Posted in Air, Autumn, Blast From the Past, Dreams, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Faith, Fire, Maryland, Nature, Photography, Play, Portals & Pathways, Quotes, Spirit, Walking & Wandering, Wonder, Writing

A leap

Wondering what's on the other side. (Nova Scotia, June 2012)
Wondering what’s on the other side. (Nova Scotia, June 2012)

Sometimes you’ve got to jump off cliffs and grow wings on the way down.

~ Ray Bradbury

Walking towards the edge.
Walking towards the edge.  (Nova Scotia, June 2012)

If you are at all familiar with the Tarot, you know it is often described as the story of The Fool’s Journey.  For those not familiar, all you really need to know is that The Fool is an archetype for the starting point for all of our journeys.  He is often depicted poised on the edge of a cliff, one foot firmly on the ground, the other lifted and ready to take a leap of faith.   He is accompanied by a dog that is said to symbolize the inner self (who can become hostile when we don’t pay attention) and holding a white rose of purity and passion.  He carries a bag on a stick and in the bag are the things we all carry and call experiences, but his experiences are there to help, not to hinder, because they are lessons learned, not guilt and regret to be dragged around like a great pile of stones.

Through the window. (On the Lone Sheiling Trail, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, June 2012)
Through the window. (On the Lone Sheiling Trail, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, June 2012)

The Fool represents true innocence, a kind of perfect state of joy and freedom, a feeling of being one with the spirit of life at all times; in other words, the ‘immortal’ self we feel became entrapped in the confusions and compromises of the ordinary world…

…’Innocence’ is a word often misunderstood.  It does not mean ‘without guilt’ but rather a freedom and a total openness to life, a complete lack of fear that comes through a total faith in living and in your own instinctive self…

… The Fool bears the number 0 because all things are possible to the person who is always ready to go in any direction… His innocence makes him a person with no past, and therefore an infinite future.  Every moment is a new starting point.

~ Rachel Pollack, Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom

A fairy tale trail. (Lone Sheiling Trail, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, June 2012)
A fairy tale trail. (Lone Sheiling Trail, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, June 2012)

I have long been fascinated with the Tarot, not for divination purposes.  Maybe you can, maybe you can’t, is how I feel about predicting the future using cards or any other divination tools.  It can be easy to fit vague prophecy into a specific event.  That said, I’ve had at least one uncanny reading done for me so I’m open to possibilities.

My fascination with Tarot is more about the stories and archetypes, as well as the insights that can be gained when it comes to the past and present, and making decisions.  The archetypal characters, images, and stories can be enlightening, and entertaining.  There are so many different decks to explore with a lot of variations on the same story, and the artwork is often amazing (or at least interesting).

Replica of a Scottish crofter's hut. Lone Sheiling Trail.
Replica of a Scottish crofter’s hut. Lone Sheiling Trail.

As a few of you might remember, I purchased the Osho Zen Tarot last year.  It’s become my favorite because the images and the stories or meanings that go with them are so, well, Zen.  Meditative.  Insightful.  Osho’s take on The Fool is:

Moment to moment, and with every step, the Fool leaves the past behind. He carries nothing more than his purity, innocence and trust, symbolized by the white rose in his hand. The pattern on his waistcoat contains the colors of all four elements of the tarot, indicating that he is in harmony with all that surrounds him. His intuition is functioning at its peak. At this moment the Fool has the support of the universe to make this jump into the unknown. Adventures await him in the river of life.

The card indicates that if you trust your intuition right now, your feeling of the ‘rightness’ of things, you cannot go wrong. Your actions may appear ‘foolish’ to others, or even to yourself, if you try to analyze them with the rational mind. But the ‘zero’ place occupied by the Fool is the numberless number where trust and innocence are the guides, not skepticism and past experience.

Following the trail. (Skyline Trail, Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia, June 2012)
Following the trail. (Skyline Trail, Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia, June 2012)

Why am I rambling on and on about Tarot cards?  The simple answer is that yesterday I decided to take a leap of faith.  It involves something I have wanted to do for a while, but held back for a variety of reasons including a feeling of not being good enough, and thinking it would be foolish to even try.  After making the decision and following through, I drew my card for the day and wouldn’t you know it?  It was The Fool.

One thing you might not know about me is that I dropped out of high school when I was fifteen years old.  I did pass the GED (high school equivalency exam) a few months later, and took a few college classes during the year that should have been my junior year in high school.  I eventually dropped out of college, too.  I couldn’t decide what I wanted to be when I grew up, and it seemed a waste of time and resources (money) to keep taking classes when I was neither disciplined enough nor interested enough to follow through.

