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January 26, 2013

What Lies Beneath

By Maryanna Gabriel

“Be humble for you are made of earth
 Be noble for you are made of stars.” Serbian Proverb

As above, so below, and my mind had been on the earth of late as I run around with my wheelbarrow filled with it preparing the garden for spring. Did you know that earth is not what it seems? There is an enormous sea far beneath us. I have recently learned that 500 kilometers below the earth’s surface, massive amounts of sea water soak the mantle. Further still there is molten rock. Imagine the impact as water meets fire. We have this illusion of permanence as we walk the surface, that the earth is something we can count on, but in the greater scheme of it all it is as changing and impermanent as we its temporal inhabitants. It is humbling when one grasps the grandeur and scope and certainly puts the price of milk in perspective. 

January 19, 2013

Bulwark For My Bones

By Maryanna Gabriel
Dolphin Playing In The Bay Of Islands
The dank days of January are upon us, Canadians expand wallets for formidable heating bills, and as smoke stacks curl, may be observed from time to time making furtive forays to the resident woodpile. It is at this time where some of us may recall with longing, the warmth and sun of the south, I in particular, the lovely blue sparkling Bay Of Islands in New Zealand where dolphins leap and play. The dolphins swim with such a sense of joy it is a reminder of the true essence of life and a reminder as well of childhood, where innocence was a beam of sunlight through an open window and the sweet fresh pure air was all around and where joy was a natural state of being. I recall this all as I steal myself for house exit, a disembarkation process of steeling myself against the gray freezing air, enshrouded in bulky clothing as a bulwark for my bones.

January 12, 2013

The Winter Of Our Content

By Maryanna Gabriel

“Let us love winter for it is the spring of genius.” Pietro Aretino
Spring Of Genius

The days are definitely getting longer. This is very good. One ponders such deeply disturbing questions as -  is there a vortex in the closet that is eating the missing duct tape, and will I ever use Tilex in my bathroom or should this bottle be jettisoned before it becomes an antique? Suddenly, charming dried flower arrangements from yesterdays garden glory look tawdry and certain piles are clearly intolerable. One asks oneself when exactly was the last deep clean as one stares at the darkened dusting cloth. You can see the new year puts a whole renewed perspective on the simplest of things. The arrangement of spring flowers brought to me as a gift by a friend, now growing on my dining room table, seem so hopeful and encouraging. This winter is already speeding by at an alarming rate and I am quite worried about nature’s progress in garden and forest here and my tardy address to certain key issues. I dream by my fire and remember that this time last year I was travelling down under through Tasmania and the regions of Australia that are now consumed by fires. It is a sobering thought. Change can happen so quickly and so unexpectedly.