a mid-spring evening for women

a mid-spring evening for women

with the Pink Full Moon

In Southern, Vermont

Monday, April 30th
6:00 to 8:00 pm
Marlboro, Vermont
(in between Brattleboro & Bennington)

Join a mid-spring evening with women to…

Elevate the human condition.
Retrieve lost aspects of self.
Experience the chakras with music, movement & meditation.
Enjoy a stunningly disguised workout.
Rest, stretch & dance in a safe & welcoming circle of women.
Be yourself.
HAVE FUN!

Sink into 111 minutes of gently-guided flow from the earth to sky led by lifelong educator, yoga & yogadance instructor Kelly Salasin. Experience & skill irrelevant. If you can take a brisk walk and get up from and down to the floor, you’ve got this. Women of all ages welcome. (Youth of a certain age with advance permission.)

Experience the body’s energy centers—from grounding to flowing—from boundaries to open-heartedness—from playful expression and voiced truth to clear seeing—to silent knowing—shaped by an intuitively-crafted soundtrack, certain to move you–inside & out.

Come as you are. Tired. Weary. Anxious. Energized. Grieving. Inspired. Ready. Reluctant. Fit. Out of shape. Introverted. Extroverted. Hesistant.

Allow the energy of the gathering to rise up inside you as we organically weave an evening of re-lease, reintegration, and regeneration with music, movement & meditation.

Bring a small journal or notebook, a water bottle, and some kind of mat (or blanket), dress comfortably to move (layers work great), move barefoot (or with clean non-marking soles.) Optional: bring a something to symbolize new growth for the altar.

HOLD YOUR SPACE with the link below. (Add your name & email address to the payment along with one word or a short phrase about what brings you to the dance.)

Let Your Yoga Dance (LYYD) Instructor KELLY SALASIN has been leading dancing journeys (classes & retreats) through the chakras with women in Southern Vermont for over a decade. She is a yoga teacher, a regular assistant to leading presenters at Kripalu Yoga & Health Center, and the creator of Writing through the Chakras, an online journey for women around the world. She is also someone who still has trouble touching her toes and has spent most of the winter holed up in her home in the woods of Marlboro and so really welcomes this opportunity to gather and move among women.

The Outback at Marlboro Elementary (aka. the school gym) on Route 9 lends itself to the kind of playful expansion that is welcome in the 5th chakra, while the intimacy of the women’s candlelit circle creates a powerful container for warming, connecting & integrating.

Hold your space: https://www.paypal.me/KellySalasin/25

 

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Aging in place

Aging in place

In the middle of winter & now into spring–on snow-covered roads and icy ones and mud-ridden too–I find myself traveling to the bedsides of those who are aging in place in my part of the state; and I am astounded by their spirits and by the devotion of their caregivers, and also by the plight of adult children caring for parents, or one spouse caring for another or siblings doing the same.

I am struck when I hear that opting for Nursing Home care comes with fewer strings, financially & practically; and this reminds me of my early years at home with my babies, if only I’d chosen a daycare to raise my little ones, it could have been subsidized, but if I gave up my career to be with my children so that they too could “age in place,” I would lose my foothold in the work world and exponentially lag behind in my capacity to earn and thus become increasingly disheartened in that regard, not to mention less and less represented in the wider world.

(Think Congress.)

Unlike some of our counterparts in the developed world, we do not prioritize those who need care and those who give care–to the sick, the disabled, the elderly, the refugee, the lonely, the downtrodden, the minority, the mother, the child–namely–women–who as a result of unpaid/underpaid caregiving are among the most impoverished around the world no matter their race, educational background and marital status; and increasingly so as they age, with a wider income gap between women and men in the United States than anywhere in the Western world.

~

When my children were young, I tended to them in much the same way as I would have wanted to be tended, and I imagine the same is true for adult children caring for parents.

“We’re next, Kelly,” said one such caregiver, at the end of our hour-long interview, and this is quite a sobering thought, particularly as I see parents become children, and then infants, in their offspring’s hearts.

Dear Bernie,

Dear Bernie,

I moved to Vermont in 1993, the year before I turned thirty, two years before my husband & I became parents.
 
It was in Vermont that something else was conceived inside–a growing awareness & engagement in politics; Because it was in Vermont that I first discovered politics beyond the pocketbook.
 
Bernie, it was in our early years in Vermont that my young family sat beside you at the Chicken Supper when you were our Congressman, and where we later watched with pride as our son joined you in the Strolling of the Heifers parade down Main Street during your campaign for Senate; and when time sped forward and that same son went off to school at the University of Vermont, my youngest son and I were with you on the waterfront as you announced your campaign for President; which is to say that Bernie Sanders & Vermont are inextricably linked in my understanding of both the rights & responsibilities of citizenship.
 
But it’s not that for which I’d like to thank you now, Bernie. It’s something larger than one family. It’s the way your presidential campaign gave young people, not just in Vermont, but around this nation, hope. It’s the way you tethered their hearts and minds to a purpose larger than themselves, and to the possibility of something more than the cultural shadow assigned them–ignorance, irrelevance, consumerism & self-absorption.
 
Bernie, your campaign, your voice, your tenacious heart woke the heart of a nation and seeded a sense of possibility that is taking root in the consciousness & action of our youngest citizens in this most troubling time for our democracy.
 
Bernie, you have shown them how to fight the good fight.
 
You have proven to them that they are not alone.
 
This has inspired them to lead with love.
 
This has inspired them to vote with passion & purpose.
 
This has made the privilege of citizenship–whole.
 
