Friday, March 30, 2007

A Sad Tern of Events (update)

After today's session of the I SPY TREES (the latest episode in the environmental video project I'm doing with children), I went over to Detta's house to check up on the tern I found the other day. I was dropping one of the little girls home, so she came with me to meet the tern.

Detta had told me that the bird was fighting to keep alive and that she felt it was battling poison. Initial tests had been done to find out what the problem might be: Avian Ifluenza tests were negative; X-rays showed no injuries.

When I saw the tern, she was lying on a heating pad in a cage, her beautiful long wings spread out at her sides. She was listless and looked smaller than when I had picked her up. She had been eating sardines before today, but as of today, was not taking anything in. I held her in my hands and noted that she was lighter, barely able to hold her neck up. Her body felt like it was almost empty of a spirit and the expression in her eyes indicated valiant efforts to remain alive. As she lay in my hand, a greenish liquid started to leak steadily from her beak (vomit).

We placed her back on the heating pad where she beat up for a while, propelling herself to the side of the cage, where her long beak could have gotten stuck in one of the holes (danger of neck breakage). Detta repositioned her to avoid this and, as she did so, the bird arched her neck forward, as if in in one last effort, and died ... within minutes of us arriving to check up on her.

Detta will send the little body for a necropsy. She said that this bird had held on long, compared to other sea birds that have been brought in to her ... all of which had similar symptoms (emaciation due to dehydration leading to death) and all of which turned out to have chronic liver damage (due to toxins). These toxins are undoubtedly industrial!

To those who are carelessly pumping industrial waste into our waters: Is this what you call 'development'? Is this what you favour so that your pockets can be fat with money?

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

A Tern on my Path

Yesterday I set out for my usual early morning walk. No sooner than 2 minutes into my walk, my eyes (which seem to be tuned in to seeing injured birds) landed on a strange looking bird lying in the carpark of a nearby school. It was a white and black bird with long wings spread out at its sides., looking like a Carnival Queen waiting to go on stage. It appeared to be a seagull, which is strange for an inland suburban/residential area. I approached, expecting it to fly away, but it didn't (couldn't). I noted that she was indeed a sea or water bird of some kind, with webbed feet.

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As I approached gently, speaking to her, she tried moving away, rapidly and clumsily, snapping her long, needle-like beak at me. Eventually I caught her, held her wings against her body to keep her still and took her home. Her heart was beating loudly, terrified ... probably having never been held by a human! I gave her some Reiki and she calmed down and closed her eyes, nestled in one of my old t-shirts.

I called Detta and described the bird to her. She sounded extremely concerned, telling me that this was rare but not unheard of - for a sea bird to be found incapacitated in a populated inland area. She explained that this was most likely due to poisoning (e.g. from industrial waste going into the sea) which affects many marine birds (and other creatures, of course). How it got so far inland we don't know!

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At Detta's instructions I took the bird to the Mout Hope Vet Hospital where she was tested for Avian Influenza (negative result) and then collected by Detta later in the day. Turns out that she is a Tern. At the latest report, she is doing well and is energised, but still incapable of flight. I will know as soon as Detta discovers what is wrong with her. Haven't named her yet. Any suggestions?

Anyway ... most likely she was poisoned. This is abominable! From my discussion with Detta ... the amount of animals being poisoned by industrial waste! We see the effects of the poisons in smaller animals first, but we are being poisoned too. And they want to build smelters on top of it all?!

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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Rollerdisco fun!

The other day a friend of mine from Miami was spending a week with me. One evening we were looking for something to do/somewhere to go out ... and could think of nothing other than the 'typical' which we didn't feel for (bars, clubs, cinema). I said (and she agreed with me): "You know what would be fun? If there was a rollerdisco!"

Some days later, when she had left, I was going for my usual morning walk and saw some large flyers emblazoned all over the walls by the busroute. They were advertising "Hy Voltage" ... a new rollerdisco above Pizza Boys in Arima! It was as if the genie in the bottle had heard me ask for a rollerdisco.

