Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Leisurely Day Bicycling

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The perfect day to bicycle around the island
Will take my sketching things in my tote bag and have a leisurely day.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Golden Flowers

Golden Flowers
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
Today the priestesses on our island
have been weaving sunlight and green
A quilt of gentle warmth in hope
that the Gypsy queen will come once more
dance with them her graceful saraband
and rest at midnight under the white moon

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Where to Plant a tree

I am wondering where I might go
to plant a tree
A tree to remember a little dog
Will I plant a tree to remember her on Owl Island?
Or will I choose to go to the Hermitage?
Or perhaps I will plant one in my garden!

Last night at midnight I drove my friend
Angela to a Vetinary Hospital in Werribee
A large outer suburb of Melbourne.
Some 30ks from where we live.

Desdemona was a 5yr old Dachshund
Short legs and a long fat belly
We called her Dessie for short
She was Jessie Dog's best friend
She thought Jessie was her Dog Mother
She nuzzled Jessies eyes,ears and nose
As well as at the other end too
She slept in our beds at all times in the night

She had a massive brain shut down and was paralised
Her eyes told us she was in pain
We wrapped her in her blanket,
And with Jessie dog on board
We crossed the Westgate Bridge
that joins the east with the west in Melbourne

20 minutes later we entered the training hospital
through the emergency entrance.
Three vets on duty and four vet nurses.
Angie laid Dessies limp body on the treatment table
A decision was not hard to make
No recovery was possible
So a small needle in her leg put her to sleep
In the arms of her loved owner

We came home dug a hole near the fish pond
Where she loved to watch the fish
Wrapped in her favourit blanket
we lowered her in very gently after lots of hugs and kisses
Her little plaque with her name on
and her few toys went in as well
Angie could make this decision
that was so hard knowing
In her 5 years of life she had
lived it to the fullest
Her fiesty loveable dog
was at peace.

We are now a threesome
having travlled,walked,loved and played
as a foursome for some 5 years
Our memories will become stronger
as time goes by
I know for now it is a time to grieve.
To shed many tears ,to wish she was still here
To try and keep busy
but still watch where we walk
in case we trip over Dessie Dog
who was always in the kitchen
looking for a morsel that might have dropped
on to the floor.
We will see her there we will see her here
She will be with us for a long time to come

Lois (Muse of the Sea) Monday 27th March 2006.

Gift of Solitude

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A 'view' of Owl Island
Actually taken near the Antarctic by unknown photographer

We all need time alone. Even those of us who are social butterflies need some time to ourselves. Solitude is necessary for meditation and quiet reflection. We also may choose to isolate ourselves when we are busy and need to meet a deadline. We may cherish time alone when we want to give ourselves over to art or music, lose ourselves in a good book, or delve into a personal project. Having time to ourselves allows us to focus completely on our yoga practice or get into the zone while running or strength training. Sometimes we need to be alone to simply do nothing but enjoy the sound of silence. Our alone time revitalizes and replenishes us, grounding us in our own company.

Yet, too much isolation, especially when our intention is to hide, withdraw, or not deal with the realities of our lives is not physically, mentally, or spiritually healthy. It is during moments like these when being in isolation takes us away from our lives, rather than enhancing it. If anything, too much isolation can create a buffer whereby we don't have to deal with our problems. Sometimes, pushing ourselves to deal with our issues and be in our lives, rather than isolate, is one of the best gifts we can give to ourselves.

Also, just as it is important for us to have our "alone" time, we need to remember that as human beings, we are by nature social creatures that thrive on human contact. Our lives cannot occur in a vacuum, and we cannot fully live in this world without interacting with others. Consider using isolation as time spent for rest, reinvigoration, and personal growth. Isolation can then not only empower you, but it can allow you to return to your work and your relationships restored and ready for life. from Daily OM

Two of my favourite books are Journal of a Solitude by May Sarton and Gift From the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindberg. I have been enjoying the 'solitude' of Owl Island where I have been sketching and spending quality solitary time.

