Includes book reviews and bits from writer's journal. For the professional stuff, see website link below left.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fun for Poets!

The absolutely lovely John Hewitt over at PoeWar (Writer's Resource Centre) is all set to repeat his successful game from last year: 30 poems in 30 days as soon as we hit September. It was such lovely fun last time! He is very good at thinking up interesting and innovative prompts; no-one better.

Last September I found myself writing on topics and in styles that I hadn't expected, but which tapped into deep stuff I needed to say. And I made some great new friends! Also it was a lovely way to connect with certain old friends.

I do hope some of you will sign up this year. Please pass the word along!

P.S. I've just noticed that this year you need to go to "Write Poems with Me" (the second paragraph in the left-hand column of his home page, at present) and actually send your contact details to sign up – unlike last year when we all just lobbed in. Some people, it seems, wanted more privacy. I think that takes some of the fun out of it, but I'm willing to play along and see how it goes.

This is from an email just received from John:

"I'll be posting the assignments to the blog in the same way I did last year, but I am also hosting a private forum where people can post and discuss their poems in a more workshop format."

Friday, August 22, 2008

Stupid White Man

Can't say I appreciated a remark from Grahame Morris (former Prime Minister's former Chief of Staff) on Q&A last night. How would carbon trading damage Aussie workers, he was asked. His answers did make some sense in terms of economics. The bit I objected to was when he gazed through the camera at the home audience and referred to all of us watching on our "big plasma screens" which Government policy might render us unable to afford.

Speak for yourself, Mr Morris! Not all of us can afford big plasma screens even now.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Getting Older - The Gift

You may have seen this before. A friend just forwarded it by email, which probably means it's been going the rounds a while. But I hadn't seen it before, and in many respects it speaks for me.

I hate those so-called jokes people send about getting decrepit, gross and stupid with age. They seem so negative and fearful. I could never explain why I didn't find them funny. Now I know – it was because I simply couldn't relate.


THIS is what MY experience of ageing has been like (and never mind about the hair – it was grey for ages before it went purple!):


Old Age, I decided, is a gift

I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometimes despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror (who looks like my mother/father!), but I don't agonize over those things for long.

I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself, and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend.

I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.

I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until
noon?

I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60&70's, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love .. I will.

I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set .

They, too, will get old.

I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.

Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong.

So, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it.)

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Thinkin' Trim Taut Terrific

I'm in a movie! We began filming yesterday. In the process, over the next 12 months I'm going to become slim, fit and gorgeous!

Thinkin' Trim Taut Terrific is the business name and website of my dear friend Letitia Lee, who is making this film with the encouragement of the film production company Screenworks. She is in their mentoring program.

Letitia describes her film not as a documentary but "a reality film from the heart".
She herself is the star. She has employed her own methods so successfully in the past that she wanted to share them with the world, and regained weight on purpose so as to be able to demonstrate how to lose it. I've known her long enough to have seen her both ways.

A small, select group of us are the supporting cast. When I heard she was making this film and advertising for cast members, I begged to be in it because I know this girl can get things done. Heck, she was one of the prime movers in the fund-raising drive that got me to Texas in 2006 to feature in poetry festivals there. In the last couple of years I have put on – well, let's just say more weight than I'm happy with. I'd like to avoid diseases associated with obesity, recover the energy I have had in the past, and yes, look good too.

This is one of my baby photos and some of me as a youngster. You can see that slenderness was always going to be something of a challenge. It doesn't appear to have been part of the design!


There have been times in my life that I was slim – sometimes bordering on anorexic, I realise with hindsight (a condition that hadn't been identified back then). They've always been interspersed with periods of overweight. And yes, I know all the ways to lose weight, and am a (temporarily) successful graduate of both Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig.

What makes me think Letitia's program will be any different? It's holistic – and I'm not allowed to say much more about that. We all signed a contract yesterday not to divulge the details of the program; though you can find out some things from the website. One of the most appealing things about it, which I can tell you, is that we aren't going to be existing on lettuce leaves. On the contrary. We're all overweight because we love food, and we're told that on this program we'll be eating well. In fact Letitia promised us, "This film will be food porn!"

