Why I am crying in the Lisbon airport

LisboaSo, here I am pulling my black just-within-airline-regulation-size suitcase behind me and weaving my way through the Lisbon airport, on the way to Milan, crying.

Which surprises me in some ways, since I feel more a sense of elation and joy than sadness after 13 magical days in Portugal, though there is also a kind of underlying grief. I realize that I am once again experiencing this special flavor of lovesick grieving reserved for Viaggiatori, that is, Travelers. You know, traveling: not as a temporary trip but as a way of life. The ones like me, and maybe you too, who move through life following the pull of the heart into motion, oriented by an inner compass that magnetically gives the direction toward the right place, at the right time, with the right people, in the perfection of the present moment, in the saturated fullness of being here now.

And sometimes this pull carries me to improbable destinations, where the southern Mediterranean sun saturates my skin with heat and glowing light, immediately soothed by autumn breeze. Where moist, freshly picked olives slip through my fingers as we corral them fast into buckets, the dark purple-grey ones a ripe contrast to the hard shades of, well, olive green. Where ten of us barely fit into the back of a rusty pickup truck bed along with 6 ladders and a collection of rakes, shovels, pitchforks and tarps, bouncing around, holding onto the sides and waving to farmers and passers by.

wavesWhere ocean waves in pure aquamarine splash up the pristine sandy shore through emerald reflections and crystalline white foam, and after swimming naked in the breathless cold water, I perch on the rock shelves observing the strata of earth in a rainbow of fierce iron reds and golden yellow, as the heat of sunlight dries my skin beaded with salt water.

Where clear lucid eyes are still glowing and sweet laughter still singing in the echo of memory, of friendships both ancient and freshly made. Souls found and rediscovered, reunited after… how much time? And every gift of presence, breath, sound, movement, stillness, storytelling, tea service and love… returns in an instant in the infinite flow, of gratitude, generosity.

Memories of community dinner time, marina coffee break, mango trees in the greenhouse dripping with heavy fruit, the cherimoya seeds embedded in soft white flesh, and the dangling red beads of magnolia blossoms.

AlmendresWhere I dance in stone circles, millennial matriarchal healing circles and more recent ones holding the power of cosmic archetypes. Sunrise, ring of power. Danced prayer. Water and reawakening.

Ritual night fire, white sage and red blessings. Warm chestnuts and washes of starlight.

Temple space surrounded with quiet woods, opening the heart through spirals and candlelight.

I realize I am crying because I have fallen in love, not even with a particular person, place or thing really; it’s more like being in love with the ripe lushness of everything, the infinite delicacy of being free, feeling so lit up and alive. A breath of fire, breathing through the journey, over fertile farmed landscawaterpes and rolling green hillsides, to the edge of the ocean and deep inside. Orienting hearts, trees.

So, I wipe away the tears and divert my eyes as I move forward in the airport security line, distracting myself from the emotion of flying away yet again, from one world to another, from home to a home away from homeViaggiare. means constantly arriving saying hello and goodbye and see you again sometime – some lifetime – and in the meantime “io sono con te, sempre,” all in the same breath. I shake off the tears in the rushed chaos of removing belts and shoes, getting my toothpaste tube inspected, and listening to a cacophony of Italian and Portuguese conversation. Finding the Departures monitor. Checking the gate number. Ticket and passport in hand, to remind myself of where I am going and who I have been. Knowing that the journey is always the destination, and every departure an act of closure and celebration, a flight into the pure infinite azure sky of rebirth and new possibility, new love, new synergy, new dreams.

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days of the hunt and gold rays of the sun

Mt. ShastaOpen up lives, stories of different eras and morals. Days of the hunt, the green of the leaves, pines strong and centred. Animals, bearers of messages and companionship, nourishment. Sacred alliances. Rhythms of nature. Encounters and ecstasy. Silence. Fire. Reading stones and clouds. Stars speaking in winks. Codes in the flowers, in the colors of clothing that identify: Roles. Relations. and every emotion is truth because every gesture, every word comes from the spontaneous purity of being. Gold in the rays of the sun touching the fertile land. Silver in the reflection of the moon. Fire concentrates all eyes toward a great unified vision, of life and victory.