I called the number and a woman told me it's $40 to enter and rent a pair of skates ("you must wear clean tube socks") and $30 if you have your own skates (I have my own). She said they are open from 4 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. for children and from thereafter to 5 a.m. for adults. But from what she said, I got the feeling the grownups weren't as into it - they tend to stand around looking on at the children (chaperones) or, later on, stand about having drinks and observing a handfull of skaters.

I understand that skating is not everyone's cup of tea, but for me it raises the question again: why do some (most?) 'grownups' here lose that sense of simple fun?


Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Open Door

Today wonderful,
wonder-filling things
walk through my open door.
And yours.


Monday, March 26, 2007

Found Objects: The haunted typewriter

I couldn't think of anything to write, yet felt like writing something ... so decided to close my eyes and click on the list of 'labels' I've created so far. The mouse landed on 'Found Objects'.

What can I say about found objects? There was a time when most of my art was craeted from found objects. Then when I got more into photography and video I stopped picking up things.

Once I picked up an old typewriter from the side of the road going up to Mount St. Benedict. I thought it could be used as part of an interesting piece. When I picked it up, it was surprisingly much heavier than it looked. I washed it out under the standpipe and noted with disgust the human hair being flushed out from under the keys. Upon seeing that, my feeling to use it diminished drastically.

That night as I slept I was awoken by the sound of the rapid click-clack of trypewriter keys just by my bed. Even with my eyes open I was still hearing it, but the sound faded as my consciousness became clearer/I became more awake.

The next morning I took the typewriter down to the garbage disposal point at the corner of the street. I was cautious about what I picked up after that.


Saturday, March 24, 2007

Perspectives in the Park

Yesterday afternoon I went to meet a friend, a film maker who is here from Toronto. As I waited for her to emerge from the building, I went into a nearby park. There were children on the roundabout and on the swings, with adults pushing them. I wanted to go on the roundabout but felt it would be better to do so when it was empty.

Instead, I went and sat on one of the swings and began swinging. The teenage girl on the swing next to me gave me a quizzical aren't-you-too-big-to-be-swinging stare (even though she was pratically my size) and then turned away. I continued swinging as I waited, observing the birds and people in the park.

A man with grey hair was bouncing on a four-pronged see-sawish contraption with three children. He was laughing and obviously having as good a time as they were. It looked like great fun. As soon as she saw him, a teenage girl near a bench called out to the one next to me and a few other females around: "Allyuh look de old man! Look de old man!" ... as though he was a freak in a circus. They then started laughing ... not with him, but at him.

The 'old man' soon after got off the contraption and was spinning children on the mery-go-round. He was running and spinning and laughing, very fit for his age. Maybe he was about 65? I thought it was great to see someone so 'old' having such fun and looking so happy. Why must one lose the ability to enjoy the things of childhood just because you've crossed 18? To some people (like those teenage girls who didn't look anywhere near as happy as he did and were so busy texting on their cellular phones), he probably looked crazy or retarded.


Friday, March 23, 2007

3 - 5 working days ...

Yesterday morning my phone was working as normal. I went out and got back home after midday and it was completely dead. This is inconvenient not only because of not being able to make/receive phonecalls, but also the DSL connection is affected.

I called TSTT via my cellular and was given the usual mantra about someone coming to do repairs in '3 - 5 working days'. The last time I had phone-related problems it was more like 3 - 5 working weeks before anyone solved the issue. I thought to myself that if they had 'competition', repairs would happen in 3 - 5 hours ... maybe even minutes?

