourself as you are is so profound whether you’re alone staring in a mirror, or in a room with people staring all around. To love yourself as you are says a lot even if you feel extremely ugly, or so, so sexy, burning hot … To love yourself as you are is more than just an image. It is that feeling on the inside, it is the soul you were given. To love yourself as you truly are can be such a task. That’s why so many of us fake it, cover it up and put on a mask. But to love yourself is to be yourself. So please, trust me on this one. Never give up, continue to move forward in getting to know yourself!



Green hazel eyes,
so beautiful and kind
Green hazel eyes
the shape and size
long lashes to be seductive with.
Green hazel eyes
see the beauty in all evil things
see the pain in all broken beings,
see all the agony of the most beautiful human beings
the forsaken angels who wander this earth alone
like herself and her mate who found each other by fate.
Those green hazel eyes
have seen all that is divine,
the trees, the flowers, the most beautiful
happily ever afters,
beautiful disasters.
Green eyes
full of beauty and broken fantasies.
Green hazel eyes
envy of beauty
one of my favorites things.
However, all of my being is surrounded by beauty.

the miracle of winged stars

English: Pictured here is a long exposure phot...

Photo credit: Wikipedia

While we always write about current and meaningful topics that are near to the life experience and yearning hearts of circle participants, from time to time we challenge them with a more ‘writerly’ task. Such was the case this past week. In addition to writing about animals  each woman might identify with [see Jan. 10 post], we challenged them to write something using the following six nouns and six verbs: miracle, wings, night, stars, angels, cave, outlast, desire, arrive, imagine, open and sing.

They were allowed to change the form of any given word, and to add as many other words as they wished. What impressed me was the variety of ways in which the same 12 words could be gathered together in a mere five minutes. Read the samples shared below and let us know what you think of this exercise!

I imagine outlasting the miracle of winged stars arriving in my cave of night to open wide on angels’ song.  – JP

Open as a cave at night,

my imagination sings
of desire arriving on the wings
of stars, angels bearing
the single miracle
that can outlast time.  – SB

Imagine angels with open wings fluttering down from heaven to arrive at the open mouth of the cave. The stars brightly shining in the night sky sing of our desire for miracles to outlast the earth.
  – TD

I imagine opening to desire; miracles arriving like stars, outlasting the night, singing echoes in a cave carried like winged angels.  –  LS

A cold, dank, musty cave opens . . . merging fluidly with black starless night. Imagine now, if you will, that wings rustle, indicating the arrival of a miracle. An angelic voice sings, brightening that dark corner of earth with a truth that outlasts all time, space, desire and destiny . . .  – TH


Imagine this . . .
a cave at night.
You can’t see the stars.
And you’re protected by angels.
They fly with wings
and even their heart sings.
Let your mind be opened before, in real life, they arrive.
The miracle of these images will outlast all of our desires.

– AA

I am in a cave of miraculous stars. Imagine I have arrived at a place where angels outlast the dark night’s desires, and open their morning wings to sing again.   – JP