Creative Expression, Life at SMC

Floral Notes and Bardo: Crystal as Lotus

This morning I abandoned “other” projects and felt lighter. Only bringing the SMC beauty into being.

She’s gone, I’ve wept. Shadow mood yesterday after too much low-alcohol beer the night before, after three hours of driving on farm roads — reviewing recordings — after dropping her off at the terminal, weeping, after having too much food to celebrate (?) together — last meal sort of thing.

When we were pulling off the land friends came out from their offices and put dandelions in our windshield wipers, hugged Heather, skipped and danced and waved behind the car as we pulled off.

The previous morning Joshua approached our breakfast table and encouraged Heather to design some things for the gift store. He expressed warm appreciation for who and how she is, how she dresses, her overall aesthetic and creative way. He wept. He said: “The more of you in the world, the better.”

The previous night we had an amazing banquet to honor Heather and Sophie — land steward, who was also leaving. Toasts, feast, beauty, hugs, notes, gifts. It was full, huge hug. And then we had a campfire at our house.

Oh… weeping, riding that wave. Heater’s departure. Holding her as she transitioned. A small death. And now, both of us in bardo — her’s in California, and mine — right where I’ve been. But now, with her absence, rather than her hand in mine while walking around. Quiet, space. Hello?

Ahh… It has happened and passed. A beautiful song. And now, I’m feeling towards projects. Feeling into this phase. This final phase. Almost final. I’ve got a month, and then a break (visit her in Seattle) and then Sacred World Assembly.

I’m going down to Red Rocks to see the Flaming Lips tonight — blow all the narrative into confetti.

Tomorrow will be sleepy, maybe. A massage in the evening, and then space. Saturday, practice, and a sweat lodge ceremony in the afternoon. Sunday, getting into it a bit. Waking into the next phase. I am dreaming of: music-making, deep study, and wrapping it all up. Land-loving, jamming, and “entering the vajra world.”

It is a blessed life. I’ll be sending her notes in the mail. I’ll sing her songs from afar. I’ll kiss this land, dance in my aloneness, love her all the time. I am not alone. Dance in my aloneness. Dance in my life-fabric, in her gaze, always, and gaze of the guru. This sunny life, these whispering trees, this dusty road, this incredible cabin, these friends as rock faces at dawn, this delicious tea, this groovy job, masters in my midst, erupting love, joy, creative birth, re-birth, a million deaths and only more ordinary, magic, this SMC dream, these friends, food, flowers. Floral notes and bardo. Bliss, dream, awake, Zopa Chime, guitar, sun, Ginsberg behind me on Marpa Point, Bhanu on the book-shelf, Mipham on the horizon, Malfi on my desk, Phish in my dream, jamming away, ink on my fingers, crystal on my windowsill as lotus, calligraphies on my walls, sacred marks on my gushing heart mind.

— May 26, 2016

Floral Notes and Bardo is a regular feature on our blog in which an SMC resident shares his experience of living here on the land, in the mandala. 

About the Author

travisTravis Newbill is a writer, musician, and aspirant on the path of meditation.  He currently resides at Shambhala Mountain Center, where he handles the SMC Blog, and other marketing tasks. He also gives tours of the Great Stupa and is empowered as a Shambhala Guide — a preliminary teaching position. 


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