Trusting the Flow: The Art of Turning Up

A week and a half ago, between the opening and closing curtains of a wedding and a funeral, I did my very first podcast; another leap into trusting the flow.

And I notice, as I begin to let go of the old, the new and unseen doors that start to shimmer and glow, subtly lifting out of two-dimensionality like magic-eye art. By softening our gaze on the very same page, reality shifts and coalesces into a new and breathtakingly multidimensional stage.

Magic, and yet nothing of the sort…   just possibilities and pathways that were there all along, obscured by the shutters of mind and its fearful fastenings and locks. And so it was with this, as Julia Chi Taylor – the extraordinary soul I’ve been voyaging with through my internal seas – invited me to take part in her new Podcast series, ‘Conversations with a Bodhisattva’.

But how fascinating to watch the inner protesters rally so fast – a surging horde of banners and shouts, all chaining themselves to the shutters with unequivocal handcuffs of doubt!

‘Danger!’ they shriek, ‘Don’t do it! Don’t risk! You’ll be vulnerable before strangers, self-manacled in the village stocks!’

If the only way I can speak now is from the epicentre of my truth – from the tenderest spots still healing from their loosening thorns – then to trust to the free-flow of an interview feels like launching my leaky vessel into the torrents of Niagara falls.

I’ve already leapt with my blog, so why does this dive feel even higher? Because speech is such an instant and irretrievable creature, so different to the small woodland mammal of the written word that forages so quietly beneath life’s delicate leaf-litter. While writing can curl up and hibernate for as long as it needs, nesting unseen in the roots and thickets of daily success and strife, the spoken word shrieks with immediacy – a discharged bullet whose trajectory can’t be changed.

Am I ready to fledge, to learn on the wing, without the time to perfect and to tweak? To be a mayfly of expression, a momentary flutter in life’s skies, preserved in amber though so briefly conceived?

Of course the cinema of my mind screens me bumbling haphazardly, a clumsily-blundering daddy-long-legs of orality! Prattling hither-and-thither, shedding legs along the way, tangled in endless webs of ghastly ‘what if’s’…

What if I can’t express what I mean? What if my fluency startles and falters? What if it dries-up like roadkill under the truck-lights of immediacy?

What if I say it all wrong?

There is, of course, no such thing. Nothing to be done but release the comfort-blanket of ‘right’, and surrender instead to the simplicity of is. To turn up as I am, as raw and unadorned as a Christmas tree in February; no baubles, no lights. And trust, as Jonny once wrote, ‘Ah… but you’re decked with fairy lights all year round lady, don’t you see? How lucky I am that you let your needles drop for me’.

Something that applies to us all if we can only trust our inner lights to guide the way, instead of grasping at those B&Q aisles of decoration and display. To be who we are, bare branches and all, and trust the anchor of our roots as the winds shift and sway.

And so I watched those inner protesters march the streets of my psyche, and thanked them politely for their loudspeakers of doubt. Then took the inner projectionist aside to suggest we change the music, brighten the lights…

Time to banish this dis-empowering delusion that to be worthy of being heard we must be finished and complete, reclining in our armchair of success and basking in achievement’s firelight;

To tie a bandana on my true-self, don the 80’s crop-top of spirituality, and thrill at the speedball while shouting ‘bring it on!’ to the Rocky theme-tune!

Sylvester Stallone knew what’s what, all those years ago.

It’s not about ‘winning’; it’s the art of showing up.

And so I did.

The beginning…

Photo by Jared Erondu on Unsplash

I welcome all comments! If you would like to share your thoughts on this post, please click here and scroll to the bottom of the page to enter them in the comment box.

You can listen to my podcast with Julia Chi Taylor by clicking on the green play button below:

Jewels in the Turd

As I walked barefoot across the lawn this morning, delighting in the nodding pestemons and bee-deep lavender, my pleasure was interrupted by an abrupt encounter with a small turd.

Fear not, I didn’t step in it. But oh, what a rude little serpent of distaste! Like the discovery of an overripe spot on your nose after a languid Sunday lie-in with a bright new lover, its presence spat me fatly out of my romantic reverie.

The young turd stared boldly back, throwing down the gauntlet of bad decorum and willing this old fogey to make a fuss.

 ‘Bloody cats!’ spluttered my mind, self-righteous with dirty-disdain.

A pause. A recognition. A chuckle. What codswallop, I adore my feline friends! So why this knee-jerk indignity at nature’s ways? 

I looked again. Noticed the sheen of bluebottles clustered on its crust in earnest industry.

And realised: Life is teeming with such moments of choice, the majority made unconsciously. I could choose to see a turd covered in flies and play the tired old record of disgust.


I could choose to see a banquet of living jewels, dazzling in iridescent dinner jackets at their giant ochre feast! To wonder at the crusade of little winged recycling-champions going about their permacultured day.

I took a moment to admire the beady sequins of their bodies with their taut metallic glaze; marvel at the little mascara-brushed eyelashes of their legs and the maroon globes either side of bomber-pilot helmets, the stunning complexity of their minutely pixelated eyes.

I’ve always been tickled by the saying, ‘You can’t polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter’.

I’m even more delighted to realise there’s no need. Nature sends them their very own living sequins – with miniature delivery-wings no less! Oh tiny fecal fairies, if we consciously clean our minds of prejudices, judgments and beliefs we can see how miraculous you are, and the parable of truth you represent.

Just like the Universe, flies lay their eggs in life’s excrement because it’s such rich nutrition for growth.  So no matter how unpleasant things seem, there’s always a hot steam of transformation in every cowpat and a glitter of jewels on every turd.

The trick is to take off our smeary mind goggles.

And learn to truly see.

Photo by Egor Kamelev from Pexels

I welcome all comments! If you would like to share your thoughts on this post, please click here and scroll to the bottom of the page to enter them in the comment box.