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Showing the Soul Window

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Before, I wasn't going to show the full lamp, but now I will. Some pieces are not shown in the image (e.g. the interactive bouquet, which is silhouetted and somewhat visible in the 'lit' shot). In all of its basicness and simplicity, there's a lot of symbolism in this lamp, but I won't get into the details (of the symbols, 'missions', etc.). It's a lot to get into ... and, even though it may all be interesting, the realness of it was and is in the actual interaction with and experience of it ... not in the documentation of it.
As a result, while I could have shown the whole thing and explained in detail during the documentation process (as with the other lamps), I never felt like doing so for this one.
I imagine soon it will be arriving at its new home in Houston and the owner(s) will photograph it ... and it may look different from how it looks in these shots. But for now, here it is - photographed just before I left home on the day I took it to the hotel.
Not sure why I'm showing it today, but it just feels like the day to show it.


Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Sighing gentle wind
Resting quiet cloud in sky
Breathing you and I
Gentle wind sighing
Quiet cloud resting in sky
You and I breathing
Gentle sighing wind
In quiet sky resting cloud
I ... you ... and breathing
Wind sighing gentle
Sky quiet in resting cloud
And I breathing you.

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This week's Sunday Scribblings prompt is Inspiration

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Some of the heart shaped stones (and leaf) I found at the silent retreat this weekend. I usually find lots of heart shaped natural things, but this weekend in particular they jumped out at me everywhere as I walked on the beach, the grass or the road. There were so many that after a while I stopped picking them up. Even on my walk this morning, practically every time I looked down there was a heart-shaped something ... a stone, a leaf, an oil stain on the road, a hole, a dark spot of pitch ...

The thing that inspires me is Love. At the core of everything I do or am drawn to is Love in some aspect - the presence of it, the seeming absence of it, the quest for it, the desire for it, the finding of it, the feeling of it (or not), Love of self, love of someone, love of something, love of Spirit, etc etc etc. The list could go on. Both subconsciously and consciously Love is what drives me because at the core of me is always the desire to be it, have it and know it. I find it difficult if not impossible to do something meaningful and true without it.

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Monday, March 19, 2007

Silent sunrise

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View from the balcony


Thursday, March 15, 2007


Shell on Toco Beach

From today (Thursday) to Sunday I will be at a silent retreat in Toco. I will therefore not be updating the blog until next week.
Take care.


Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Early morning visit from a friend

At 5:30 a.m. I had already been up for a while and was lying on my bed absorbed in writing something. Suddenly on the paper there was the shadow of something flying around my room. I looked up, expecting to see one of those large black moths. But no - it was a bat. It had most likely come in on its own. (Normally when they find themselves in my room it's courtesy Jasper). When I saw it I felt happy to see it, like seeing an old friend. This isn't normally my response upon seeing a bat in the house ... (I remember, as children, screaming and hiding under the bed with my sisters and not coming out until Daddy came to remove the creature) ... but after being among so many bats the other evening, I somehow felt a new kind of connection. I even thought (jokingly): "Have you flown all the way from Tamana?"

Also , since having had Rainbow on that personal basis, I realise I've developed a different view of (and feeling for) for flying creatures. Seeing Rainbow develop and finally fly free made me really feel and appreciate that process - both for her (and flying creatures in general) and for myself.

Interestingly, what I was writing as I lay in my bed had to do with inner and outer transformation. It's as if the little bat had popped in just to confirm that everything is transforming greatly.

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Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Don we now our gay apparel

Apparently the 'acknowledged and unrepentent homosexual' Elton John's 'visit to the island' to perform at the Tobago Jazz Festival 'can open the country to be tempted towards pursuing his lifestyle.' (See the below pasted and copied newspaper article). When a friend of mine told me last night that religious people in Tobago were in an outcry over Elton John's coming to Tobago because of his sexuality I thought she was joking.

This morning there is the most recent article (apparently there have been ongoing debates) on the subject. According to the article, T & T is the only place in the world that has ever called for a ban on Elton John because of his sexuality. Hmmm ...

"Members of the public who called in to radio programmes gave reasons of moral and spiritual value while one person claimed that there is an immigration law banning confessed homosexuals and lesbians from entering the country." (Source).

