Saturday, August 11, 2018

The Holy City

Grandmother Mountain, my Holy City

“This is the Holy City,” said Jouad, "Horse," our guide,
in Moulay Idriss, sparkling ancient citadel
climbing the Atlas Mountains of Morocco.
“The Holy City,” 
and She is, my Grandmother of North Carolina,
vast, ancient, singing.
Oldest mountain,
what populations whir in your ethers,
unseen to ordinary eyes?
‘’All here is holy,” said Jouad.
All here is holy!
All is of Her, each rhododendron bloom,
each fire pink,
Holy! the lichen and the moss in the rock.
Holy! the cohosh with its spiked bloom.
Holy! the whippoorwill, the thrush,
the no-see-ums buzzing up my nose.
All who live here are of Her holy being.
All are one with Her.
No need for lies or self-deceit,
no need for bargains or slight-of-hand tricks.
You, fortunate one, have stumbled into
the Holy City.
You don’t need to wear a hat,
sew cushions, or even kneel.
Here with the worms, the creaking old oaks,
the star magnolias and the blueberries
being themselves,
you are Holy too, like it or not.
Whatever time it may be on your I Pod,
you’re in Her time now, as old as it gets.
Welcome to the Holy City.
In Her powerful winds, everything changes,
limbs fall from trees, inessentials vanish,
you may lose a limb too,
or parts of your ego you don’t need.
This is the Holy City.
This is your birthplace, you and the bending oak,
you and the ladybug and the black snake.
Around Her jagged outcroppings,  
a thousand births wail through time.
Some ascend, some descend 
the winding paths of the Holy City.
She breathes on, undaunted,
gathering infrasound from all the directions.
This is the Holy City, and we Her inhabitants,
why yes, the Holy Planet it is,
all of us holy, the clear of vision,
the jaded, the obsessed,
the wounded and the whole.
All of us live in the Holy City.
Rest your bare soles on her rich Earth,
wind your toes into her sweet-smelling grass.
Prostrate your bare Soul on Her holy ground,
many times, inchworm.
She is the Mother of us all.

Annelinde Metzner
Grandmother Mountain, North Carolina
June 20, 2011

Moulay Idriss, holy city of the Atlas Mountains of Morocco

Rhododendron budding

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

When the Azaleas Bloom

When the Azaleas bloom,
don’t they grab you,
reach into you,
say, “Slow down, stop here,
stay with me, look at me,
I’m the pinkest creature you’ve ever seen!
I am a flamboyant Madam in Paris perfume.
I am every little girl’s Easter dress.
I am big and fat as five frangipani leis around your neck.
I bedeck the temple altar of Aphrodite.
I am the petaled carpet strewn before Our Lady.
My pink stamens reach for you, trumpets of your awakening.
Each of my green leaves shouts ‘New!  Begin anew!’
In my deepest recesses are gorgeous patterns
of darker pink against light.
Fat bees are engorged on me.
My blossoms crowd onto my stems
like a thousand virgins of Artemis
laying holy wreaths in our paths.”
The pink azalea says, “Here we are, perfect and whole,
powerful, adaptive, ready for change,
offering beauty open as a thousand yonis.
Stop right here, and love me!”

Annelinde Metzner

April 14, 2011
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Black Dome, This Slowness

Black Dome or "Mount Mitchell"

Join the natural world with your quietness and your slowness!
At this blessed pace, the wild raspberry
     can see you sitting nearby,
     slow as apples ripening.
At this blessed tempo,
     birds drift to the tops of trees,
     to gaze off miles and miles through the clouds.
In this sacred slowness,
    the bees take their time to choose
    this blossom, then that,
    then that one, and maybe the next.
This is how slowly the clouds creep,
     white and bulbous,
     all of us present here
     in the same breath,
     slow, inaudible, eternal.
I breathe, I fill my lungs with air.
This is all we have, all of us,
     from now until the end of the world.

Annelinde Metzner
August 6, 2010

"Black Dome" is the Cherokee name of Mount Mitchell, highest point in the East in the Black Mountain Range of the Blue Ridge Mountains where I live.