written on Mount Shasta, California, 2 September 2013

Aprire le vite, racconti di epoche e morali diversi. Giorni di caccia, la verde delle foglie, i pini forti e centrati… Continue reading

All night archiving

Where is my place?

featherIt’s here. at the desk with a pen in hand (or keyboard under the fingers in this era of digitized feathers and ink), almost midnight… past midnight… way past midnight. in the silence, listening to the rhythm of hearts pulsing ever more in unison, in dreams… translating heartbeats into images. transmutation of pure emotion in a trail of color, vision, sensory delights. this is the alchemy of the artist of life.

although I am not an artist, not really… I am an archivist. every encounter, thought, sensation and impulse – from the first time I saw you to the most recent courageous tale – everything is conserved and catalogued in the library of memory – the astral one and the random access one – in the subversive library of congress and the one of regressions in time and past lives. the university one with interminable shelves on tracks with steering wheels to move them left and right, creating an opening just big enough for a human body to enter and search through the volumes of knowledge and history, with the ever present risk of finding yourself crushed between the section on the French revolution sliding closed against the discourses on macroeconomics… reminding us that even research is a daring journey.

in this immense spaceship, traveling between time empires and stellar conquests, millennial lifetimes and oracular knowledge, my place is much smaller than all that. the bed of a cat that prowls at night and sleeps little, purring and gathering intuitions. I am like any of us, never essential and always unique.

Dov’è il mio posto?

E’ qui. alla scrivania, penna in mano (o tastiera sotto le dita in quest’epoca di piume ed inchiostro digitalizzati), quasi mezzanotte… oltre… ben oltre… Continue reading

radically inclusive video montage

I clicked the option in iMovie that makes thumbnails of all the video clips in my library. As I was watching them, I was moved to see how many events fade from memory over time.

I was thinking if in the end, I were to edit together a video montage of highlights from my life, I would have a hard time selecting and cutting footage. How do I decide? The everyday moments, sweeping the floor, hammering, preparing tea in the morning, are they less significant than the ceremonial ones and oaths? Is there less action in the silence and harmonization than in the shows and Popolo celebrations? I would leave it all in.

nailsI think I would just increase the saturation a little during the rituals, the elaborate and spontaneous ones, and turn up the red hue for the dances too. Let’s see how many times different scenes in costume and makeup reappear—they are rituals too, of beauty, transformation, joy.

I would slow motion the most firepressing moments to dilute them, transform even those into a dance. The unstoppable tears and fears, those of stage fright, when in the wings, courage negotiates to compensate for preparation, and I feel the hand of the first Questio pushing me from behind.

I closely observe the order of operations after the alarm clock: putting on the personal self again, then prayer, bracelet on the head and a sip of prana charged water, pausing on the card of the day. I take note of how many times the slippers placed in a ‘T’ before sleeping really brought fortune the next day.

Let’s fast forward through the depressive phases, flat grey differentiating itself with contrast adjustment, and add a filter to soften the most furious and manic peaks.

Go in for a close-up on the most beautiful exchanges, emotions and gazes, whispering of poetry in other languages, heartfelt stories that trigger a fade out into flashback, obliterating every geographic and temporal distance.

Turn up the volume for the songs and the birds, and activate the subtitles at the misunderstandings.

Where is the temperature control? Can’t I heat up that first winter under the snow in Perugia, or turn down the humidity for the sweaty summer adventures?

With videocameras from different angles, I see things that I have never seen before: unobserved shooting stars, things that were lost, princessthings that escaped, things that were thrown away but anyhow continuing a trace of existence in the trash heap. All the invisible help received—if I could see it now, I would never feel abandoned or alone.

I add a golden filter to every gift created and exchanged. The moments of totality in the creation, writing and dreaming, painting and traveling, depicted in Miyazaki style animation.

As director of this work of art, the most important step is tying the last scene to the beginning, because every resolution of the plot brings us to a sequel, another episode.
breakfastHo cliccato un’opzione nel programma iMovie sul computer e si sono messi in fila tutti i videoclip che c’erano nella mia biblioteca. Mentre li guardavo, mi emozionava vedere quanti eventi svaniscono dalla memoria…

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