Hollyhock Tree, Empty Chair, Sea, Boat, and Me
Today, February 1, 2015 is my 66th Birthday. I can think of no better favorite photos to celebrate my Birthday than these four from one of my favorite holy spaces/learning centers/ and retreat Centers in the world: Hollyhock Retreat/Learning Center on Cortes Island in British Columbia, Canada.
I first attended when this sacred beautiful place was called Cold Mountain Institute and I spent 13 weeks there are as a “resident Fellow” in 1978? working on the retreat center and taking weeklong workshops on everything from “Tarot Carots” to “Kuan Yin: Goddess of Compassion” to “Dreams” and the “I Ching.”
My favorite photo for Birthdays and other new beginnings is my “Empty Chair, Sea, Boat, Tree, and Me” photo. The empty chair and empty boat wait for me (or you), in sunshine as tides turn and gentle waves lap gemtly to the shore in early morning sunshine. Beckoned.
Graceful, slow moving, herons in the early morning, with low tide and such blue waters, and forest, and mountains in the distance; these provide peaceful meditative moments that help make this place sacred and healing.
The gorgeous twisting shapes of trees silhouetted against blue incoming seas, and nearby islands, and the wooden deck where I, and many others, have laid nude in the summer sun over these many years. These bring back soft, warm, breeze memories, and memories of the sounds of water lapping to the shore.
The poppies, one in sunshine one in shade, yings and yangs of colors. Parchment thin colors, beauty. They dazzle me quietly with their sun opened color and brilliance.
Holy Hollyhock, Holy Cold Mountain. Thank you for helping shape me with your nature, and your beauty.