Continuing. (Skyline Trail.)
Continuing. (Skyline Trail.)

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to write.  I’ve been journaling forever, or so it seems, and blogging is, of course, a form of journaling for me.  As a child I wrote stories, and as a teen I wrote (bad) poetry.  I still write (possibly bad) poetry.  Being a person who calls herself a writer, however, felt way outside of my field of expertise.  Although I am smart enough to know better, there are times when I allow my inner critic to translate my lack of higher formal education into a lack of confidence and even ability, even when I’m sitting here writing which should prove that at the very least, and without passing judgments about good or bad, proper or improper, I have the ability to write.

Leaning.
Leaning.

Over the past few years I’ve played with the idea of signing up for NaNoWriMo, but didn’t feel like I was qualified.  That’s silly, isn’t it?  Those of you who have participated in NaNo know there are no degrees required.  At the NaNoWriMo website, this is pretty much the only requirement I’ve come across:

Valuing enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline, NaNoWriMo is for anyone who has ever thought about writing a novel.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I found this white rose blooming today.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I found this white rose blooming today.

In case you haven’t guessed already, in a moment of (in)sanity, I signed up for NaNoWriMo yesterday.  I am a Rebel NaNo writer because I am not writing a novel (defined as a long work of fiction).  Rebel is cool, and yes, there is a category and forum for that.  I have had an idea for a book swimming around in my mind for a couple of years, and it is time I sat down and tried to do something with it.  NaNoWriMo starts on Sunday.  I have a lot of work ahead of me.  The really neat thing is this:  I think I can do it.

Crepe myrtle and sweet gums.
Crepe myrtle and sweet gums.

A note about some of today’s images:  My father has asked me to put together a book for him using Bible quotes and my images.  I did a similar book a few years ago, self-published through Blurb, using old quotes (way beyond copyright issues) and photos representing the colors blue and purple.  Dad really liked it, ordered a bunch of them, and gave them away as gifts.  While talking with him today, Dad directed me towards a few of his favorite Bible passages, and so, I’ve been looking through old photos to see what I might have that fits.  It dawned on me as I was looking that I still have many photos from our trip to Canada and Maine that I haven’t shared yet.  I might pop a few into a post here and there from time to time.

Cherry tree color pop on a cloudy day.
Cherry tree color pop on a cloudy day.

I reckon that is more than enough from me on this windy, rainy, cloudy with sunny spells Wednesday.  We are experiencing a King Tide here on the Eastern Shore today.  Have you ever heard of a King Tide?  I hadn’t heard the name before a few days ago, but I know what it is.  It is a non-scientific term for higher than usual seasonal tides.  I usually call it a “higher than usual” tide, and they often occur during the new and full moon phases.  I was out about an hour ago and our woods are flooding, and fish are once again swimming on the Woodland Trail.

The crepe myrtles are on fire with color.
The crepe myrtles are on fire with color.

Thanks for stopping by.  I’ll be back again on Saturday for the coffee chat.  After that, I’ll post the Walktober round-up (on Monday, November 2), and then it will be wait and see.  I have no idea what I’m getting into with NaNo or how much time it’s likely to take each day.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

One more because they're so pretty.
One more because they’re so pretty.
Advertisements

Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

43 thoughts on “A leap

  1. Everything is aligned in your favor – even a King Tide washing away all doubt, obstacles – a cleansing – a new page. Write. No choice. It’s what you do well….
    Oh that and take the most enchanted pictures only to arrange them in perfect logical magical order. You see – with eyes and soul. Time for you to soar
    (Sounds like cool books – both of them…bet others would think so too…Amazon is starting up a site for sellers – big opportunity. Perfect, no fooling.)

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a thoughtful post, Robin! You weave together so many things–tarot, your past, your fears, your goals. . . You are definitely a writer–you shouldn’t doubt that. Some people who have blogs and write regularly are not really writers–you know what I mean, I’m sure. 😉
    I’ve thought of signing up for NaNo, too, but with two books that I’m already supposed to be working on (not novels), I don’t think it would be practical. Maybe next time.

    I haven’t heard of King Tide–I wonder if we’re experiencing that in my area. I heard there was flooding in some of the lower lying places.

