A Reading From “Tales From The Medicine Trail” by Chris Kilham

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“Ipupiara’s voice called out from very far away, ‘Ask him for the teaching.’. I turned to the cat. ‘Do you have a teaching for me’? The powerful feline’s head turned up, amber eyes locking onto mine. And then he spoke. ‘You must journey to other worlds, and tell people what you saw.'”
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“Native people refer to treading the path of knowledge as walking to the medicine trail. [T]hat description…gives a sense of purpose and conveys that accumulation of knowledge is in fact a journey.”

1 January 2005

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My Writer’s Heart Seems Empty

My writer’s heart seems empty. I’ve been silent for so long. I sometimes wonder whether I should bother trying together my “gift” back or if I should just move on to the next “scene,” the next skill. On the one hand, reflection on past experiences provides fodder for new explorations. So don’t forget the past; draw instead on it’s colors to fill out your pallette.

On the other hand, as long as you look to memory for your inspiration, you will be constrained by the parameters of previous experience. Rather than drawing on “dead” memory to create, think how much more lively your creation if you seek out new sensations and novel experiences.

1 January 2005 Saturday ~pm

A Reading From “With Socrates On The Sofa”

From, “With Socrates On The Sofa,” Ode Magazine, Dec 2004, p47

“[Philosopher] Gerd Achenbach is perturbed by psychotherapy….

“Auchenbach says the vast majority of day-to-day problems come from the way we lead and look at our lives — exactly the areas that philosophy can help. ‘It ties in with the tradition of Socrates,’ he says. ‘What do we need to make progress? And what should I become? To me, the question isn’t how to reach that blissful state considered normal, but what do I need now to take a step forward?”

14 December 2004 ~5:30 pm Tuesday

Collage thoughts

At a friend’s house. Just saw the most amazing collage. So detailed. Excellent concept and nearly wall-sized. Guy who did it collaged with magazines and then painted over it to provide greater depth and detail. Overall concept was of a man wearing a tribal mask and riding a Chinese dragon. That image was a composite of many, many smaller, seemingly unrelated images. Ingenious, really.

Thing was, when I saw it, I initially was overwhelmed by its scope and found myself imagining collages a tenth of the size of the piece. Chris’s reaction to MY reaction essentially amounted to “no way are you starting ANY smaller.”

Herbs As Specific Nutrition

Music: Alex Theory Project

Thoughts: I ran into Chris –that redhead who used to play in Gregg Hansen’s drum and percussion ensemble in Memphis. He and his wife had just moved back to Memphis with their four-year-old daughter.

Chris told me something very exciting that, at least in part, prompted me to think some more about my own next steps in the education/degree process. Chris said he was working on a PhD in biology, specifically botany, with an emphasis on ethno-pharmacology. He said UM didn’t really have that as an option, so he was putting it together himself.

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The Armchair Herbalist

Something to note: retail doesn’t do it anymore. Not that I mind doing it so much as entertaining myself in book or retail stores has lost its appeal.

Time’s a-ticking, as they say. I am a herbalist but all too often, of the haphazard, armchair variety. And yet there is appeal in this life for me. Where I feel I fall short is in quality use of my time. What if I could not use my laptop for a week? What more could I accomplish?

And yet, my interest is not just in healing so much as in traditional culinary, literary, cultural, and brewing use of plants. Of what value is it to society? Of what value to me?

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Coffee Shop Confidence

Met Sean at a coffee shop today, like I’d been hoping I would. After a few minutes talking to him, I realized something. I am envious of his lifestyle: thrift store chic, nice car, nice house, beautiful gardens, getting ready to go to Manhattan for the weekend. On top of that, he’s a handsome man and very sexy. It’s not that I see myself as lacking in any particular area, it’s just that I would like the disposable income to travel and play a little more seriously and a little more often. I can see the potential, but there is a sadness there too because I question whether Hi and I will ever be able to do together the kind of travel that I need to stay spiritually, emotionally, and physically well.

8/11/04