Monday, June 25, 2018

Carrying us still

My son Peter with family at 19

Don’t even have to look over my shoulder
to know the two walnut trees are there
where we hung our hammock one day like this,
Peter and I, long ago.
Don’t even have to creep under the rhododendron
to know that morels are growing there, and Indian pipes,
and if you creep further, the lake,
The lake! that on a starry night shimmers,
stars to the tenth power, moving, glistening,
and maybe even a moon.
Don't even have to lift my head
to know the mountain laurel blooms, millions upon millions,
with all their geometry,
tens time tens, and the pink, the white,
and how they float as they drop to the shimmering lake.
Is that the wee branch that gurgles by,
that gurgled by our tent then, by Peter’s big self and I,
he crashing out solid on the hard earth, snoring,
me, the princess, dragging foam pads and pillows?
In the tent, his pocket, and my pocket,
wrist watches and eyeglasses,
the setup and the takedown as smooth as water.
And out there, above us, Grandmother.
Did She know?  did She know?
Did She watch, Her patient self, 
or even pick him out for Her own,
one of those long-ago days, him so young, so fine,
an Aztec prince, perfect for the sacrifice?
On the magic path, our parkway, we walked the rails,
he thirteen, me thirty-six and us so new.
The ranger stopping- was that a warning?
Was danger hovering over us like a million laurels-
could everyone see it but us?
Yes, danger, or should we remember energy,
power,  ancient and cool as cats,
that burst forth as joy we had in each other,
so girls would say, “You come alive together,”
strange as that was for mother and son?
Long, old knowing that filled our days,
welcomed the world, overcame pain,
old knowing that never dies, we came with it, we leave with it,
we live this way still, Peter and I, at home everywhere,
(“Uh-oh, Augra, could be anywhere...”)
circling quiet as a nimble bird,
glimmering like stars, the water of the lake,
the rosy energy of Grandmother’s arms,
the powerful wind, all still here,
carrying us, carrying us still.

Annelinde Metzner
June 25, 2007

My post today is devoted to my son Peter Scott Rudolf Metzner, who passed away June 25, 2004 at the age of 29.    Grandmother carries us still!

Price Lake with Grandmother Mountain

Spirit painting of Peter by Arline Boyce

Sacred mound

Peter and myself, 1972

Peter plays the flute, 2003

Bridgid keens

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Solstice Stillness

Sacred Mound in Spring

Early, early on a Tuesday morning
so quiet, you can hear the squirrels
running spirals around the pine trunks
and scolding, scolding.
I brush my teeth while a mockingbird flirts with herself
in the rear view mirror of my car.
A wonder that the world is asleep
while brand-new webs are woven
in the rhododendron branches
where lemony rays of new sun
cut through to make them sparkle.
The rhodo blooms in tight pink buds
that burst into a myriad flowers in a bunch
while we watch.
I sit at a bench, writing, writing,
ignoring a tumult in my periphery
until, gentle and silent as the new day,
a mother doe steps into my vision,
her fawn following gingerly behind.
O, to be awake on this glorious day,
Grandmother gazing indulgently nearby,
this next new day, so young, so full,
gentle and fierce and long,
waiting like a robin’s egg
to open before our eyes.

Annelinde Metzner 

Price Lake      
June 23, 2009

Grandmother nearby in the fog

Rhododendron budding

Friday, June 8, 2018


Price Lake

    To slip into the lake in the evening
as Grandmother lays back once more to rest
and the last of the evening birds fly
and the wood thrush reminds us,
    “beauty here, everywhere,”
    the water cool and soft,
    clean, pure as a new day,
wanting to float us, wanting to play,
to cool and clear our day-worn skin,
dunking the whole head until all of us is new,
all of us begins again.
    This is one of the gifts of evening,
the cool hour of Shiva’s dancing,
our minds carried on a wave of peace,
our laughter light as dandelion seed,
floating high on the skin of the water,
the gentle, joyful giveaway of the day.

Annelinde Metzner     

June 23, 2009

Grandmother rests

Toe River Naiads

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Morning at the Sanctuary

Stone circle at Mountain Light Sanctuary

The first morning light seeps in the diamond windows 
at the Bali House.
All night, accompanying my dreams, the river roars,
punctuated with her bass tones, under the boulders,
guiding me in a language I don’t speak.
“Weee-hooo,” says the first morning bird,
and “Thump!”, a half-eaten apple falls on the deck.
All around, the exuberant vines intertwine
with the butternut and the rhododendron of the woods.
“Safe here!”, they all seem to say,
even the three butterflies who fasten themselves to my shoe.
At three AM the stars blanket the night sky,
reaching their fiery fingers into our dreams.
This morning I gaze into the misted woods,
letting the visions speak to my shadows,
letting go, letting it be exactly what it is.
Barefoot, I feel the cool stones and the dewy grass.
A day on Earth.
The sun streaking through the walls by my bed,
a whisper of thanks unbidden.

