Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Dali Lama

My last day in Wellington this time around was also the day the Dali Lama came to town. I asked the universe to let me see him since I did not have a ticket, the 8,000 seat Arena had sold out. Walking to my yoga class I cut through the James Cook Hotel and felt his presence. I sat down. A car pulled up, I looked behind me, he was in a black car, sitting in the passenger side, front seat. He got out, came into the lobby followed by security. I stood up, bowed, took his picture, and bowed again.

Next time I'll ask the universe to see AND hear him. I missed his message but Rose said later over tea and cake that he talked about family, mothers in particular. On TV the night before a reporter asked him if he can remember his past lives and the Dali Lama said no sometimes I can't remember what I did yesterday. His message: develop a smart mind but also develop a compassionate heart. He said he may be the last Dali Lama.

It was sad that the Chinese Government pressured Helen Clark the Prime Minister of New Zealand to not meet with the Dali Lama and so there was no formal event with NZ's PM. This saddens me. The Chinese Government also pressured PM Howard of Australia to not meet with the Dali Lama and he told them to stuff it. One news report quoted Howard as saying: 'we will not put trade before human rights.' Ah, election years are so full of hope.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Bundles of Grief: Dead Son

"Dead Son" String, found stone, Pukerua Bay: From "Bundles of Grief" small sculptures. Pataka Museum, Exhibition, Porirua, NZ Nov 2005

Saturday, June 16, 2007

What I do what I don't do

What I do what I don’t do I have noticed revolves around results, I will do this and get that, if I don’t do this I won’t get that, if I do that then maybe this will come and the maybe is the thing that makes me feel powerless, it’s a game although I don’t really think game fits what I am feeling I don’t feel like a game but I do feel someone has created the board I play on and I do feel that a roll of the dice is acceptable and there are rules, yes rules, if I could find out what the rules are, if the rules did not change so much I could learn and play real hard and win as if I don’t have a thing to say about it at all but I know I do or rather I do have a choice on how I react to all that goes on around me because I have faith, in certain faiths one believes my way or god’s way and then god helps those who help themselves and let it go and let it be and then some rocker said let it bleed and I guess that is more how I feel, let it be and bleed and just be because its always been this way or as some say sometimes it bees that way.

Monday, June 11, 2007

An American: Powerful Muscles

Powerful Muscles afraid to relax
they have now become men
power against her the state
it’s no longer a healthy restraint

so we choose cowardice
through what? violence
she’ll turn the other check
so we choose reality
through what?brutality
and regain your manhood for her her her her her her
the state

What have you said if your dead
if it’s in your head what have you said
you can’t revive what’s alive
and if it’s dead what have you said

so choose cowardice
through what? violence
she’ll turn the other check
so we choose reality
through what?brutality
and regain your manhood for her her her her her her
she's the state the state the state

Helen Thomas

Something happens when we are in a foreign country and hear news about our own country or someone from there, from where we used to be.

Helen Thomas, journalist for Hearst Publications was interviewed, on the phone, by Radio New Zealand, May, 2007. Here are some things I heard that I found inspiring about a true American!

Helen Thompson has been covering the news under 9 presidents in the USA beginning with John F Kennedy. She is a self-declared liberal.

She said getting her start as a woman journalist was easy because at the start of WWII all the men were drafted. She said she will never retire. “Why would I retire? I love my work.” She’s in her 80’s.

Thomas said all administrations are somewhat secretive but (the present) George Bush is more so. As a member of the White House Press Corp her job is to ask the questions. It’s been a year since she asked President Bush a question; her last question was, “Why did you go to war?” Since Bush has not asked her to ask him a question since, (this is how it works) she says she must rely on the other journalists to ask the questions.

Thompson says that she writes a public opinion column, in which she has opinions but is not biased. She’s not an objective reporter, she writes in hopes of influencing people because she is not running for any thing. For example, she writes about why it is wrong to torture. She hopes she can persuade people to also believe it is wrong.

She said George Bush Senior understood foreign policy but was not great domestically. In the first Gulf War Bush knew not to go to Baghdad because there would be a civil war.