    Lovely, lovely photos.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Today, I wished we were together, to talk in person, but as we are not, I read, and my mind interjected so many things to say to you, too lengthy to write here in “comments”, so instead, I will wish you well as you take your leap, Robin. You have what it takes to write, to do anything your heart desires. And it is my belief that the Fool is actually the wise one ~ just remember zero, every day. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The lovely thing about writing Robin is that you can just do it… and the more you write the better you get. Sometimes I wonder whether doing a course is a distraction, a kind of noble procrastination…Take the leap of faith…x

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What an insanely fabulous post! Guess what? You are not alone in signing up for NaNoWriMo… I did so myself. (I actually signed up once before and wrote – NOT A SINGLE WORD!) Not this time, though. I am determined to get all my stories down.
    What a lovely bunch of photos (the one province I’ve yet to visit!) and I love the idea of merging photos with quotes.
    Listen to Mouse… do it!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I think the compass directs you to do this thing. Leap and the net will appear! Will you post what you write every day?
    Love that crepe myrtle! I saw some when I visited the Biltmore Estate in April and loved the smooth, gorgeous bark – now that I see the fall color, I love it even more!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Eliza. 🙂 I don’t think I’ll be posting what I write, but you never know. Some of it could spill over. If my dry run at writing for NaNo is any indication, I suspect I won’t have much time for blogging. Maybe once I get my mind to settle in it will go more smoothly.

      Crepe myrtles are lovely. They are also what Douglas Tallamy called “plastic trees” in the talk you pointed me towards. The bugs don’t touch them. In a way, that’s a nice feature because they always look so nice. And since we have so many native species here on the property, a few plastic trees can’t hurt. 😀

      If you head south of where I live, taking the main highway (U.S. 13), when you get into Virginia the highway is lined with crepe myrtle trees. I often wonder who planted them all. Maybe the state of Virginia? Whatever the case, it’s a beautiful sight when they are in bloom. Hundreds and hundreds of crepe myrtle trees. I should take a drive down there soon to see what they are like now that the leaves have changed color.

      Like

      1. Sounds beautiful, even if they are a bit ‘plastic.’ I imagine eventually an insect will come along that thinks they are tasty, might take a few million years, but what the heck!
        Maybe you can just blog post on Wordless Wednesday or Silent Sunday, just to let us know you’re still out there? It’s only a month, so I guess we can manage if we have to without your gorgeous photos and coffee chats! 😉

        Like

  7. That image of fish swimming the woodland trails again! I see it in watercolor. Gorgeous post. Beautiful pictures. I be your book for your dad will be perfect and your NaNo writing a treasure–for yourself and maybe others as well. Keep us posted!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m thrilled for you—and I’ll say this, as someone who has read hundreds and hundreds of books…many of the most vivid and affecting are those written by people with no “qualifications.” MFA factories produce a certain type of rather self-conscious writer. English degrees produce a different type of often overly cautious writer. No degree, no school, can teach you how to surrender to the immanent divine that causes and nurtures creativity. You know where it is in yourself; I see it in your photographs, that particular marriage of ecstasy and observation. You don’t even need wings to take the jump; the wind currents are stronger and more buoyant than you think, and there are zip lines in places you’d never otherwise look.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for a wonderful and well thought out comment, David. Zip lines!! I like that (at least in my imagination). I also like what you wrote about the “marriage of ecstasy and observation.” You put into words something I’ve been unable to define when it comes to photographing what I see as everyday or ordinary magic.

      You are one of those writers I admire and your encouragement means a lot. Thank you. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh congratulations on taking that great big scary jump! Hooray for you. I suspect you’ll be rewarded for this brave step.

    We’re having a king tide out here on the west coast, too. My fisherman keeps track of them things. I hadn’t expected them to happen on both coasts, but since they’re caused by the alignment of the earth, moon and sun, why not?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. My English is limited, not my mother tongue . There is an author you should meet “Liz Greene”. She is one of the founders of a new astrology trend that is called psychological astrology. I know this is unrelated LOL but I wanted to send you an email and couldn´t find it . Then I´ll explain to you why I think you will love her. Have a great week!!!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Dawn. 🙂 My Dad loves those things, and I really should have done a few more of them for him. I get lazy about it because it’s so time consuming to pull it all together. I do books for my granddaughters, too, although those have been mostly just pictures from our times together.

      Like

  10. Congratulations, Robin, for taking that leap of faith and signing up for NaNoWriMo! Wishing you all the best as you start a new adventure. Love the synchronicity of you drawing the fool card and finding the white rose in your garden.

    I think what you call a king tide is what we call a spring tide. Yesterday I was out doing errands and had to turn around on a road that goes along the Mystic River. The tide was so high it was pushing the river up on the low part of the road, with little waves breaking over the pavement.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hey there Robin. Sitting back finally trying to get caught up with my favorite bloggers this morning. Its been a while since I’ve taken a morning to do this. I’m starting with this post of yours and moving forward from here. It’s been over a month since I’ve posted at my own place and I feel like I don’t even know where to start any more! I’ve seen some of what you’ve been up to on FB also – hope your writing project is going well for you.

    Like

Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s