Sunday, September 6, 2020

The Covid Life

We are out and about a bit more now. Masks, of courses, and physical distancing. Hand sanitizer everywhere, the runny kind. Fewer hugs. 

Reiki and Reiki classes canceled. Distance only. Reiki on hold. 

What about schools, parks, museums, concerts, and restaurants? Limited, closed, closed forever, gone. So many people and pastimes gone. Instead we have screenings, staycations, and sanitizers. We have people getting mad about masks, like it's a personal freedom to spread infection. People who believe COVID-19 is a myth. Crazy times. At least there is toilet paper in the grocery store now, but it's the thin pandemic toilet paper, like you get in a gas station or at a turnpike rest stop.

Kids are getting homeschooled, or going to school just a couple of days a week.  School openings are delayed. Schools are opening, then closing. College kids getting kicked out of school for attending a party. 

An outbreak from a wedding: the pastor shuns masks, he gathers his choir of long-skirted long-haired women and bearded men weekly in large gasping groups; the outbreak is associated with nearly 150 COVID cases and three deaths. 

Crazy times. But life goes on, with gorgeous late summer days, small careful gatherings, an election, fall harvest, and Halloween decorations. Those who can, work from home. We all hope for a safe and effective vaccine that will be free and widely available. Hoping and waiting for better times for all. 

Friday, July 10, 2020


Mostly, like now, it's quiet. Very very quiet. I can hear the faint whir of the propane refrigerator, the chirp of a bird, and... that is all. The loudest sound here is the chugging of the lobster boats. The boats head out around 5 am, about the time I like to wake up. They chug around the bay intermittently throughout the day and are mostly back around 2 pm. At least, that is how it's been this week. Maybe they go out and return around the same time every day, maybe their schedules change with the tides or the seasons; I don't know. I also don't know how they can set out in the damp opaque fog. If I were a lobsterfisherperson, I would want to wait for a sunny warm morning with long clear views.

Other noises here are seagulls calling, red squirrels chattering, and cormorants flapping as they take flight from the surface of the bay. It's quiet. I like quiet. Quiet is soothing, restful, and peaceful. Quiet is conducive to Reiki reflections.

There are lots of noises back at my house. The neighbors are bikers and have lots of biker friends and there is the blasting roar of Harleys at all hours. One day there was a biker funeral gathering. Without warning, 35 Harleys exploded up the street. Bikes and big loud pickup trucks parked all up and down the street, blocking driveways, mailboxes, and trash waiting for pickup. There were stacks of pizza boxes on tables on the front lawn. The mourners gathered in the middle of the street and on the lawn, sipping bottled beer and eating slices. The bikers I've spoken to have all been friendly and courteous. Other home noises are oil delivery trucks, fast loud cars, sirens, honking package and meal deliveries, and the hospital helicopter. Dogs bark all day, all evening, every day. None of that here. 

It was noisy the other night. There was a terrific storm with thunder, lightning, wind, and rain. A hard rain fell. The windows rattled, rain pounded on the roof and deck, the sky flashed with diffuse light, and all the rocking chairs on the deck pitched forward and back as if inhabited by frantic caffeinated ghosts. The windows streamed with rivulets, like being in a carwash. It seemed like I was in a boat, in a storm at sea. I looked across the bay and saw a pink sunset behind storm clouds. Above me, a tempest. 

It is quiet here. 

Thursday, July 9, 2020


I was walking on a beach when I heard a bark. I turned around, expecting to see a dog. I did see a brown creature, and thought, briefly, that it was a large dog. It was a deer. It was four deer in a meadow. We watched each other for a while, then they continued to graze.

The beach was on an island, off another island; it was a two-bridge-island beach. I was the only human on the beach. COVID-19 dented the touristy influx, and drizzly 50-degree weather kept away the wise locals. So just me and the deer in the meadow. And the yellow rockweed, purple irises, large soft-edged slabs of pink granite, gray sky and waves, raucous crows, soaring seagulls, and bobbing daisies. The beach was U-shaped, with sand at the nadir of the U and pink granite sides. The spruce and pine forest came right down to the granite on one side, the other side was a bog and a long stretch of flat granite shoreline. There was a yellow boulder, shaped like a corn muffin. Lobster boats chugged past. The beach was a good place for buried thoughts to come bubbling up for inspection, but after four months of COVID isolation, I'm pretty much cleaned out of repressed memories and regrets.

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Police Force -> Peace Force

Black Lives Matter.

What if we had a Peace Force instead of a Police Force? Officers would be educated on holding space instead of chokeholds. Officers would be educated on first aid, conflict resolution, recognizing symptoms of illness, anger management, Reiki, yoga, and meditation. Officers would hold their hands open for healing, instead of carrying sticks and guns. Officers would live in their communities and interact peacefully with citizens.

We need a Peace Force.

We also need systemic equality, income equality, clean air, green energy, more parks, and more education. We need Peace, not war, not a militarized police force. We need peace and love on our beautiful Earth.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Small Voice, by Roland Flint

Originally published in Dakotah Territory 3, 1972.
It was my dream, and I remember telling it to him, and I must have been 6 years old, maybe 5.
I came downstairs in the morning and he was there, in the kitchen.
So I told him and he wrote it down at least 10 years before it was published in Dakotah Territory.
I remember trying to remember the word for those green things- olives.

Roland Flint
Small Voice

All night long
we were in the refrigerator - -
Kate and you and I and
milk and eggs and
those green things - - olives, And
it was warm and we laughed and
then someone opened the door,

And afterward we were all angels.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Reiki is Do Nothing

When sharing Reiki in a hands-on or distance practice, do nothing. Be nothing, just be.

You might notice thoughts, visions, or impressions; let them float by. Don't try to block or pursue the thoughts; do nothing. Don't even share the thoughts with the client- your thoughts are your own, part of your own journey. Your client's thoughts, visions, and impressions are their journey. When sharing Reiki, you are a therapeutic presence for the client. Support their journey, not your own.

Be a therapeutic listener, a witness, and a nonjudgmental presence. Place your hands, fall into Reiki, and just be there. Do nothing.

Doing nothing is also doing everything. Use every bit of knowledge and experience. Apply ethical principles, support the client's insights, and be a kind loving presence. Do nothing and everything.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Pandemic Time

I have my routines. I walk at sunrise and go to bed when it gets dark. I wash sheets and towels on Sundays. I do New York Times puzzles every morning before answering emails, grading papers, and doing my own schoolwork.

I listen to our state CDC report every afternoon at 2 pm. It's on the radio. Our Dr. Shah is magnificent: calm, compassionate, intelligent, and patient.

Mostly though, time is fluid. I lose track of the time of day, the day of the week, the month, and sometimes even the season. Easy to lose track of the season when it snows in May.

The days go by slow; the days go by fast.