Monthly Archives: February 2010

Guest Slot: a new Scottish poet on the block….Carole Bone

In the late 1990s Carole Bone turned up in my daytime astrology class: red hair, big eyes, bright mind, very eager to learn, fast talker, very hard to keep her quiet. Irrepressible. A great student to teach. Ten years on, and I was at last emerging  from my 2001-8 retreat. Carole had just left my house, staggering under the weight of a bag full of poetry books…. T.S.Eliot, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Dylan Thomas, Archy and Mehitabel, e e cummings, Anne Stevenson, Tom Leonard, Liz Lochead.….she had kept in touch throughout my time out, sending messages of support, sending me her poems to read. She is a born writer. I remember thinking that day  “She’ll be getting published before long.”

Here is her first published poem.

Lilith and the Devil

My thoughts are dark like Lilith’s night
My dreams like Vincent’s crows in flight
Despair my enemy – my comrade
Are shadows real or just charade

The Devil grins and winks at me
Come dance with me and you will see
Dance with the Devil quick quick slow
Better the Devil that you know

Like an old friend he stands by me
And promises to set me free
Cut my bonds and free my soul
Just pay the ferryman his toll

Pandora’s box of dark delights
Tempt me in the Moon dark nights
Delicious pain won’t let me go
It comforts and torments me so

And when at last released to light
Still feel the teasing sultry night
Call me like a secret love
Iron hand in velvet glove

The Devil laughs and speaks to me
Of all these things to help me see
That angels know these things I know
For as above is so below

(From Wiki: Lilith (Hebrew: ליליתLīlīt; Arabic: ليليثLīlīṯ) is a female Mesopotamian storm demon associated with wind and was thought to be a bearer of disease, illness, and death. The figure of Lilith first appeared in a class of wind and storm demons or spirits as Lilitu, in Sumer, circa 4000 BC. Many scholars place the origin of the phonetic name “Lilith” at somewhere around 700 BC despite post-dating even to the time of Moses.[1] Lilith appears as a night demon in Jewish lore and as a screech owl in Isaiah 34:14 in the King James version of the Bible. In later folklore, “Lilith” is the name for Adam‘s first wife.)

“Lilith and the Devil” was first published in The Mountain Astrologer magazine (USA) – Issue No. 140, Aug/Sept 2008

(Carole’s next poem to be published is “Sisterectomy” – in the Poetry Anthology 2010 published by United Press Ltd – not due out till Spring 2010)

Carole Bone

Carole Bone

carolebone@hotmail.co.uk

Carole’s Biog : …. mother of two magic boys – wife for thirty three years to a Capricorn who is without doubt my rock.  Would be astrologer; this subject has kept me (relatively) sane by helping me to understand the contradictory pulls existing in my nature between the home-loving dreamer and the restless seeker after knowledge. And – a shy Virgo Rising….

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ps….I am delighted to report that ‘Lilith and the Devil’ was re-published on 16.3.10 on the Write Anything site as part of a fine reflective piece by Carole, offering advice to would-be poets. To read it, and some more comments on Carole’s work, check out

http://writeanything.wordpress.com/2010/03/16/lillith-and-the-devil/

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550 words copyright Carole Bone/ Anne Whitaker 2010
Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page


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Kreativ Blogger Awards 2010

It is not Xmas. It is not New Year. It is not Valentine’s Day. It is still cold in the Northern Hemisphere. It is not yet Spring. So I thought I’d introduce a note of  celebration and good cheer this week, by posting Anne Whitaker’s Kreativ Blogger Awards 2010.

