Wednesday, April 20, 2005

The Faces of the Goddess in my Life

Perhaps I never looked closely enough. Perhaps I was too blinded by my own neediness to see. But then, I am certainly feeling very needy now. I imagine I simply needed to reach a certain stage in life, a certain level of maturity, a certain awareness of the world and of people, to be able to see it. I doubt I would have understood so clearly last year, the revelations of who we are. That is, who we are today. Who knows what we may be next year.

Lisa, my Rock. Kristin and I like to say she never changes, but she does. She grows. She's soft and sexy and frighteningly intelligent. Artist, scientist, bookworm, Broadway lover. Townhouse, Honda, cats. Her husband is the stuff of romantic poetry: physically beautiful, artistic, sensitive, and utterly devoted to her. But one cannot describe Lisa through her home, her loved ones, or her job. These are external things. The essence of Lisa is hard to describe.

She is a classic Pisces. She reveals parts of herself according to the circumstance of conversation, and who she knows is listening. She does not actively hide herself, but she doesn't display either. She moves directly through her life, pragmatically, and fear does not motivate her. She is a vast, deep ocean of which I have never glimpsed the bottom, and my fascination grows each time I swim in her fresh, clear personality.

Lisa does not wish to think of life in the grand ways that I do, always searching for deeper meanings in things. She looks for tools she can use to build the life she feels is best for her, and her dreams are private. There are windows which she does not look out of... which I cannot resist gazing through for hours.

Lisa is the flip side of myself.

I am a mountain, straining toward something I cannot quite reach, trying to be content resting, letting others climb me and conquer me and leave their footprints in my outer layers, hopefully learning something or finding something valuable by reaching my summit, then feeling stronger and better equipped to move on, forgetting me in the face of new challenges. A lot of people have climbed Mount Ouiser. Plenty others couldn't reach my peak, plummeting painfully after only making it halfway, storming off, licking wounds and telling others that I'm too dangerous or not worth the effort. Yet others were content to camp out in my foothills awhile, returning from time to time for a pleasant rest from life. My icy peak isn't everyone's idea of a good time. it's awfully high up, and awfully cold up there. Get me at the wrong time of year, and you'll wonder why you bothered. But get me in the summer, when my trees are leafy and my flowers are blooming, and I'm in my glory. The sun melts my icecap, and I and all who visit me are quenched with fresh cool rivulets of belief in the future. My warm inner core heats up, I stretch myself to the sky, and I stand proud against the horizon, daring anyone to try and tame me, inviting and forboding at the same time. My ground is fertile, my foundation is solid, and I have braved the elements for more years than mankind has existed, yet I know that in this form I am ephemeral, and will eventually be reshaped like the rest of the earth.

Lisa is the ocean, teeming with life and feared by people who prefer to believe they are masters of her. She has no need for excessive adornment, because the essence of who she is ripples and sparkles in the sun, and compels with gentle undulations in the moonlight. She touches the oldest, most essential layers of the earth, and on the surface appears unaware of this. Depending on where you touch her, she is warm and inviting as bath water, or frigid and lethal, hiding herself in dense fog, protecting herself with icebergs that deflate arrogance and sink the folly of pretense. She is benevolent, but powerful. Most who float across her never even try to see her depths, and some regard her as nothing more than a resource to be exploited, but she ignores them, knowing she cannot be depleted, that her surface scars are merely that. A few who might begin to understand her vastness will back off quick, afraid of drowning. Some thought they could handle it, and dove in, only to paddle frantically for the shore, exhausted and spitting. But those of us who know her, who can relax and allow ourselves to float gently down to her deeper blues... we know we are special. We also know that even we may never experience her deepest layers. She reaches farther and farther into the world year after year, at her own relaxed pace, impossible to hold back, as the world evolves and inspires her to create more and more beautiful things.

I like to believe that, aside from Lisa's husband, who has known her only half as long as Kristin and I have, Kristin and I know Lisa better than anyone in the world. And yet, how much do even we know of her?

Kristin, The Scorpio, who I have often nicknamed Perfect Kristin, who reveals in the subtlest of ways that she is as human as the rest of us, with as many human needs. Her outer layers reveal the gifts from her ancestors: petite, blonde, blue-eyed, pale skin, elegant long fingers, adorable tiny feet, impeccable fashion sense. Over this, she cloaks herself in the American Dream, and wears it like a crown: Private college education, big house in a lovely chicago suburb, supportive husband who is a great daddy to two perfect kids (boy and girl), pre-owned Mercedes which she calls "my fun car," solid career in the corporate world, unflappable extrovert, limitless energy, gaggles of friends and a fearless view of the future.

Inside these trappings, Kristin is flame. Brilliant and beautiful, violent and necessary. Those who play with her get burnt, and healing can take a long time. Her destructive powers inspire respect in some and fear in others, and many will dismiss her as too dangerous to have around. She can be dangerous... yet in the right environment, she glows warmly, and makes a house a home.

Kristin's exact nature is a mystery. What is she, after all? Fire is unique. She is the newest and most volatile of elements, her energy bursting forth like the future from the mundane, the manifestation of the primordial spark of life, asserting itself with explosive greeting, determined to break free, demanding to be acknowledged. We only see what she chooses to show, and her twisting, turning flames are so intricate that we dare not ask what lies beneath. I know her, yet do not know her. I trust her, yet she is a very young soul, so I still get singed from time to time. All that heat attracts beings of every shape and size, and in her illumination we all feel exposed. Some can handle it, some can't. Some learn more about themselves, but many don't bother to look. Some simply get lost in the crowd. She's too blinding to look into for long, and if you get too close, she may lash out. Her energy is addictive, and we follow her everywhere she goes, knowing how cold and grey the world is when she is gone.

In every candle I light, I hear Kristin's laugh. Silly Didi.

I, the Virgo, feel the nourishment from Lisa's waters, the arms of the Mother holding me in Her Restful assurance that we will all be ok. I feel the warmth and vitality from Kristin's elemental fire, the Great Spirit of the Amazon, the fourth and newest face of the Goddess, challenging me, encouraging me, flying me over my own mountaintops, never letting me forget the power within me. Lisa slowly erodes away my surface, and I feel the life stirring within me, as she inspires me to create. Kristin's cataclysmic force inspires abrupt change in me - I make resolutions that starting here, now, today, I will do things differently, feel things more, look in new directions. I am a healthier, happier person in their presence. We all work together to make our world what it is.

I am the Maiden, still learning, still searching, still unknown. I have such wonderful teachers.

Blessings to you, my sisters.


Jess said...

Wow. That was, um... wow.

I feel like I was reading goddess poetry of some kind.

Not to ignore the profound things you wrote about your dear friends, but Lisa's "physically beautiful" husband... would you have any pictures you could share? :)

Brian said...

What a lovely tribute!

Pua; Bakin' and Tendin' Bar said...

That was entirely beautiful. I actually ached to be one of the goddesses in your world. :)