Er ... is it also illegal to be born, bred and living in the country?


Tobago Christians say no to gay Elton John
Elizabeth W Allard Tobago Bureau
Sunday, March 11th 2007

Various sections of Tobago's Christian community are calling for the banning of Sir Elton John from performing at the third annual Plymouth Jazz Festival scheduled from April 27 to 29.

John, an acknowledged and unrepentant homosexual, is one of the festival's biggest draws, and Tourism Secretary Neil Wilson has countered that John is coming to perform and not to transfer his beliefs to the wider community.

In any case, Wilson said, let who is without sin cast the first stone.

However, Archdeacon Phillip Isaac, insists that John's lifestyle does not abide by what the Bible says, and firmly stands by the Christian principle that a man should not lie with a man.

He continued, "The artiste is one of God's children and while his lifestyle is questionable he needs to be ministered unto. His visit to the island can open the country to be tempted towards pursuing his lifestyle."

Isaac further stated that whether or not John is allowed to come to the island to perform, the religious communities need to cover their congregations spiritually.

Pastor of the People's Pentecostal Church, Glenroy Frank, said the controversy over John coming to perform in Tobago is a bit hypocritical since the very same church has endorsed gays as priests. In addition to this, he pointed out, several priests, both locally and internationally, have been charged with sexual crimes against children.

Frank however emphasised that he stands by the word of God which condemns homosexuality.
His message to John is to accept Jesus Christ into his life, and change his ways.

CL Communication's CEO, Tony Maharaj, who at this time is in Los Angeles, USA, making final confirmation of artistes, told the Sunday Express that John will be performing on April 29.

His being a homosexual should not prevent him from performing as an entertainer. He is not coming to preach, he insisted, "and nothing has changed with respect to him performing".

Comments from members of the public are below that article)


Monday, March 12, 2007


I feel I am still
I feel I am still moving
I feel I am still
(This week's One Deep Breath)

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Sunday, March 11, 2007

Dream Journey (includes video)

This week's Sunday Scribblings prompt is Dream Journey.

at this junction of my journey,
hundreds of thousands of bats
come rushing to help me ...
to know my way,
as they do,
through the darkness
of what appears
to be unkown.
The road leads
to where
and how
and who
I am
to be
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On Friday evening, three friends and I went to Tamana caves, filled with 500 thousand to 3 million bats .
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for short video of the bats flying out of the mouth of the cave.
Just after sunset, hundreds of thousands of bats fly out, going at such a speed that they almost appear to be static on the screen (see above video). I had filmed them in the forested semi darkness using the video function on my digital camera, so it's not too clear, but gives a good idea.
Moving about in a new environment may feel like a rebirth. Though this is an exciting concept, in reality it can be disorienting and frightening. Bat helps to move through the necessary shedding of the old and embracing of the new. One special guidance tool it symbolically offers is sonar navigation. Like Dolphin, Bat uses echolocation to guide it, and one of the most lovely sights on a summer night is a graceful bat ballet. So if we study and attune to Bat, we can learn to swoop with grace through transformation and rebirth, trusting that our own inner guidance system will help us find our way. (Source)

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Thursday, March 08, 2007

Resting in Peace

Dear All,after putting heart and soul into the soul window ... I will not be blogging for a while. In the mean time, check out this post by Karen, one of the three new owners of the Soul Window. Funny how she also has not yet shown it in its entirety. But in the featured post she gives some details from a personal perspective and provides another glimpse. Take care all and see you when I get back.



Monday, March 05, 2007

Souls meeting for Grasshopper Goodbyes

I've come to know with surety that each Lamp goes to the right person/people/place. Last night I stood in the carpark of the Hilton with the Soul Window and her new owners, handing over. They had cleverly walked with a torchlight to test out the effects of the lamp (as much as one can without the 'real' light behind it). It felt special.

