UPBEAT TIMES, INC. • November 2017 • 29 Living the Upbeat Life KOYAANISQATSI [koy-aah-nis-kat-si]
Santa Rosa, CA. ~ Hugs, dear Reader -and to Paul and the Up- beat staff as we forge our way through the tremendous challenge our community faces, grateful for upliſt ing voices and heroic actors abounding. T at’s the jewel in the bag darkly – how shared crisis brings us all together. On October 15, I
wrote a poem, a writing exercise to give me some clarity and grace. T e poem was triggered by recalling a Hopi word from the title of a 1982 fi lm called Koyaanisqatsi.
ing happily outside my window, rubbing against my staged rock pile. Or, how I’ve always enjoyed the smell of wood burning from a smoking chimney and a cozy fi re- place.
I’d been thinking of burning some logs to capture the ash for my com- post heap –and here it is. Or that I’d been consider- ing taking some
ing down the bones” of my fears (thanks, Natalie Goldberg) helped me fl esh things out, and remember too, that the Chinese word symbol for ‘crisis’ also indicates ‘opportu- nity.’ Koyaanisqatsi, in Hopi prophesy,
points to life out of balance, upside down, in disarray, disintegrating, and in need of a new way. As I write November’s column, all my familiar routines are up in smoke. T ere’s nada normale, and life is so paradoxical –and ironic. Like, being glad I am safely indoors, but also feeling caged, unable to be ac- tively outdoors, cuz there’s no fresh air for lungs. Yet I marvel that a stray kitten, a feral tabby, is play-
time off from work –and here I was with all my gigs cancelled, me without work for the fi rst time in nine years. And I’d had dinner for the fi rst time at Cricklewood Octo- ber 8 for a friend’s birthday, and it was gone hours later. Koyaanisqatsi: Synchronicity in-
side out? Before the poem, I’d been journaling for 7 days, looking for “portal-ed moments” -ahas and omgs in the fray. Like how small and insignifi cant my life can seem, then shiſt on a hair to being just everything. Or swinging from feel- ing vulnerable and needy to reg- istering how ridiculously fortunate I am.
From feeling humbled at
receiving a neighbor’s kindness, to empowered doing a kind deed for somebody else. I’ve never been so cognizant of
‘community,’ of the ecology of our common humanity, how each one of us contributes to our the success of the whole. I feel so awake to our web of life, how everything is inter- connected. Which reminds me how one night in the fi re-storming, I was lying awake unable to sleep. Sirens were wailing and as if in concert, coyotes were howling from the nearby hills of Shiloh Regional Park. I felt such kinship with them, with us all, I wanted to howl, too. I pray we can preserve what many
in our community at large are stalk- ing about --this enlivened sense of us all being in this together! And to keep bringing the best of ourselves to the tasks ahead, and supporting the best in each other.
ing the imaginary diff erences and boundaries between us. Having my life upside down is giv-
ing it new meaning, and changing habits. I’m not being complacent or complaining, and discounting others automatically, as I some- times do. For instance, during my evacuation, when I saw folks glued to their smartphone screens, in- stead of disapproval, I realized I am a senior with a dumbphone, and few skills at navigation. Anyone of those savvy users might have been a rescue for me... Koyaanisqatsi. Life Inside Out. Mindless habits up in smoke? To-
This Is Probably Not A Good Time To Start Thinking About A Will!
by Marcia Singer www.lovearts.in
day I am just grateful for my in- hales and exhales. Each breath is a giſt to this mortal woman. Birdies are singing. Extra-ordinary heroes are springing up all around, inspir- ing me to be a better citizen. And a misplaced rain may be returning. One more wee tale. While pack-
ing for a possible second evacu- ation, in the pocket of a musty overnight case, I found a small, gray zippered bag. Inside were my two “lost” much loved necklaces I’d given up ever fi nding, right where I’d hidden them three years ago, evacuating from a water-damaged rental home.
It reminded me
that unexpected joys and valuable things await me even in the hardest of times. May we all look for and fi nd many
such treasured moments through the Holiday Season, and plenty rea- sons for T anks-Giving. May we heal and thrive again in each oth- er’s care. ~Shining deLight, Marcia
Weird Facts & Trivia - 6
95% of people text things they could never say in person.
A crocodile can’t poke its tongue out.
It is physically impossible for pigs to look up into the sky.
Guinness Book of Records holds the record for being the book most often stolen from Public Libraries.
Celery has negative calories! It takes more calories to eat a piece of celery than the celery has in it to begin with. It’s the same with apples!
More people are allergic to cow’s milk than any other food.
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UPBEAT TIMES, INC. • November 2017 • 29
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