camellias bloom 55/72

(working as part of a ‘Japanese 72 season micro-climate’ artist collaborative initiative within Treesisters)

Japanese season called ‘Ritto’ / beginning of winter, 7th November – 21st November
Micro climate ‘camellias bloom’ 7th November – 11th November

Here the Japanese calendar and ours seem to really part company! Not expecting blooming camellias until next spring….

The writing course continues to occupy my creative mind….

on LOVE….


Felt most when it is missing.

I fell through a hole in the net of human love and landed in a bigger Love.

There is no escaping it, although it is easy not to see when not wrapped in the arms and legs and skin and eyes of another.

Sometimes I play a game with the songs on the radio.
So many about ‘Love’.
I join in, sing along and lend them new intention…
Re-address them to all around me, to the world, to the trees, to the ground I walk on, to the sky….the words seem always to fit…(with a few, important, pronoun tweaks)….even the sadder , angrier ones…..and I wonder if it could really be that easy?
Instead of singing to ourselves, talking among ourselves, we can just sing and converse to and with the whole.

Loving the whole. ourselves as part of the whole.

(Phonetically this points to something else!)

Yes, even loving the hole.
The hole I dug to plant something new?
That hole I fell through that brought me back to earth?
The terrifying holes at the edge of the universe pulling and pushing us, those tiny black holes in each cell in creation?
The hole in my heart that makes me feel something is missing?
Loving the gap? Loving the void?

Wherever a vacuum is felt, fill it with Love.

Love connects all.

Love is power.

Love is everywhere and glues it all together.

This sun loves it’s solar system. This Light is Love.
The earth loves the sun. The moon loves the earth. The oceans love the earth and the moon. The sky loves the earth as the earth loves it’s sky.

All the elements exist in a dance of Love.

All that enjoy life upon the earth’s surface love the earth…except, apparently, humans who continue to attempt to defy gravity….

Is Love gravity?

There is a kind of gravity to Love.

I feel it and it always shows me the holes, the gaps that I can fill with it. I, naturally, rush in wherever I see it missing.

For I am also Love.

Although, sometimes, it feels like I am not enough….

My love is never rejected, it cannot be, but it is often consumed….and only ever by humans.

By those who think it is smaller than it really is….those who believe they exist outside this love…who live by wrong definition….those that seek more selfish, physical, reward….who deny its power and its gravity….themselves becoming ‘black holes’…their need for Love both denied and undeniable….insatiable even.

I rest in the knowing that Love is ever present.

This big Love is the present.

The present I am ever enabled to give,

that presents in all I behold.

Be held…..


Kat Robertson 10th November  2019

And then today I shared this description of a powerful encounter I had in this season. I did not know when I began it, but it grew to fulfill the next 3 prompts…..Fear, Reverence, and Shame….still reeling from the way the the words flowed….


It stood.
Basking in the sunshine.
At the mouth of the town river.
A kind of illusion.
Standing on a rock in the water.
A single mute swan.

All else dropped away.

How was it that I had never really seen a swan before?
I had woven with Swan, danced with Swan, drawn Swan
Even called for Swan…

“Power to these wings so these words will fly, cutting like a white wing, through a humming sky….”

Standing on the riverbank I was awe struck.
Amazed that other dog walkers and passers-by did not also join me, to stop and gape at this creature, beyond our imagining, so complete, so perfect, so, unutterably, fine.

I moved closer. Gentle words passed over my lips. The frost crunched underfoot. I raised my camera, asking permission…the whole world around seemed to fade away.

Just me and Swan and Water and Sky and Light.
Such Light.
Each feather seemed to hold a spectrum of crystalline, blueish, beauty.
It moved with such precision and grace.
Sometimes its powerful, serpentine, neck would fold on itself and it would rest, nestled in its own perfection.
Thinking swan thoughts. Making no sound.

It saw me there.

I moved closer toward the bank, passed the undergrowth, and saw another path appear, right along the edge of the water…..
Then I felt it….Fear.
If I took that path I would become trapped.
The undergrowth above me, preventing escape.

The swan watched me intently.

Perhaps it also felt it….that wariness….what kind of human was I?
One that threw stones or bread?
Was it the swan’s fear I was feeling?
Or only my own?

It was a strong bird. A huge powerful bird. A muscular, mighty, feathered, wonder. A conqueror of kilometres.
A emperor among birds.

Dark tales of swan attacks crept into my psyche.
I whispered words of Peace and Love.
Viscerally awake now. Doubly alive.
So aware of its potential speed and power. The might of its huge wings. The sharpness of its vivid beak. I could almost hear a hiss….

I was alone here. Just me and the swan.

I was in no doubt that only my legs could save me, if it decided I had no place there…I would have to run….

The swan regarded me with its infinite, black, eyes, then turned away. Deciding I was no threat. Defending its chosen place in the sun.

I found myself wishing I had some bread, some crumbs, something, to give the swan.
But I had nothing, only these whispered words of Love and Awe.

I took a few more steps along the edge.

Some rubbish was caught in the grasses. I thought of picking it up. But did not. I had nowhere to put it.
This was a different angle….my camera focused on the swan.
But all was heightened now. My breath came faster.
“It is just a swan” I told myself….but somewhere deep inside I knew that this was so much more than ‘just a swan’.
This was inspiration.
This was the stuff of fairytales and myths.

Look at it. Really look at it.

The swan reared up and stretched its wings, arching its huge body in the light. It shook it head….I gasped in reverence.

“You are taller than me!” I whispered.

It posed for me, reflected in the water.

“Thank you swan” I said…..but for a second I saw a scorpion in its reflected image….sensed a double edged sword of light and truth….and felt the Fear again.

It curled up and stared at me through its feathers.

Then, with precise and graceful deliberation, it stepped off its rock and dipped into the water. Easy in this element.
So quick, the way it cut through the water. Perfectly designed.

It glided, soundlessly, toward me.

“I have no bread. I have nothing for you” I said, out loud this time…..I began to walk fast, determined not to run. I turned the camera off and put it in my pocket…pretended to turn my attention to other things around….”Its ok swan….I am leaving now”…..all the time aware of making distance between me and the swan behind me.

When I felt there was enough distance, I stopped and turned around.

The swan had returned to the rock.
Taking its place, once again, in the landscape.
Enjoying the sun, basking in its rays.
This human had not been worth it.

I felt ashamed.
Ashamed of my fear.
Ashamed of not having more than words to give.
Ashamed that I had not picked up the rubbish.
Ashamed that I felt I had never really seen Swan before….not quite like this….

But enriched by this encounter.

I had some great photos and something to write about, something real.
Something to do with Reverence, Fear and Shame.

A gift. A blessing. An eye-opener. A truth.
A brilliant reflection, in a, dirty, river of life.
An opportunity to glimpse the power that lies beneath….reflected in its surface.

How easily, how quickly, our arrogance and sense of security can be toppled by Nature.
How fast it can all change…

It probably meant me no harm.
Just as curious as I.
Although I doubt it felt the awe and reverence that rippled through my being, in our brief encounter.
I had felt, for a moment, the nightmares of the entire world at the very idea that one day, if so inclined, our earth could turn against us.

We would not stand a chance.

So I learned.

Always have something to give back.
Always pick up the rubbish where you see it lying.
Always have your eyes open to the sheer magnificence that is all around….

And always show reverence.

It will not save you, but it is deserved.

Kat Robertson 14th November 2019

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