I will link you to the new-owner-taken photos (taken last night in the carpark) whenever she puts them up. Something about that lamp has thus far invited us to just take photos of its special parts and to not show not its whole ... (yet?)

As we stood there for what felt like a long time, talking, there were a few times when grasshoppers landed - first on the lamp (top right pane first, heading through the ripples toward the heart stone) and then at other points landing on us and even at one point almost flying straight into my mouth for dinner.

The insistent present of the grasshopper seemed like a message for all of us, so I looked it up ...

The Grasshopper as a power animal:
One of the gifts these insects hold is the power of song and sound. Song is an ancient way to alter consciousness and communicate with our animal and spirit relations. Some Native American songs date back at least 20,000 years. If these insect singers have caught your attention with their song, they may be asking you to honor your ancestors and reconnect with your true heritage. Listening and responding to your inner voice as well as using it in a complimentary way towards self and others is equally important.
The grasshopper-locust is associated with astral travel. They have the ability to leap through time and into space where the true mysteries of life exist. People with this medicine have the wisdom necessary to overcome obstacles efficiently and are able to jump into successful ventures without preparation or planning. When the grasshopper-locust appears to us we are being asked to take a leap of faith and jump forward into a specific area of life without fear. Usually that specific area is one that we have avoided and is often connected to change on a larger scale. This can represent a change in location, relationships, career or just in the way we perceive ourselves.

Bon Voyage and Thank You!

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Sunday, March 04, 2007

The End is the Beginning

It feels like a longer time has passed since everything began.
This isn't anything that I expected it would be ...
although I came expecting nothing.

Simple and colourful yet complex and plain ... childlike innocence with aged knowing ... playful and serious ... still and moving ... growing and changing, yet remaining the same. One thing with the light on and another thing with the light off. What seems to be just 'this' is actually 'that' as well ...

With Love and Gratitude,
I complete this Lamp.
It is wonder-full.


Saturday, March 03, 2007

Fullness within. Fullness without.

The Soul Window is almost finished.

I have not gone into detailed descriptions about this particular Lamp, as I did with Diva for example. It somehow defied description and full images, which to me would have limited it. Even though it is a visual piece, it seems to be more experiential - to be experienced in person.

For me, I just feel as though the process carved out a space. For what, I'm not entirely sure. I am empty and slightly drained (as I often feel after making a lamp) ... but in a full way, knowing that it had to be done.


Friday, March 02, 2007

Let Go(d)

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(The first pane)
Today I am letting go of the Soul Window. And by this I don't mean that it is finished (it isn't yet) or that it is going to its new owners today (... for those of you who don't know, early on at this stage someone did reach out and ask for it and at some point soon it will be flying over the waters and going to its new home with them ...).
The journey through the Soul Window has been fun, interesting, intense (in ways that I won't bother to go into) and powerful. There were times when I went with the flow, felt empowered and connected and believed in great things being possible ... times when I felt stuck, confused, doubtful, questioning and drained ... times when I loved what the window was turning out to be and thought it was the best one ever, times when I looked at it and thought "Oh no! What have I done?!"
I woke up today and felt with surety "Let go". I am not quite sure what this means yet, but it is what I am prepared to do.
There are certain things to be done by the new owners of the window (some were done and a few are yet to be done). I've called these things 'missions' ... i.e. simple, fun interactive missions that they were asked to carry out ... to activate and unlock the symbolic energy of each pane of the Soul Window. I imagine when these missions are accomplished, whatever is to be set in motion in the grand scheme of things will be ... in the perfect way, perfect timing.
I hereby open the Soul Window and let Go(d).

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

From seed to bloom

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The Soul Window continues to unfold and, meanwhile, so did this. One of the sunflower seeds I had planted on the first of January 2007 opened fully today on the first of March. It seems to be a small variety, so they are only a few inches high. There are only three left out of many (due to the cat that sat on them and crushed them). The other two will bloom within the next few days. Their buds are full.

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