Friday, June 8, 2018

Naiads






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 














 

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Tell a Woman





Sahara Peace Choir singing for Women's March,Asheville NC 2018


Tell a woman that, deep inside,
deep in her heart, where no one can see,
she holds the flame that lights the world.
Tell a woman that no one can ever extinguish that flame.
Not anyone,  be he bigger than her, stronger than her, 

faster than her,
angrier than her, drunker than her, 

more convinced he is right.
This flame is our secret, all women’s.  We are born with it.
With this flame, within our hearts, 

we work two jobs while raising three kids.
And we give them piano lessons.
With this flame, we cross oceans
so our children can grow up strong without stigma.
With this flame, we nurse our elders, 

and our young ones too,
often at the same time, keeping an eye on bill payments,
scrounging for food and rent.
Tell a woman she has a huge bright flame 

ready to flare up in her heart,
and she’s not alone.   We all have one,
we who walk tall, and we who are under the thumb,
we who speak here now, and we who have been silenced,
we all share this flame, it’s an eternal flame,
it’s hot, and it’s brilliant, and it never goes away.
Tell a woman, this is our birthright, this is who we are,
we, the women, the people of the womb,
who carry the world, who yearn for love and honor,
who, somewhere deep inside, will never be denied, 

will never give in.
Tell a woman, this is who we are, 

all of us aflame, all of us women,
all of us carrying that precious fire
that guides our days, 

that reminds us of what this life really means,
that shows us its light and tells us how to move,
how to be, how to turn, how to love each day.
Tell a woman, she has a pure flame deep in her heart
that can never be extinguished, that cannot be pushed under,
that can never be broken, that does not bleed away,
that cannot be raped or beaten down,
that can only rise higher, that flares up within us,
and with each step brightens, and lights our way,
brighter and brighter, as we see our flames
more clearly, more loudly, more assuredly, more proudly,
all of us gazing at that brand new day,
not much longer now, just on the horizon,
when we look at a woman and know,
with her light, she leads the way.

Annelinde Metzner

January 23, 2013






Audience at "Rise Up Asheville," January 2013





 Girl Scouts at Black Mountain march












Young high school women who organized the Asheville march!














Friday, January 12, 2018

The music teachers





Around the ocean drum


“Shake it to the east, shake it to the west,
     Shake it to the one that you love the best....”

 
The young music teachers’ eyes gleam in their college cubicles
     as they study, study, study
     the music of all the world.

“Step it, step it, step it down.  Remember me....”

On the diploma, “Fine Arts,” a college degree,
     each note, each measure of music gathered up and treasured,
     building a matrix of joy in the heart
     to support us all for a lifetime.

“De colores, de colores se visten los campos en la primavera.....”

Studying the songs and dances
     that bring us all together, the whole human race,
     passed down from person to person, child to child
     over millennia, yes, millennia.
Why? “It’s good for the children,” says Bessie Jones,
     Sea Island mother of music,
     surehandedly guiding us all.

“Shalom chaverim, shalom chaverim....”

We study each culture, ever more in love
     with how this music is what truly matters,
     this music that holds the world together.
We memorize details of steps, costumes, melodies, harmonies,
     songs in ancient modes, polyrhythms,
     feats of mind and body set to music,
     all for this shared joy.
The smile on the partner’s face,
     the warm touch of hands clasping,
     the harmony in two, three, four, five parts,
     pulling us all together, tighter and tighter.

“A ram sam sam, a ram sam sam...”

The music teacher comes to her classes full of children
     and she knows, she knows
     we will endeavor to preserve this, to love this,
     to keep the proud meters and the intricate steps,
     with our bodies and our voices joined in love,
     remembering as we move and sing,
     what is important in this world.

“Sansa Kroma, nee-nay wo, a-che-che koko-ma...”

The music teachers with years of experience
     hear the new politics, the hatred, the viciousness,
     the ignorance, the bigotry, and we say, “NO.”
Decades of our lives, pulling this all together,
     the pride and the joy in children’s eyes learning the dance, the song,
     and “NO!” We will not give way
     to suspicion, lies and separation after all this joy.

“Miss Mary Mack, Mack, Mack,
     all dressed in black, black, black....”


All our lives have we woven our children, your child and mine,
     into a fine tapestry of all our abilities,
     stepping and singing to the World’s beat,
     together creating a future full of love.

