The Dance

A poem by Lena Star Helen describing her healing experience. This was such a delight to read, I had to share.

(Photo by Kristen Francis Photography)

To talk about the journey
the journey of my soul
down through the underworld
deep into the chasm of unknowing

Karen,  my guide,  my teacher
holds a place of honor
delicately opening the passage of knowing
uncovering the untold tales of self
Revealing the pulse,  the force of my existence
We journeyed

Karen,  Mountain Woman to the Cherokee,  Spirit Keeper to me
offered direction,  like a mother beside her infant,  gentle
like an elder in his wisdom,  cutting

A cup of salvation, life in the garden
clear, abundant, all ways new
The liquid of redemption cradles my wounds

We journey,  she beckoned,  I entered
a dance
Her leading,  me following
a dance
Where my heart is born,  healing
a dance
Where my spirit rises, singing
a dance
Where my soul rests,  bows humbly and says
Thank you

Going inside

window-shoppingI live in a cave.

I retreat.

Aloneness is my oxygen.

I can beat myself up about this.

I can look out my window and see hurry, community and gathering.

I am jealous of people who know their roots and their tribe.

The pendulum swings.

I go out and do. I smile, brush up against strangers on the sidewalk. I sit in noisy pubs with my husband and eat bar food.

Sometimes I move into the city and offer myself. Most often I move away.

I have had the same clients for thirty-five years. They know me. I come forward to help them. I disappear and don’t list my phone number.

I can not be in the world as others do.

I envy it. I envy their ability to stay ‘out’ focused day after day, year after year.

But I can not be them. My life is inside, behind a closed door.

The outer world makes me empty. I can walk in it for awhile, but tear and break if I linger.

I arrive at this place again and again, at this pulling and pushing, at this going out and coming in.

I must go in and in and in, alone if I hope to endure.

Age has allowed more grace.

I have gentled the part of me that rails against my needs.

She no longer carries a stick to beat me with. She has surrendered.

Now, she puts on the kettle and whispers, its okay, just do what you need to do.

For Dicksie

The child is goneumbrella-in-air

Bonds broken

The fabric weak from too much mending

is asked to rend once more


The earthly witness records the trauma


while heaven sends its angels

to take its traveler home


With useless shell discarded

No need to struggle more

It’s just the pain of parting

that stands constant by the door


So in the evening shadows

when grief hides just below

listen for his whisper

and in your heart you’ll know


That though we walk with feet

cemented in this place

his heart is now expansive

his soul is filled with grace.

A complement I’d like to give myself

I love your strength, your no non-sense shit-kicking side.

I love your gentle core of light and the way they sit next to each other on the bench.

 Your spirit is free; a tether broken

Go ahead and find adventure.

Don’t limit yourself.

Break wide open and embrace it all.

Why Not?

 I appreciate your truth-telling honesty and your ability to see into this world and the next.

It’s okay to own those shiny slippers.

You don’t need to hide them under the bed.

Put them on, walk around and well…why not? a little.

 written on valentines day, 2008

Multiple Personality

Today I was a:


Bed maker

Shower taker

Laundry woman



Dream consultant

Safe place for children



Care taker for dogs

Care taker for cats

Burial person for a bird

Radio audience


Library patron

Grocery shopper

Check writer

Postal patron


Ashram visitor

Dinner Guest


Gift receiver









written May 28, 2008


Your life is moving toward you

Your dreams are opening like little parachutes in a spring sky

Open your hands

Embrace what comes

Bring it into your body

Breathe it  ~ Own it

Why not?

You’ve waited long enough

Believing is the key that opens the door

To believe allows you to stand in the center of yourself

To burn at the core

To doubt is to create division

To stand next to yourself

To become weak with the energy it takes to move back and forth between separate minds




Be of one mind

Welcome yourself home and celebrate your arrival.

written March 12, 2008