Yesterday we filmed the opening sequences, where each of us appears in our natural habitat so to speak. I was shown on stage as a performance poet, wearing my purple Goddess gown which has been the costume for many performances. (I do have other clothes, but it always goes down so well.)


The cameraman wasn't prepared for the oomph I put into my performances. When I burst on stage and launched into my opening line, he said, "Hang on, I wasn't prepared for that!" and made some quick adjustments to his equipment. (I don't know ... sound? focus? I didn't ask. I was too busy feeling gleeful at having surprised him. Somehow, without meaning to, I always manage to project "ladylike"; people get a shock to discover my true outrageousness, and I love it when they do.)

The cast and crew are a great bunch of people; we all bonded quickly. I suspect some of that was due to Letitia's experience as a facilitator and team builder. She's very good at putting everyone at ease, at the same time as keeping them on track. It looks like being an interesting twelve months!

Friday, August 08, 2008

8:8:8 The Windows of Abundance - FREE Transcript

Received by email today; worth sharing for those who would like to take advantage of the opportunity:

Please note that this particular (half) transcript may be shared with anyone in its current form. Please do not alter, add to or delete it in any way, or change any links. This file may be published on your website in this form. Those who would like to access the complete transcript can do so for free, by following the directions at the end of this document. Please note that we are also making the audio file available at a much reduced rate too (see below). Nobody has permission to publish the complete transcript anywhere.
Lord Kuthumi

8:8:8 – Windows of Abundance Celebration
Channelled through Michelle Eloff©
Johannesburg, 08 July 2008

To find out more about Michelle Eloff & The Lightweaver, please click here.

Please note that reading this information will have an effect on you. You will energetically be linked with the Channelling being and a similar process facilitated with you. It is not exactly the same as being in the presence of the channelling Master; however the effects are just as powerful.

Do not concern yourself too much regarding time lines given to the participants in the channelling. You will be taken through a similar one in accordance with your Divine Plan, Timing & Purpose.


************

I am Kuthumi and I come forward upon the rays of Love and Wisdom to greet each of you at this time and to bring unto you the blessings of new awakening, new levels of energy, illumination and deep insight. Greetings beloved ones.

And it is with great joy and pleasure in our hearts that we may gather with each of you upon this day as we hold you firmly within the heart of Christ and securely upon the hands of God.

Precious ones this 8:8:8 celebration is one that will turn the world inside out and upside down, in a manner of speaking that is. This celebration is one that brings forth a level of new energy unlike anything humanity has experienced before. It is at this time that I, Kuthumi, am accompanied by the Lord Ra, Horus, Lord Soltec, Akhenaton and the Sun Goddesses of the Worlds of Light. As we gather together with each of you upon this celebration day we are ensuring that all the windows of abundance are wide open for every human being to fully embrace this powerful surge of new abundance consciousness. This is the time where we begin the powerful activations of the Sun Chakra and the new chakras that will be birthed through this, which Akhenaton and the Sun Goddesses are responsible for anchoring on Earth with those willing Lightworkers.

Your energy field is being prepared to receive additional dimensions of consciousness, which are programmed into the Sun Chakra, which will fully weave itself into the sacred grid of your unique divine plan upon the day of the 21st of December 2008. At that time those of you who are willing to receive your new chakras through the Sun Portal of Akhenaton will be activated on many levels so that the calling to receive this particular initiation will be heard loud and clear, and felt deeply within your heart, your body, your mind and your spirit.

This celebration of abundance is presenting humanity with an opportunity to completely turn away from poverty consciousness. From this time of the 8:8:8 celebration up until the 21st of December 2008 those who have chosen to allow poverty consciousness to still influence thoughts, decisions and choices will be challenged to the very ends of their willpower. This my beloved ones is by no means something that is meant in a threatening fashion all it is, is information preparing you for what is, and the opportunity that you and the collective consciousness of humanity now are able to tap into. These particular abundance grids are very powerful. They are unprecedented. This means it is in your best interest and that of humanity for you to open your heart now and to seriously take action in the direction that will secure your future within the fluid grids of this very powerful abundance consciousness.