“Brown girl in the ring, tra-la-la-la-la......”

With the people of all cultures we stand,
     knowing this is a world filled with music,
     every imaginable rhythm,
     new sounds yet unheard,
     steps we have yet to find,
because this is what matters: the love, the love,
     each people unique and brilliant, our lives all interwoven,
     all of our notes a symphony,
     all of our steps a path.

(Words in italics are from children’s songs of the world.)



Annelinde Metzner

October 2, 2017





Three kids in preschool music










Jayma studying piano












Orff instruments and recorder











Sunday, January 7, 2018

Among the Galax




Galax in bloom




I’m entranced by the smell of boiled cabbage!
     or a mean old skunk, maybe,
     or some moldy old boots.
I’m standing thick in the Galax,
     blooming now in June,
     rain so plentiful the white noise of the branch
     fills my ears and carries me away.
I’m entranced among the Galax,
     enchanted really, as this thick abundance
     of shiny round greenness sings to me,
     standing here, wet, wet.
Yes!   It’s a rainforest, wet and cool,
     lichen and moss growing up the tree trunks,
     ferns growing from stones,
     magic, magic everywhere.
Who lives in that twig house atop the standing stone?
Who giggles at me from over my shoulder, entranced like me?
It’s June!  and the Galax is flowering,
     proud white candlesticks among the rounds of green,
     here in Gaia’s garden, so perfect, so huge,
     the rhododendron buds sticky and bright pink,
     opening to white,
     the leaves so pale green and new.
I’m entranced among the Galax, and it’s June,
     a wet one, a rightful rainy one,
     and the moss is green upon the stone.
White Indian Pipes, ancient as time,
     arise like magic among the Galax, hidden and shy.
Be still!  Receive what She has for you,
     all this, the wetness, the ancient ones,
     the skunky smells, the whispers.
You are in Sacred Time now.  Don’t go too fast.
She is here for you, in the Galax.
She is more than you or I will ever know.

Annelinde Metzner
Greybeard Mountain, NC
June 16, 2012
 


Twig house






Rhododendron bloom



Gnome tree




Indian Pipes


There is a great story about Indian Pipes told by Mary Chiltosky in the book, Cherokee Plants...
"Before selfishness came into the world-that was a long time ago- the Cherokee people were happy sharing the hunting and fishing places with their neighbors. All this changed when Selfishness came into the world and man began to quarrel. The Cherokee quarreled with tribes on the east. Finally the chiefs of several tribes met in council to try to settle the dispute. They smoked the pipe and continued to quarrel for seven days and seven nights. This displeased the Great Spirit because people are not supposed to smoke the pipe until they make peace. As he looked upon the old men with heads bowed, he decided to do something to remind people to smoke the pipe only at the time they make peace."
"The Great Spirit turned the old men into greyish flowers we now call "Indian Pipes" and he made them grow where friends and relatives have quarreled. He made the smoke hang over these mountains until all the people all over the world learn to live together in peace."













Monday, January 1, 2018

Ice Bells





The icy branch


Twenty degrees, the very earth
     crunches and cracks under my boots,
     ice forming everywhere.
The world is bracing, nose-tingling,
     eye-opening, and brand new.
The lovely little creek is water-full,
     singing, singing,
     heedless of the cold,
     ice bells tinkling from each fallen branch.
Winter, and alive, and new again,
Lo!  It all begins again,
     crackling with anticipation.
The first day of the year.

Annelinde Metzner
Montreat, North Carolina
January 1, 2013

























Thursday, December 28, 2017

Not-Knowing






Sunset on the marsh


Coming home to St. Helena’s, 6 PM,
the autumn sunset is a blood orange,
then a thin line bleeding into indigo
over the vastness of the inland marshes.
O Mystery!
You weigh on me beautifully,
like a coat of fur.
My “not-knowing” cushions me all around,
as if my soul were my Mother cautioning me,
“not yet, not yet,
you don’t understand this yet.....”
The evening’s profound quietude
is a not-knowing,
heavy as owl’s wings,
almost imperceptible among the ancient oaks.
I sit back and breathe,
as more and more I see I do not know;
the night grows darker, quieter still,
and like a child sliding under an ancient quilt
sewn by many hands,
I give up, and fall asleep.

Annelinde Metzner
St. Helena’s Island, SC
November 10, 2017