This week consider escaping from the madness of society, take some 'alone time' and share your thoughts and feelings here, at Riversleigh, lwithin the sanctuary of the Lemurian Hermitage or in the Salon du Soul.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Out and About on Owl Island

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I have been out and about with my sketch book and visited the big bollards near the jetty and White Owl Farm. It was the most lovely day out. I had my bag, with some sandwiches and a drink tucked inside and slept to the sound of the ocean pounding near the bedroom window when I finally got back to my hideaway retreat.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

squirrels' evening

squirrels' evening
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
This is the photo of our ancestors that we keep in the storeroom. George and Tiny

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

George and Tiny

George and Tiny

There they are,
see their bushy tails, but wait,
where are they now?
They move so fast,
are there one moment
and gone the next—

oh, I see them, high up in that old oak,
on those highest branches,
see, they’re looking down on us
and chattering as if we’re to blame
for whatever it is that bothers them.
Cheeky little devils that they are—

I can’t help but admire their
carefree life, or is it as it seems?
They have their foes
just like we have enemies,
but they seem, somehow,
to manage better than we do—

despite our sophistication,
our weapons of mass destruction,
yes, we have them, too.
The squirrels though,
despite their size and their seemingly
carefree lives, know how to make the most—

of play … it’s all a game, you see,
the hunting and gathering of seeds and nuts,
though deadly serious, it is a game
to be played often and every day.
So, George and Tiny, thank you,
thank you for inviting me to share your tree,
and wonder if you don’t have it right
with your tiny brains and bushy tails—
yes, I think you have it right.

Vi Jones
©March 21, 2006

Monday, March 20, 2006

Vi's plumbago quilt

Vi's plumbago quilt
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
Vi's quilt for the hammock beneath the wide tree
where George and Tiny have promised to welcome her

Squirrel Antics

Lois, this one is for you….

Squirrel Antics

Oh, to be a squirrel—
to race up and down
and round about—
high up in the trees,
noisily acclaiming
your presence
from the branches—

then down again to gather
nuts and seeds for your stash,
and hiding them in haste
here and there and everywhere.
Chasing one another,
chittering and chattering,
flicking that gorgeous bushy tail—

to see the humans
ooh and aah,
and little children
delighting in your antics,
for though they chase you,
they can never catch you.
You have not a care, or so it seems—

though I know you have
unfriendly neighbors like
owls on silent wings, hawks, too,
and foxes, but you’re at home
in wilderness or park, and
I would give a sack of gold
to be a squirrel for a day.

Vi Jones
©March 20, 2006

Squirreling away

Squirreling away
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
Please don't let the owls know that we are hiding on their island. I hope one of the dear visitors will hang her hammock On our tree and keep our store room safe. We promise not to chew the ropes or drop from the branches onto your quilt. Tiny says you can have two of his best pecans for your desert. Signed Tiny and George, residents.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Tapping on my chamber door

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An owl came tap tapping at my chamber door

Friday, March 17, 2006

Owl Island Walking

To walk on Owl Island is
like a dream, things
are wild and untamed.
The seagrass whispers
secrets and rustles with
the water is salty
and invigorating,
colour of the sun,
following you up
the beach,
in friendly waves.
The wind is
like a fairweather
Muse, calling...

copyright Monika Roleff 2006.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

THE OWL AND THE MUSE (not stolen from The Owl and the Pussyca

The Owl and the Muse
Went to sea
In a beautiful tea tree boat
They sailed on calm waters,provisions aboard
with something to eat, and coffee to drink.
Large painters book, coloured pecils kept in a dry bag.
Eraser not needed,true artist she said

The landing was fine,white sand and palm trees
inviting the weary to sleep under them
A hammock of choice -large or small
made from the strongest of twine
collected from reeds and rushes that covered
this haven on earth.

A small note pined on a palm
read like this
"Sleep if you can
some say its too quiet
Give it chance
Just talk to the birds
Their eyes give you stories
to paint and to pose
They know that this island
Is here just for those
who have made it their quest
No hammock for those
who don't come for a rest"

Signed " Sec to the Owls"

Lois (Muse of the Sea) 17.3.06

Come to Illustrate Life on White Isle Island

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I have come to White Owl Island to retreat for a couple of weeks. White Owl Island is one of the islands on the Lemurian Archipelago, a short boat trip from Duwamish Bay and a popular destination for anyone needing time to recoup. Like Lindberg who wrote Gift From the Sea I have come to experience the solitude, to sketch and draw and to document some of the life on this island.

As I lay meditating upon the ocean outside my window White Owl herself appeared at my door. I could not resist her urgent tapping and let her in. She has offered to be my guide and rest with me awhile.

All I bought with me were some supplies so that I would not have to return to the mainland and my sketchbooks and journals. I am illustrating a journal. No words appear on my pages for it is the sketches which will tell the story of my days on this island.

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Wednesday, March 15, 2006

This is what I saw as darkness fell on White Owl Island.

Morning Hibiscus

Morning Hibiscus
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
Not to be outdone
our youngest priestess with the help
of twenty tiny owlets
gathered hibiscus blossoms and made
this thick comforter for our latest visitor
the Secretary and the Great White Owl

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Among the white owls...

