the second phase of creation

your creations become something altogether different
once you expose them to air.
they oxidize
if you will
like blue blood turns red
when it breaches the skin
or reel of film blooms
in a dark room.
when your inner life is brought
to the light of day you are no longer
in control of what
it will become.

it no longer belongs to you.

you have relinquished ownership.

suddenly
it belongs to everyone
& transforms into something
unrecognizable.
it is natural to fear this process
if we consider the act of creation sufficient
in an of itself
but the truth is this is only
the first step.
we must have a sacred space 
to expose our beloved creations
to the light so they may become
what they were meant to be.
they must enter the second phase: 
surrender.

will

i prayed
& asked ‘what am i to do’–

She gave me a stone
in my chest firm
& undeniable.

She said

I give you your Will.
your Will is yours
& yours alone--
in Me
you know where to go
for I have taught you
to read maps
I have taught you
navigation.
isn't this why
you are called here, after all?
for no matter where you go
you have your own Will to return to.
it will not waver
in storm or sea
it will not tumble 
to the four winds
it will not be shaken
by the cares of the world.
listen to your truth.
don't you know
the music of its voice by now?
hasn't the world shown you hunger?

haven't you scavenged for morsels
the forests deep and dark--
haven't you slaked your thirst
in the cold waters within?

dear dreamer

the world needs its story-tellers
dreamers
lovers
wordsmiths
artsmiths
quiet helpers
kindness-doers
flower-pickers
letter-senders

creators of all sorts
walks
shapes
& sizes.

If you are one of these
yield to yourself
& the creativity that lives
in you--

do not hold out the world.

for it needs your gifts
it needs your love
it is thirsty for your joy.

two kinds of fear

there are two kinds of fear:

one tells you to turn on your heel, honey, and walk away.

this type of fear whispers you know better.

the other is a big, fat neon arrow pointing toward your dreams.

with this type of fear, you’re petrified, but you sense something delicious in your soul, something that’s begging to be brought into the world.

trust your heart to know the difference.

theater of the imagination

All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players
-As You Like It, Act II, Scene VII

Maybe when you act, you’re not necessarily putting up a false facade.

Maybe you are exaggerating, for theatrical effect, parts of yourself that already exist.

You are a living, breathing hyperbole.

You don’t have to live a double life. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be simple, a matter of choosing which parts of yourself to emphasize and which to keep tucked behind the curtain, out of sight but still very much present.

Just because parts of yourself—the wild, loud, sensual, scandalous—are hidden, does not mean they don’t play a role. They are the ones working the pulleys, flicking the switches, turning on the lights and cueing the music.

They are the secret behind your radiance, the reason for the light behind your smile.

Your secret: it’s not your work that’s making you happy. It’s your inner world.

It’s so bright it radiates outward and colors all that you touch.

The mask may hide your true face, but it’s a beautiful mask, something you’re fond of wearing.

Like a magician employing distraction to great effect, you engage in emotional slight of hand. A light deception, nothing to be ashamed of—on the contrary, essential to survival.

It is merely a choice of where to train the spotlight.

Your workday then becomes a playful dance. Your uniform, your costume. Each movement a deliberate expression of your newfound awareness.

Give yourself permission to feel beautiful without regard to your reflection in the mirror. Say your lines, take a bow, and then go home.

Remember what happens when you screw up onstage? You improvise. You take that mistake and you run with it. The show must go on.

The trick is to keep your eyes up and out. The second you make eye contact with a member of the audience, boom, your dance, your lines are wiped clean from your memory. In day-to-day life, you can’t avoid making eye contact. But you can keep your chin up and your inner focus up and out. The woman behind the curtain keeps her gaze high and her inner eye trained on the horizon.