Pamela Coleman Smith

If you want wisdom, listen to your readers. Here's a perfect example

I live in the woods, for now. The very tall fir trees which surround my house block out the night sky, which is further sullied with light pollution. Since moving here in 2020 I've had to forfeit the night sky, sunsets over mountains (as in Colorado) and the intense joy of staring at a waxing moon at high altitude.

The cooler temps, the sussuration of wind through the firs and all the other night sounds around here in Central Oregon have been well worth the price.

As I contemplate forfeiting that which I gave up much to experience, I also am pushed to open myself up to what comes next. I've already reached out to begin researching Colombia and surrounds in August, and have already confirmed three months a year in Tanzania, although like all other plans those are about as firm as fresh Jello.

What was I saying? Oh. The Moon.

The moon in the Tarot, upright, is indicative of very female, liquid, watery and often confused elements, that wolf-baying and utterly wild part of us that absolutely has to run at night in the thrashing woods. It speaks of illusion and deception- to my mind, primarily of the self- and transitions. It's a most powerful card in the Major Arcana.

We all have a part of that inside us. Some more than others. One starry night in Indonesia in 2018, I stripped to my naked self and climbed up the middle mast of a large phinisi ship to hang swaying in the breezes, the  brilliant moon burnishing my 65-year-old breasts and whipping my long graying hair here and there. Such moments speak to my wildest parts, and are what are truly calling to me right now as I dismantle my domesticated bits and throw them to the wild winds.

Saga supporter and frequent commenter Penny Nelson sent me this yesterday, and she inspired this post:

dog on the loom..... Among other things, I am a weaver. I make things. I'm talking about weaving cloth on a floor loom. It takes me about a week to get set up to weave. I decide what I want to weave, let's say kitchen towels. I pick the yarn I'm going to use, choose the structure of the pattern and the colors. Once that is all organized, I thread the loom. For me, a run of kitchen towels is 12 yards long so I'm creating 10 kitchen towels and usually one shorter piece of cloth that will be a bread cloth. For this run of kitchen towels I will need 576 threads each 12 yards long. I will wind them onto the loom and thread them through the heddles, which create the pattern and through the reed, which maintains the width of the cloth. Now it's time to weave.

If all goes to plan, I weave along for a week or so and in the end pull my 11 yards of weaving off the loom. The cloth gets cut apart, washed, hemmed and ironed. Then the towels are ready to be sold or given away or used. But what if it doesn't all go to plan? Enter the dog on the loom. That is when you get into the weaving part of the process and can't, for all the tea in China, figure out what you were thinking. Why did I pick these horrible colors? This pattern is terrible! I'm changing colors so often as I weave that it's taking me 10 times longer than it should. You end up questioning every little detail. Some of these problems you can just work through and hopefully learn some lessons for the next project. But once the dog is in full residence, all weaving stops. All work stops. I walk past the loom daily and can't make myself sit and weave. Weeks pass and then months.

I have a run of bath towels on one of my looms. I was working on getting the loom dressed the spring I broke my ankle. That was 4 years ago. Clearly this is a dog on the loom. So what can you do? The best option is to suck it up, put on your big girl panties and weave the damn fabric off. Change the color you are weaving with if that will help but just get the weaving done. The alternative option is to cut all the yarn off the loom and burn it under a full moon while you dance around it naked. That is supposed to release all the energy you put into the project back out into the universe so it can be used again. And yes, I've used both of those options.... without actually dancing naked under the full moon.

The alternative option is to cut all the yarn off the loom and burn it under a full moon while you dance around it naked.

I think this is a small example of exactly what you're talking about. There comes a point when you just have to let go. When it's a dog on the loom, the price of the yarn doesn't matter, the time spent doesn't matter, the rightness or wrongness of each and every decision doesn't matter. What matters is you let go. Pivot. Decide to focus in a new direction. Jettison what doesn't help you in your new focus. Move on. Of course, this usually doesn't require you to sell most of your personal possessions and your house but in this case it has convinced me to sell that loom that I really don't like weaving on dog or no dog. Yes. Let go. Pivot, Focus. Jettison. Move on.

Sometimes things make no damned sense at all. Perhaps they aren't supposed to. Who are we to demand that life bend to us rather than the other way around?

I am about to head to my beloved coast for Hump Day. Those days are now numbered. I am going to dance (not naked) in the rain and sand today, and celebrate the surf. Not sad at all. Slightly mad, perhaps.

But still dancing under the moon while my past life burns.

Photo by Jordan Steranka / Unsplash