After a frenetic week, it is wonderful to lie back in my hammock and inhale the peace of White Owl Island.

Even when you know it is going to happen, moving house is a chaotic business, but it is worth it - our new home is on a hill overlooking the river and the countryside around our village. We are in the `French quarter' where all the streets have French names, and it is incredibly peaceful and pretty, the air is so clear you can taste it like fresh spring water and on most days, no matter how hot, we get a breeze.

I have started work on the garden - it has been somewhat neglected but the `bones' are good. But the business of packing and unpacking and running back and forth between the old residence and the new has been exhausting, and every time I get home the piles of unpacked possessions reproach me.

So I have slipped away to the peace of White Owl Island, with a long cool drink and my hammock overlooking the bay where seals play. I have a small feathery white companion - a beautiful white owl called Yenna, who has befriended me and has been telling me stories of the silkies - she assures me that these are no ordinary seals, but the silkies that leave their skins behind on moonlit nights and dance on the sands.

I grew up with these legends in Ireland, but never was fortunate enough to see the silkies out of their seal skins. Yenna tells me that if I stay here tonight, I will see them, because there is a full moon in Pisces.

``That's a celebration time for them," Yenna hoots softly. ``Pisces is the sign of the sea, ruled by Neptune, and tonight there will be music and wild dancing on the sands."

I roll over in my hammock, and sip my cold drink. I know I have so much to do at home - but Yenna's invitation to stay and watch the silkies with her is irresistable.

Will I really see them at last, those mysterious creatures that filled my childhood dreams? As if in answer to my question, there comes a strange music born on the breeze, a sweet but melancholy piping...

``The piper comes already," Yenna whispered. ``He is calling all the silkies to dance on the shore."

My mind made up, I lie back in my hammock and breathe a contented sigh.

On White Owl Island

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Monday, March 13, 2006

Priestesses quilt

Priestesses quilt
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
In the quiet afternoons
the priestess gathering
makes quilts. This is the pattern
they call bouganvillaea for it is made
from blossoms gathered at dawn
and sewn with delicate precision
into gossamer
to cover you as you sleep.


I hear her call and am drawn further along the path
I pick my way towards the sound of her wise voice

"Hoot", she said.

I just needed to see her
Soft feathers against the dark, black night sky

I just needed to be in her presence
And soak up the waves of wisdom radiating off her

I draw close and I can see her now
She turns her head and looks down at me with her big, clear eyes

I blink and see her intelligence reflected there in those eyes
I yearn for her to speak to me

"Hoot", she says.

All of my questions become still in my mind
As I gaze up at her loveliness

We look at each other and suddenly I know
I don't need her to tell me what to do

I have a wisdom all of my own

I grew stronger on my journey here
I learnt things I would never have known if I'd remained at home

I continued to stare into her clear eyes
As she continued to stare into mine

"Hoot", she said.

The Egg

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le Enchanteur and Raven have been left tending 'The Egg'. Should give me a rest for awhile. Perhaps I will string up a hammock on another part of the island.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

She Oak Hammock

I love this nest, and it
reminds me of a hammock, so
I will rest in it on Owl

copyright Monika Roleff 2006.

A Welcome Hammock

I will travel by Raven
To a land on the move
An island of Owls
Caring,kind and watchful
A hammock for sleep
Feathers for warmth
I have slept here before
in another year at another time

Feeling revived the mood lasted on
Till sleep came without pill or potion
I want those feeling once again
As life runs ragged as is the norm
Sometimes too quickly
trying to fit all of those wasted years
into the shortest of time left
That road I have travelled gets further away
I often regret I have left it too long

Hop on a plane ,a boat, and take the risk
What holds me back?
I know it too well!
It's safety of knowing that home holds the key
to all that I need ,want and desire

Instead I will travel to that Island
you covert
I'll stay with you Fran
on that home of the Owls
a more peaceful journey
or safe haven to find
Hold me a hammock
I'll call into see,
She who is friend to not only to
you and to me
A rest for we three
sounds more like a "Chat Fest"
No rest to be had
Perhaps split us up
to the North or the South
to rest in that hammock
an revive and revive...

Love Lois (Muse of the Sea) 13.3.06.

Welcome back to the Island

Owl island again jpg
Originally uploaded by FranSb.
A hammock has been set up
for each of you
who come to visit
The priestesses wait
to whisper wisdom
and the Great White Owl
will watch over you
while you find gentle sleep