When the Sun Chakra was first anchored in its full power in the year 2003, humanity began to feel the birthing of the Golden Age, the sun being the golden energy. Every year at the 8:8 celebration another level or another dimension of this very powerful energy has been presented to humanity. The golden lions and the white lions have been guarding that energy for all of this time and now they are ready to release that full responsibility to the humans who are willing and ready, and of course prepared to use this energy to it’s full extent. We are preparing many, many levels of energy for the Lightworkers who are willing to embark upon this journey, which will then result in the birthing of the alchemists of the new earth, which is specifically the focus of the sacred journey that this channel will be leading in Egypt in the month of February 2009. That particular journey is one of immense intensity and where we will fully anchor the Feminine White Fire Element. There are specific processes that we will take you through, the reclaiming of certain energies and sacred grids that Akhenaton and the Sun Goddesses will be responsible for doing, and now they are laying the grids for this.

For many, many years, many centuries in fact, humanity has been bombarded with poverty consciousness. The primary experience for souls has been poverty, abuse, deprivation and desperation. Today that signature changes, and it is upon this day that the creatures you know as Alpacas will flood the earth with this sacred vibration by acting as the receptive physical energies, and channelling it out to the human beings. The Alpacas hold the energy of the Sixth Dimensional fluid love within their genetic structure. It is through their fleece that one can access these very pure energies. These creatures hold a very high vibration. We will attune your energies to the sacred vibration of the Alpacas. This links you to all the sacred vortices around the planet that access the Sixth Universe. It is only through the fluid consciousness of fluid love that one can penetrate the realms of the abundance we speak of, this means that each and every one of you who are ready for this now step into a new level of your own power - another dimension of discovering the alchemist within.

The sacred White Fire Element has already taken you through some intensive initiations, and what you have gotten in touch with has revealed to you many aspects of yourself that you could not have imagined were possible, or a part of you a few months ago. Now the world, and by this we mean Gaia, is open, wide open and fully receptive to receive this influx of new Sun Chakra energy. She is soaking up the rays of this powerful light so that the sacred discs can be activated in her body. These particular discs hold frequencies that we will encode you with at the right time. This information has been held sacred within specific areas - sacred sites, that many people do not even know exist.

In the very near future we will be asking this vessel; our channel, to travel to these places and all of those of you who are willing to participate we urge you to travel, to join in and to absorb these energies because now the signatures of all the sacred sites around your planet, the old ones and the new ones that we will lead you to will change completely, the blueprint will change. Some sacred sites have shut down their energy. People have travelled to them and have felt that there is a deadness; a numbness at these sites. That has happened for a specific reason because many of those sites have become dormant because they are in preparation for these activations that I, Kuthumi, am responsible for bringing to your planet during the year of 2009.

The Unity Goddesses who hold the Priestess Consciousness, shall be delivering this to humanity as well are preparing each of you through the sacred ceremonies of the Alchemy of Quantum Tantra. And I assure you your life will never be the same again. This is now the time to exercise your spiritual muscles, to exercise your will, your desire to live the best life ever and most important, this is the time for you to drop all poverty consciousness and to focus your concentration on reclaiming your divine right of abundance in all it’s forms of light. I have said before you can have an abundance of negativity and poverty if you like, you can also have an abundance of positivity and prosperity if you like. No longer can you use the excuse that your programming and your genes are what keep you trapped in poverty. You are your own individual sacred being. You have a willpower that is unique unto you, a divine grid that is yours alone. Your lineage does not have the power over you that it did in the old paradigm, you are the alchemists of the new earth this means using your magic, using the power of love, which is the magic I refer to and that power of love is the light of Tantra, the sacred weave of love to bring the magic and miracles that you seek into manifestation.
So this celebration beloved ones is you embarking upon the most important journey of your lifetime where I, Kuthumi, with the Unity Goddesses and the Sun Beings of Light take you through one of your most intensive series of initiations into poverty consciousness. This means you will be challenged to drop your poverty consciousness at an accelerated rate, therefore I ask you do you have what it takes to do this? Do you want it badly enough? Nothing can compare to where you are going to.

