Tag Archives: W B Yeats

Exploring “Spirited Ageing”

Two weeks into the New Year and I have finished reading my first book for 2014, albeit one I started some time back, in 2013. The book, which I have been reading, at a very leisurely pace, is  Spirited Ageing ~cultivating the art of renewal   ~ by  Juliet Batten .

Juliet, in her book, tackles, with a delightful combination of grace and common sense, the subject of preparing for one’s old age. She invites the us “into the adventure of conscious ageing”  and  provides basic, easy-to-follow, strategies to help us discover our source of energy,  the “illumination” or “regenopause”, upon which  we can draw  to fuel  a ‘ vibrant’ and ‘expansive’ old age. She also invites us to, amongst other things,  care for the soul, do new things constantly, identify treasure and clutter, bring creativity into our lives, and to focus on increasing the  renewable *spirit* of our being, as our physical capacity diminishes.

Clap your hands and sing

Clap your hands and sing

With Juliet’s suggestions in mind, I have been enriching my spirit, in recent days,  by researching  a post I meant to write more than a week ago; a post to acknowledge the closure of one Christmas season on January 6th and   the beginning of  another; that of the Coptic Churches, on  January 7th. I would have gotten to this *work* sooner, if it weren’t for those mayhem-making Moments you may remember from my previous post 😉 . However, when the subject of the post is of a  millennial vintage, a delay of a moment or two, or three ,or four, is neither here nor there.

So, with research completed, here is that delayed post, which has two parts:

Part One;

a visit to  the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland  to gaze upon  the Museum’s collection of Ethiopian illuminated manuscripts and icons;

Diptych Icon with Saint George, and Mary and the Infant Christ

Diptych Icon with Saint George, and Mary and the Infant Christ : Early 15th Century, Tempera on Wood

The Walters Art Museum has “one of the largest collections of manuscripts, icons and processional crosses outside of Ethiopia. Historically, Ethiopia was a Christian kingdom with strong ties in both trade and religion to the cultures located around the Mediterranean. Ethiopia’s Christian tradition dates back to the 4th century, when the ruler of the Aksumite kingdom converted to Christianity; by the 15th century, this African nation had developed a tradition of icon painting that rivaled that of the Orthodox empires.http://art.thewalters.org/browse/category/ethiopia/

and Part Two;

an introduction to the three books I will be reading, now that I have finished “Spirited Ageing”. All three books are by  Elizabeth E Wein ~ The Winter PrinceA Coalition of Lions and The Sunbird. They are visually beautiful books and lovely to hold, as well. I am eager to stretch my imagination and  embark on the adventures they promise in ancient, mythical lands.

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But, in case, you should think, with this post, that I am already lost to  those most ancient of days, I am pleased to report  some relatively recent news, which is  that the city of Vancouver has banned doorknobs in all apartment buildings and   private homes to be built after March 2014. http://www.vancouversun.com/story.html?id=9173543  They will be required to have easier-to-use, universal design levers. That’s the spirit Vancouver City! May I come and spend my old age with you?  🙂

© silkannthreades



In Dreams begin Responsibilities*

A little while back  Sophia Stuart (and her virtual self teamgloria  )  walked away from the fast lane……

Walking away from the fast lane

Walking away from the fast lane

which must explain why I found her/them, last week, at a small post shop in quiet, suburban Christchurch.

In the quiet suburbs

In the quiet suburbs

I was very surprised to see her there (that’s me in the window, not her), because we are awfully far away from her home in Los Angeles. But there she was, and she had obviously travelled very s l o w l y, possibly by sea, because her departure date was stamped November, and, even in our little backwater, it is already December ;). Because it is such a long way from over there, in the Northern Hemisphere,  to here, however one travels, and because teamgloria ** is one of my best blogging friends, I thought it only polite to invite  tg’s** who-she-is-in-real life-persona, Sophia, home for a spot of tea. So I scooped her up (she does say she is small) and home we went.  Sophia is used to driving about in a perfectly silver Prius but our transportation, though silver, is more modest :)…. a tiny Echo aka motoka kiwikiwi.

Since I was not expecting guests, I  had only a simple cup of tea (rooibos, it was)  to offer, but I was sure Sophia wouldn’t mind. So, once home, I gathered up the  tea-tray  and

Tea Tray for Sophia

Tea Tray for Sophia

a  favourite shawl (Sophia likes shawls)  which, long, long ago, was loomed by the  loving  hands of gentle women in far Nepal,

Cloth of silken threads

Cloth of silky cotton threads

and spread a small picnic tea for the two of us,  in the late afternoon  shade of the sweet-scented, summer roses.

In the shade of the roses

In the shade of the roses

Isn’t it a lovely setting for a cup of tea?  Take a closer look  and enjoy talking to Sophia as much as I did. I hope you can see her, though 🙂

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If you think I am being a little too fanciful, (and I am, just a little), think deeply on  the serendipity of this. In the morning, before I met Sophia at the post shop, I read this, about beauty and dreams and cloths, in my book of daily poetry: our encounter was, I think,  meant to be……

He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven

Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

William Butler Yeats
Now, most everyone says that this is a love poem and most everyone
is, no doubt, right, but I am NOT everyone, and, for me, these words
speak of the gloriousness that is created, and the life that is lit,  loved
and well-lived, when we cherish and respect and take responsibility
for our   dreams: all dreams;
your dreams, my dreams, the dreams of city dweller, suburban home
maker and  the gentle weaver of Kathmandu……..
(Phew! All ‘that’ from a cup of tea and a magazine :D)
© silkannthreades
A loose thread