Check out her column: helent@hearstdc.com

Twilight in Pukerua Bay

view of Kapiti Island
Pukerua Bay


From here
You are brown and green
Cold blue and
Breaking waves the color of caramel
Rocks that were brown in
Setting sun are now
Black in twilight
And the flax rattles
Like a dog panting
After a run

Saturday, June 09, 2007

New Song "You Take Yourself With You"

Photo: Tree Root: Waihonga Centre, Otaki River, NZ

Take Yourself With You
in Am (of course)

A 4 chord song to be posted on website soon

Didn’t think I would make it
didn’t think I’d get home in time
in time to tell you
I don’t know
why I left

can’t say I missed you
so busy being alone
had to get right back to where I started
to remember what went wrong

they say you take yourself with you
no matter where you roam
everywhere you go there you are
never far from home

I could get back on a plane
after I pick up my bag
had to go half way around the world
to realize I was already okay

they say you take yourself with you
no matter where you roam
everywhere you go there you are
and you thought you were alone

Monday, June 04, 2007

Boulcott & Willis Sts., Wellington

Studio 54 and Cocaine

Studio 54 and Cocaine: Alcohol industry pushes cocaine.

It is the tobacco and alcohol industry that has the most to gain from cocaine addiction.

Quite sweeping, but here is the evidence.

Watching a documentary on studio 54 last night, in its heyday, the 70’s, (disco!) one comment struck me: a man said, everyone was doing it, the papers said it was not addicting, it made you feel intelligent and that you could do anything. And, you could drink all night long.

Well, not everyone was doing it, but at Studio 54 all the "beautiful" people were at Studio 54 and most were probably doing it and they all believed it was non-addicting. (By the way, anyone else remember that disco was NEVER cool?) Even if you felt hooked, which certainly many must have, everyone was having a good time. I remember parties in New York in the early 80’s where complete strangers would offer cocaine to anyone near by. It was easy to buy. The senior secretary at the law firm I worked was the buyer there. It was not a social stigma. It took a while for people to see the negative effects.

HOWEVER, and herein lies the social contradiction. In 1973 the Rockefeller Drug Laws were created making it a Class A Felony to possess 4 ounces or sell 2 ounces of cocaine with a sentence of 15 years to life MINIMUM sentence; and sale of one-half ounce or possession of two ounces was a mandatory 3 years to life.

I remember the first person who offered me cocaine in the late 70’s: P in Detroit but I said no, I had a young child. (I love my old self). He assured me it just makes you happy. He was right, I took what I believed was a harmless substance and gleefully cleaned the house (mother’s little helper.) And I didn’t crave it again. I kept a little in the cupboard along with a bottle of scotch for company. If someone came by I would offer them coffee, scotch or a line. They were out of luck though if they were looking for grass, I did not like marihuana at all. It gave me the munchies and made me feel I had no control. (Like the man said, cocaine gave you the illusion you could do anything.)

So, who benefits from telling the public cocaine is safe? There must have been studies to the contrary. Why would the public be lied to in the mainstream press?
Who profits? Who gains? Since it is an illegal narcotic, it cannot exist without some form of police/government cooperation. And the spill off is the alcohol and tobacco industry, because as any addict knows, when you do cocaine you can also drink more. Drink more and more, puffing on your ciggie butts (as we called them when we were kids) without passing out. Party on!

It’s not hindsight that makes it acceptable that someone made a mistake designating cocaine safe. It was a known addicting narcotic. It’s always been known that people, in particular workers in South America are allowed the ‘habit’ of chewing on the leaves while they work. There is plenty of data on this in Peru and Bolivia. There is evidence from the 11th century that coca leaves were sacred and used in religious ceremonies. Like tobacco was used by the native American Indian until they were introduced to alcohol and guns and then their land was stolen and they were allowed to return to it in the form of a reservation. And now they sell cartons of cigarettes at a discount.

June 4, 2007

Saturday, June 02, 2007

First Tamarillo

Delicious tarty New Zealand fruit

Burger King Ad Update

There have been interesting comments by people in the media laughing at the removal of the Bikini-clad Burger King Girls' advertisement, as if bikini-clad women were a threat, abusing women again through their laughter as if we don't get it, suggesting we should all lighten up a bit. It's not the women in the ad and it's not the bikinis. It's simple: the objectification of women and their body parts is degrading, and when the intention is degradation for profit, it's a cultural and social problem. Take this simple test: Would you brag to your mates that it is your mother or your daughter making references to blow jobs, same-sex group sex, and golden showers to sell a hamburger?

It would be interesting to see who the creative team was behind this ad.


June 2007, once again I am counting down to the day I leave here again, this time for a different reason than exactly a year ago. Here are two recent photos taken at the Waihonga Retreat in Otaki where Patience is buried.

Crying Tree

My cabin: Silence near a stream