Annelinde Metzner
Mountain Light Sanctuary
July 20, 2010

In this poem I honor the Mountain Light Sanctuary, truly a sanctuary in every sense of the word, in a very remote area bordering on the National Forest in Dillingham, North Carolina.  Thanks to Michael Lightweaver for creating and maintaining this healing and rejuvenating spiritual retreat where I can find peace in the sounds of nature.

Garden of the Divine Feminine

Silica seat in the grotto of the Divine Feminine

Saturday, May 26, 2018

The Magic Pouch

Meinrad Craighead, "Enclosed Garden"

I have released my magic pouch.
Fathom this- the miracle sac nestled in my abdomen
where spirits come to Earth and find their destiny.
This wondrous space that grows exponentially
to accommodate a new human being!
I have released my uterus!
Here I am to honor you, oh alchemical gift,
carrier of the species, deliverer of DNA.
Oh place of pure regeneration!
Miracle tubes where fertilization occurs;
Ovaries, hatchery of the round perfection of femaleness,
oak-split egg basket where my mother and grandmother
held me tenderly too;
cervix, precious tunnel that, entranced,
widens a thousand times for human birth.
Oh wine-sac, imbued with love,
Oh world gift, numinous as the stars,
womb of all creation,
meeting place of divine spirit and blessed flesh,
welcome center for all our souls.
With this release I honor you, magic sac,
locus of intense and sexual feeling,
dark cave I have loved and honored all these years.
Woman’s divine chamber
which we must guard from violation,
our own and our sisters’,
which we pray for and protect
throughout our lives.
Sanctuary and cauldron of mind, spirit and flesh.
In letting you go, I hold you up,
I see you now for what you are.
I prostrate myself before you.
Oh womb who has made of me a shaman,
as all women are!
I have offered my body for the incarnation of souls.
If women deem it right and good
for all of us and for ourselves,
we will usher in a life.
Oh magic sac that made me
a conduit of the divine,
I hold you now in my open palm,
acknowledging your perfection,
astonished as, like a butterfly just emerged from its cocoon,
I open my hand and let you go free.

Annelinde Metzner

October 26, 2015

     I'm reposting my poem "The Magic Pouch" which I wrote three years ago for my uterus.  I had just undergone a hysterectomy and I wanted to honor this miraculous organ which is central to and emblematic of womanhood.  The poem is now part of the We'Moon Datebook for 2018, full of women's writings and art. It's on page 99!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Magdala, Tower

Mary Magdalene by Brother Robert Lentz

Magdala, Tower, Queen of my days,

You are not Spirit, not Ether, not Will ‘o the Wisp.

but flesh and blood, a woman like me,

and my teacher.

I see You in burgundy-red, the Blood-Root flower,

the Wake Robin, deep red trillium of the mountains,

the royally curled and woody flower of the Spicebush.

You are so real.

And when You walk on Earth,

the steps of Your beautiful feet are firm.

Priestess, daughter of Isis,

Well-trained in lore and wise,

how I crave the touch of Your oil upon my face.

MM is here!  Mary Magdalene,

here for Her own millennium,

and the voice You bring has no shame in who You are,

who we all are, Woman, strong, deep,

burgundy-red and sexual.

You walk in the power of the Sacred Night,

here to walk wherever You must,

through Love, through Transformation,

unto Union with the Divine.

With Your powerful arms

and Your dark-red hair glinting like amber,

You guide us all through these darkest of days.

Mary Magdalene, You stand grounded

even as we hang in torment,

with Your strong and womanly Priestess arms

ready to carry us through.

Annelinde Metzner
April 17, 2012 

I'm feeling the presence of Mary Magdalene very strongly these days, maybe because the feast day of Her divine child, Sarah La Kali, celebrated by Roma people from all over the world, is coming up on May 24th.  
     I'm very excited and happy that on Mary Magdalene's feast day, July 22nd, 2018,  my own musical setting of this poem will be sung by the soul-stirring soprano, Kim Hughes, at St. James Episcopal in Black Mountain, 2 PM.   Seven of my solo songs for the Goddess will be performed, as well as a new poem, and presentations by the clergy on the Divine Feminine as well. 
     Three of the pieces feature Rita Hayes on flute and Isabel Castellvi on cello.
     A duet of my setting of Alice Walker's "We Have a Beautiful Mother" will be sung by Kim and Jen Worthen, and they will perform a few more songs as a duo.
     Plan to come and share the Goddess with us!