~Kelly Salasin, age 54

Mother of Lloyd, 22, and Aidan, 17, ready to vote in the next election.
 
 
Winter notes, released…

Winter notes, released…

december:

i love how the winter sun persists, even through a snowcloud sky. and how the whetstone brook looks like it’s filled with floating marshmallows. and how the world has become a snow globe that some kid keeps shaking.

~

forecast:

zero & sunny

 

january:

our outdoor solar lights (so tenacious in summer) barely last through dinnertime, but the moonlight follows, brightening everything white, like a spotlight on the theater of winter

~

stark, sober clarity.

this is what i love/hate about the ending of the holiday season, and about winter itself, and about aging.

my menopausal bones ache with this cold, and now that the house is emptied of the evergreen and its friendly accompaniments, family included, i fear myself sharp-edged, like the hard world outside, absent of color and fecundity

but there is an invitation extended in this stark sobriety, necessitating love and consciousness, warm woolen blankets and poetry, thick stews and storytelling…

i listen to my bones, to the bones of an aching world, the bones of the earth itself, and i understand suffering

in this spaciousness, i find myself silently spinning a cocoon, breath and light-filled, enveloping me, even as i resist the vulnerability of becoming nothing but air

~

From -21 to 56 in a week.

Water is running down the slope of the hill toward the house, serpentine-like, under the snow, appearing like the silvery stretchmarks across the flesh of a pregnant mother.

“Flood warnings,” we’re told, and sometimes delivery leads to a flood, as my cousin’s did, and she almost died, right there in the hospital, because the bleeding was on the inside, and they already had the baby.

How so are we, like #45, grabbing what we want while disregarding the essential sovereignty of the life-giver… water, soil, air, woman, yoni, breast.

~

On Sunday afternoon, we took a family walk up our wooded road, and our way, we had to step aside to let a truck pass.

I watched as a load of cordwood passed me by and wondered if he ever lost any, and wouldn’t it be nice if he did so while passing my driveway.

It’s been a cold, cold winter, and we’ve burned through more wood than we typically do, which must why someone is ordering a cord this late in the season; and also explains my excessive cord envy, further expressed as I coveted another neighbor’s neatly stacked piles as we walk by their home.

The truck passed us again on our way back down MacArthur Road, and I looked, but there wasn’t a single log remaining in the bed.

Casey has long cut down our wood himself, and its grueling work without a horse or a tractor, and I feel a growing affection for his labor and the way it warms us through winter, and also, I think about how much simpler it would be to turn a dial, and a lot less sweeping too, and less angst about whether it’s dry enough or will last or will burn our house down.

“Why don’t you just turn on the lights,” my son says when he arrives home from school to a dark, candlelit house; and I guess it’s the same with trading in the woodstove for a dial, it would rob me of the intimacy of warming not just my toes but my soul.

~

What if I, like the metal roof on our timber frame–exposed to a season with more than a dozen hours of frozen darkness–also opened to the morning light, letting it warm me through, until in one big gush, I released the weight I’d carried through the cold…

february:

I wake, in the dark, and reach my foot across the flannel to see if it’s morning. The warmth of his thigh is my reply. “Go back to sleep,” I say, but I’m 54. I no longer listen. (Did I ever?) I lay there in the dark, wondering why. Have I had enough sleep already? Do I need to pee? What day is it? Is it the weekend? I lift my head to make out the numbers on his clock. It’s not even 5. Just then, Jimmy Cloud arrives, and I remember that yesterday was Wednesday, a snow day. Must be a lot; it sounds like the front loader. He lights up the woods out my window, and I wonder what the foxes make of it all. Beep. beep. beep. Are they asleep in their den or out hunting? I haven’t seen them since the babies grew up. Jimmy plows for a good long while, and when I feel Casey begin to stir, I get up to pee. He gets up then too.”I might as well stay up,” he says. I listen as the stairs creak as he heads down to start the fire. Later, he brings me rose tea, and I invite him back to bed to cuddle.

~

And also, yesterday, while putting on my rose shirt, in preparation for a weekend of writing & meditation, a paper wasp stung me on the heart, through the flesh of my breast…

~

Must be windy. Or a UPS drop off. Or is it a bear? I’ve been seeing posts about bears. I’m trying to meet this deadline. It sounds like its trying to get in. Maybe it’s just the shovels on the porch falling over.

Oh my gosh, I hear it walking around the house. Maybe it’s a robber.

I close my computer. Grab the phone to look like I’m calling the police.

(Oh, right… it’s just the sound of snow pounding off the roof.)

~

 march

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Eastern Exposure

Eastern Exposure


My youngest was in his 1st year of preschool when we cleared the land, and now he’s in his last year of high school, and finally I’ve stopped demanding/dreaming/coveting my neighbor’s eastern exposure; and instead come to delight in the way my wintry days begin as a jewel, sparkling through his trees, into my welcoming hands.

(And maybe it takes 9 years of prayer to surrender to the gifts in our own hands.)

Iron sky

Iron sky

Schiele, detail visipix.com

i wake to an iron sky; without a sliver of sun to lighten the density of my mind. i look down toward the pond and find it frozen too; while sounds from the road rise up through the bare trees, leaving me tense, as if house guests or repairmen or deliveries or burglars are heading up my driveway this very moment. the woodstove burns well on a day like today, but i sit at the table with my second cup of tea, unable to kindle a flame inside. i feel every bit as hard as the earth, until i look out and see the snow falling, and i surrender once again to the sweet return of its gentle rhythm–the gift of winter–an old woman’s life-giving tears.