 

Kreativ Blogger Awards 2010

Kreativ Blogger Awards 2010

 

 

Thanks first of all to my cyber-pal from Georgia, the prestigious and prolific blogger extraordinaire Jude Cowell, for including ‘Writing from the Twelfth House’ in her list of Kreativ Blogger Awards for 2010. A list of all Jude’s blogs encompassing art, astrology and fearlessly outspoken politics, as well as her selection of January 2010 KB Awards, can be found here:

 

Krehttp://www.starsoverwashington.com/2010/01/kreativ-blogger-award-for-stars-over.html

Now here are the 6 rules for the Kreativ Blogger Award which you will need to follow if you are chosen:

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1. Copy/paste the Kreativ Blogger Award picture onto your blog
2. Thank the person who awarded it to you and post a link to her/his blog
3. Write 7 things about yourself we do not know
4. Choose 7 other bloggers to award
5. Link to them
6. Notify your 7 bloggers of their award

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7 things about me you ( unless you are one of my family/friends/former astrology students in which case you have probably heard it all before TOO many times!) do not know:

1. I have far too many planets in Leo.

2. Just as well they’re in the Twelfth House!

3. I was actually born in the 12th House – 12, Plantation Road – on the street in which my parents were living at that time

4. My birth was so premature and I was so tiny that I was anointed in olive oil, wrapped carefully and placed in a drawer – too small for a cot – and not expected to live. Wrong!!!

5. I have my Honourable Discharge Papers from the British Merchant Navy

6. At a time when I was utterly dismissive of astrology, an astrologer I met by accident in a launderette drew up my chart and predicted that I would become an astrologer in my early thirties. Right!!!

7. I am still asking the same question I started asking when I first opened my eyes to the world: “Why are we here?”(answers, under a plain wrapper, to this site. Reward for most original response)

That’s enough of that! Here are my Kreativ Blogger Award recipients, in alphabetical order. As Jude Cowell has pointed out, there are a considerable number of  high quality blogs on the Web, and I am acutely aware of only knowing a small selection well enough to nominate them. A large part of the purpose of this award is to encourage our community to spread the net by our own nominations, enabling other great bloggers to have their work picked out and highlighted.

Kreativ Blogger Awards 2010

Kreativ Blogger Awards 2010

 

1. Dawn Bodrogi – runs a new blog in town, less than a year old. But it is full of thoughtful, quality writing from an accomplished astrologer and teacher. Check Dawn out at The Inner Wheel – Living with Astrology

2. Jude Cowell – a generous spirit, sharp and funny – already mentioned and linked! Find Jude, in true Mercurial style, in several places, including Jude’s Threshold

3. Donna Cunningham – will already be known to many of you as a world class astrologer, writer and teacher – and is now a brilliant blogger at her  SkyWriter blog. Check out her online writing seminars at Moon Maven Publications, along with her books in e-book form or hard copy. I hope to be featuring Donna’s writing on my Guest slot next month.

4. Lauren Lesko is the most sensitive and lyrical writer on astrological topics that I have had the pleasure to come across and to befriend – and a most generous soul. Check out her writing, and the beautiful art which accompanies it, at  ASTROLOGY: the art of awareness

5. Joyce Mason felt like a fellow spirit from the start, and I love her writing – fresh, deep and often very, very funny.  Her Chiron and Wholeness: A Primer is a must for all astrology students, and a great reference tool for practising astrologers, informed as it is by Joyce’s lengthy research and reflection on the Chiron archetype. She has several quality blogs, the main one being The Radical Virgo

6. Susannah combines deep, sensitive and insightful articles with art and poetry. In her own words: “I explore astrology with my poems, images and observations. I hope that maybe you can identify with some of it!” Check out her work – and her selection of blogs! – at  The Lion and the Lightning Bolt

7. Leah Whitehorse is a multi-talented musician and writer, with special interest in working with tarot and with dreams as well as astrology. I am hoping to have a piece from her on working with dreams on my Guest slot this Spring. Visit her at  Lua Astrology – Navigation by the Stars

I’m flouting the rules ( Mars/Uranus in the Tenth House – I like rule-breaking!) with an extra nominaton – one non-astrologer:

Linda Leinem is a writer whose work I discovered very early on in my own blogging career. I was absolutely knocked out by the quality of her writing; here, to give something of the flavour both of Linda’s rich inner and outer life, and her writing themes, is a little clip from the About Me page on her blog:

“Sharing stories, trading secrets, weaving new realities of threads pulled from discarded memories or long forgotten dreams – those are the tasks of a new writer, dedicated to new endeavors.