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

This Newness

How soft are the new green leaves of spring?
I gently pull my palm along the tenderest
pale bright new sprouts, new as a baby.
I brush the stamens of the azalea, and my thumb
feels nothing, they are too tender for me to sense.
“Whenever you see the birds, 
you have not actually seen them.”
Can I really absorb this newness, my Mother’s own birth?
Can I know this now, in this body,
with these five senses, so crude and dull?
What is it that knows?
Like an astronomer gazing at the sky,
I try, I sense as best I can,
reaching, imagining, breathing with Her.

Annelinde Metzner
Meher Baba Center, South Carolina
April 13, 2011

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Wake Robin

Red Trillium

Blood-red trillium,
      with your sumptuous variegated leaf patterns,
      arising in big colonies early, so early in spring
      amid dry leaves and old twigs,
Triple Goddess, you sprout from the dry earth
      innocently, as if it were every day
      ancient knowledge comes forth into our sight.
You lie barely visible at our feet,
      one of the old ones, short and well-adapted
      to the forest floor, a gnome
      with a new red cap.
But no pretty pink here, nor lacy white.
      You are of the blood of the Earth Mother herself,
      and even Her rich warm blood has beauty,
      and she will not hide this, our Mother.
      She bleeds, and Her blood is beautiful.
Wake Robin, wake us to know
      where e’er we walk, She feels and knows.
      We kiss the Earth, but She bruises, too,
      in bloodroot, in trillium, in fracking, in clearcut, in war.
Wake, Robin, don’t be a fool!
      Here is Life’s own rich display, ineffable,
      the upward thrust, the very orgasm of Spring.
She is here today, for you, for us,
      crowding upward for us here,
      but once only.

Annelinde Metzner
Flat Creek North Carolina

March 23, 2012

Yellow trillium

Botanical Gardens in Asheville, NC


Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The Mulberry Tree

Mulberry tree

A walking meditation, I step downward
to the edge of the sea wall.
Silent as the marsh grass and the pluff mud,
all sound is absorbed but the “tweee” and “caw”
of the waterbirds.

Here is how I step:
        Give thanks for the egret.   Give thanks for me.
        Give thanks for the pelican.  Give thanks for me.
        Give thanks for the crow.    Give thanks for me.

Gazing out to the Beaufort River,
not really a river but a ceaseless pulsation of water,
forward and back, ebb and flow,
I sink my roots deep as the oaks by the shore.
Homeward I turn, and almost in the door,
above me, mulberries!
Ripe and black as the night,
they offer themselves to my fingers and mouth,
turning them purple with delight.
Goddess, how you surprise me!
How I kiss you with each step,
‘til you tap me on my shoulder,
opening me, purple, indigo, black as night
with my burst-open welcoming of You.

Annelinde Metzner
Beaufort, South Carolina
March 30, 2012

Beaufort River

Sea wall

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Looking Glass

Looking Glass Mountain

The earth’s egg,
she nestles here in her corpus luteum.
Bold and firm, how deep, how deep?
Huge egg, birth place, bursting place,
eminently fertile stone ground of all beginnings.
The earth’s egg,
smooth as silk at the long fall,
an Easter egg frosted with green.
In peace a buzzard glides by on the thermals,
loving Her, all bliss.

Annelinde Metzner    

July 25, 2009

Grandmother looking at the sky

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Birthday Morning

Stepping out of my house on March Eighteenth,
-really, I am stepping INTO something-
the world is indigo in patches,
almost foreboding,
and light with new morning sun,
golden, slanted, like the flecks in lapis lazuli.
This is my day!
This hushed morning my birthday gift,
as I step gingerly with all my aches,
stepping out the door as though into a cathedral,
and a blessing.
And a huge choir! Almost Spring,
a thousand birds chorus their welcome-day songs.
There is not a breeze.
The world is still, a snapshot,
reminding, reminding,
Love Me.

Annelinde Metzner
March 18, 2018