So beloved ones if you are willing to embark upon this journey, this wild ride where you will befriend and merge with your authentic self in a way like never before, you will see that your fears were simply little irritations trying to distract you. And I make a promise to you today that you will rejoice from the very core of your heart that you had the will, the strength and the desire to move beyond poverty and step into what you will experience. Yes there will challenges, I will not fool you however those challenges are stripping you of the illusions that have been created by your poverty consciousness, therefore everything that holds you, traps you in any state of poverty will be removed be it a thought, an attitude, a person, a habit or an addiction. Again I ask you - are you ready to let go and to trust like never before and I emphasise that – like never before? I assure you the rewards will be vast. You precious ones are laying the grids for the new earth post 2012. You have the most incredible opportunity at your disposal now because history past or post 2012 has not been written as such. Where the Mayan Calendar ends is where the predictions end, it is where the history of the future ends, therefore you are in a position to create the new world and to make it that which your deepest heart desires most, and the desire that comes from the fluidity of the sacred universes of pure divine cosmic and solar love. You cannot even begin to fathom what that is and I will not even ask you to try and imagine it because right now it is impossible. All you need to do now is feel the power that is filtering into your body through this 8:8:8 vibration and consciously choose to open yourselves and let it receive.

Now I ask you to welcome into your space a mighty lion called Thor. He is a white lion, and he is accompanied by his brother who is known in his earth body as Greg. He too is a lion. These two energies symbolise the active fire of the golden Kundalini. I want you now to imagine an exquisite golden lioness her name is Damara, accompanied by her sister Maya, also a golden lioness. Their energies symbolise the two fire frequencies of the Feminine White Flame and the light of the Sun Goddesses. Lions symbolise truth and authenticity, their voice is the roar of truth.

Imagine Goddess Sekhmet now entering your sacred space. I want you to imagine the lions expressing a deep roar as they welcome her into the space. She is one of the Goddesses of War and Destruction, however her solar power is very strong and it is this power that you will utilise to destroy the old paradigms of poverty consciousness that lurk within the corners of your shadow self, and that lurk within the dimensions of the subconscious, which are fuelled by the unconscious, which will soon become conscious to you. Goddess Sekhmet extends her hands to you, as you hold her hands imagine a powerful surge of fire energy pulsating through your body up your arms, into your shoulders and down your spine to an area between your base chakra and your sacral chakra, which is the location of your Sun Chakra.

Use your imagination to see this golden energy, this bright liquid fire-light inside the gold swimming around inside your Sun Chakra. The heat of this energy extends into your astral body and that flows like liquid lava into the tapestry of your wounded self. This liquid lava flows into your emotional body, your mental body and your spiritual body and seeks out every wounded part of you, especially the wounds that have resulted in poverty consciousness. The intense heat of the gold and fire energies melt those wounds, all the frozen concepts that you took on that influence you unconsciously and subconsciously resulting in you behaving fearfully, still believing in poverty and deprivation and I ask you now to simply surrender, to turn your head to the heavens, to extend your arms out, to open your heart chakra and to just let it happen. With your arms extended I want you to turn the palms of your hands over, you will lay one hand upon the crown chakra of the lion Thor and the other upon the crown chakra of the lioness Damara and feel the powerful pulsations of truth and love being extended into your body through your palm chakras as their purr borders on a gentle roar. Surrender and receive.

Download whole transcript from here.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Alexander Solzhenitsyn leaves us

Sometimes I feel old....

Isn't it the end of an era when such an important writer dies? As many commentators are saying, he was instrumental in bringing about the end of Stalinism with his brave writing and the risks he took to get it published. He opened the eyes of the world.

In repressive regimes, writers may also be heroes. Solzhenitsyn had already spent years in the labour camps for an anti-Stalinist comment, so he knew very well what he risked.

I have teenage goddaughters and grandson who weren't born when these things happened. To them it's past history. Perhaps they don't even know who he was or what he did. But I think the world gained from his presence in it.