Living a quiet and hidden life, anchored to my dock like a barnacle to a piling, I varnish boats on the Texas Gulf Coast.  My dock provides both things Virginia Woolf recommended for a woman who writes: money, from the labor, and a room of my own – space and solitude for thought, remembrance, and creative reflection on the truths and mysteries of life.”

I never fail to find affirmation and inspiration in her wonderful writing – her blog gathers many comments, and when you visit  The Task at Hand you will understand why….

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1000 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2010
Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page

On reaching thirty – ‘forging the diamond soul’

As followers of this site will know, I went through a profoundly testing – though ultimately enriching – descent into the Underworld and slow return during the period 2001-8. During this time of retreat I had to give up a busy and successful freelance career, and simply rest, grateful to be nurtured by my loved ones, until my life force returned. Reading and writing were major sustaining gifts – as was a deepening spirituality. I had the time to draft a memoir of my emerging spiritual life up until the age of thirty; not as a continuous narrative, but as a series of key episodes.

It is my intention from time to time to publish some extracts from the memoir, provisionally titled “Swimmer in a secret sea” on this site.

In the meantime, here are some of my musings from the Introduction to that memoir, as I reflect on the great significance of those first thirty formative years in all our lives.

(Although this post is intended for the general reader, those of you who are astrologers will recognise this archetypal thirty-year point as the first Saturn Return.)

If you are approaching turning thirty and finding it hard going, take heart! I have come across many people amongst my counselling clients, students and astrology clients for whom the period of 28-30 was very, very tough. They were certainly hard years for me. But most of us can look back and say “well, that was when I really began to grow up – life is much better now!”

The Diamond Soul

We truly are unique, each one of us. Only one person can live out your or my particular story. But there are certain archetypal experiences which most of us go through in the vital thirty years where we lay the building blocks for our future development as useful adults.

Inspiring people – if we are lucky, members of our own family as well as those met along the road – appear. Experiences which wake us up to new realities come our way. There are challenges or tests which we cope with as best we can. There are questions which are seemingly unanswerable, but will not go away. The longing to feel part of something greater than ourselves tugs at many of us. Deaths of loved ones in early life mark us deeply.

Intense love affairs can turn out well or badly. Friendships are forged which can deeply sustain and comfort us, in which we can show the best as well as the worst facets of who we are. Relationships with parents are revealed in varying contexts, leading us to a more realistic perspective on both sides.

We begin to realise that our most valuable educational experiences probably take place outwith academic institutions. We develop ambitions and set about trying to fulfil them. We deal with the raw joy of being alive, as well as the depths of its pain. We encounter the love that nurtures us, and the wounds that may make us wise in time.

From this long, testing and often painful process of submerging our dreams, questions and ideals in the acid bath of life as it actually is, hopefully we emerge with a good enough balance of optimism, resilience and mature realism to enable us slowly to begin to separate out from what we are never going to become. In this way, we begin to grow more fully into who it is we actually are, having taken a step further towards what the Buddhists call ‘forging the diamond soul‘ …

NOTE!

USA’s  bi-monthly The Mountain Astrologer magazine is recognised as being one of the world’s best quality astrology publications. They will shortly be producing and selling a CD featuring the Editor’s Choice of the best articles which The Mountain Astrologer published during the 1990s. I am pleased to say that the article I wrote in 1998, which features an astrological perspective on life’s thirty-year cycles: “The Cycles of Saturn: forging the Diamond Soul”, will be appearing in that collection. Those of you readers who are astrologers or astrology students, keep checking the site for details! As far as I know, the CD should be available from March 2010.

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UPDATE: the CD came out on 13 October 2010. For details, click on link below!

An autumnal treat from ‘The Mountain Astrologer’ magazine

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……and the memoir, “Swimming in a secret sea” is now published. Click HERE to read it.

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700 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2010
Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page

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