Why Anibus has come to stay…

anubis egyptian god who ushered souls into the afterlife 5.5X9.5 in ink on paper 2017

anibus 9.5X6.5″ ink on paper, 2017. $45

Anibus was an Egyptian god known for ushering souls to the afterlife.

This form appeared during an early morning meditation, say 3AM.  At the time, I was unfamiliar with Anubus, but when I finished, the image looked familiar and the thought came, jackal.

Indeed, jackal is one of the names by which this god is known, but it wasn’t until I showed the work to my son that I heard “Egyptian god,” though, somewhere in my subconscious mind, I knew.

Since I am often awakened or simply unable to sleep in the wee hours of the morning, being disturbed (I believe) by discarnate souls, (trembling, coldness, nausea, nightmares, acute anxiety), I wonder if Anibus has appeared to me for this reason:  a spirit guide for those who have lost their way and found me, the listener.

Always, I command these energies to go on their proper way, each to their own appointed path in the company of angels and guides.

Perhaps Anibus has heard me so many times, he has come to stay.

poem in pictures: river. tree. lizard. knee

look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better

Albert Einstein

guadalupe state park, hill country, texas

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cypress trees with knees

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d. ellis phelps is the author of Making Room for George, Moon Shadow Sanctuary Press, 2016:  a tender love story about family and one woman’s journey toward her true self.  Free for kindle unlimited users.  Softcover available for Prime shipping.

Suggested Reading

the beginning of change is always a new idea…   When I asked other formidable women to list for me titles of books they have read that empowered them, gave them courage to change,…

Source: Suggested Reading

new publications: art & poetry

 

how many painters does it take to change a nation 12X12 in mm on paper 2016

how many painters does it take to change a nation 12X12″ mm on paper, 2016 (c) d. ellis phelps

Voices de la Luna

A San Antonio based, Quarterly Literature & Arts magazine has published this painting and one of the poems I wrote for the  Tupelo Press 30/30 Project in March, 2016.

These two pieces represent the beginnings of an increasingly political bent in my art & writing.  To my surprise, the painting has sold.  So much for trying to “make things pretty” when they are decidedly not.

Here you see the matriarchal warrior goddess questioning:  how many painters does it take to change a nation; how many $ does it take to trump justice.

It is not simply a female leader we need.  It is a compassionate, honest, dignified, just, intelligent leader (of any gender) we need.  & since the populace seems blinded and deceived by drama and captivated by fear, I wonder what kind of cataclysmic event it will take to bring us again to our metaphorical knees or whether All that is Whole and Good and Pure and True will move us to redemption.

How does Great Spirit move in you?  This is how it moves in me:

if 

i had attended

the workshop

i would have missed

this:

visitation of cranes

follow this link to read the rest of the poem in Voices

 

 

National Poetry Month: 30 poems in 30 days

DMotherBelov back-001

What to do first?

Once, a writer friend, visiting my studio, viewing a bronze sculpture of mine (still sitting on my hearth today) said, “It must be hard for you to decide what to do first when you get up in the morning!”  She said this because I paint, I’ve done some sculpture, I write (poetry, a novel, a blog…sometimes) and I do body & soul work with private clients.  She was thinking all that doing and going in so many directions might be causing me some conflict.  She’s right.  But I don’t seem to be able to stop.

I’ve been working in this circular way as an artist for twenty-five years, each media delightfully informing the other.

However, last month (March, 2016), I agreed to write 30 poems in 30 days for Tupelo Press’s 30/30 Project.  This very creative way of raising funds for the small press was a wonderful challenge that, as you can imagine, kept me quite focused!

It was a thrilled to see my DAILY work “published” on the Tupelo 30/30 blog pages alongside the other six accomplished poets who also wrote during March.  The poems are still “up” through the end of April,  National Poetry Month  & you can read them here.

Pick up the pen…

This coming Friday, April 15, 2016 from 7-9PM, I will be very happily reading in Austin at Malvern Books, with other awesome Tupelo 30/30 alumni from previous months and/or years:  Robert Okaji, Christine Beck, Pamela Paek, Katy Chrisler, D.G. Geis, & Ronnie K. Stephens.

Yesterday, I re-blogged a post by Rober Okaji:  How to Write a Poem.  The reason I like the poem he posted so much is because it beautifully describes how poetry happens for me as well.  I do just what he says to do:  live and let the words come.    But during March, I picked up my pen.  Every day.

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image: used with permission via Creative Commons by Antonio Litteri0

 

The pen is the difference between simply living a life and living a writer’s life, the pen, the art of listening, and a strange penchant for recording everything!

One of the most interesting things that occurred to me during this writing exercise is that as Naomi Shihab Nye says, poems are everywhereBut you have to be listening.

I didn’t want to “cheat” myself out of the chance to learn this (again!), so I decided that I would wait, each day, for the prompt life would provide.  Life did not disappoint.

 

windshield wiper in the rain cc Kezee

image:  used with permission via Creative Commons photographer, Kezee

Have you ever prayed for rain?

Close to the end of day #24, I still had not written anything, but on my way home from the grocery store, I stopped at the intersection, turning left to go home.  Here is the poem that stop prompted:

 

stopping

 

at the intersection

i nod

 

allow

the cement truck

to cross

 

—huge tumbler

rolling

 

i think      about

ingredients:

 

shells

shale

 

limestone

 

too much

or

too little

 

causes

 

—disintegration

 

~

 

the day       you

announced:

 

i’ve joined the army

 

how i thought

this        might

 

harden      you

 

how it did:

 

pills for rage

pills for sleep

pills for pain

 

~

 

too much

 

for years

 

you wouldn’t

look up

 

your back

to every wall

 

~

 

have you    ever

 

prayed

 

for rain

for a job

 

for a soul

 

      ~

 

today      you call

 

full

overflow

 

of the old      you

the one     i knew

 

mama

 

i want

 to tell you

 

i have     

so many

ideas

 

      ~

 

i think      about

intersections:

 

of faith

of mistakes

 

how i

came to

call you

 

my son

 

by making one

 

~

 

i think      about

 

the time      you

& i         prayed

 

for our lives

 

—perpendicular

roads

 

in front of

the cement plant

 

that day

the tornado

 

turned up

trucks

 

only yards

from us

 

~

 

how we shook

how the deluge

 

(almost) overtook

 

how we bow

 

to a god

neither of us

 

understand

 

d. ellis phelps is the author of Making Room for George, A Love Story (Moon Shadow Sanctuary Press, forthcoming 2016.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lord have mercy. Christ have mercy.

"jesu" 15X11" watercolor on paper unframed, circa 1995.  $150
“jesu” 15X11″ watercolor on paper unframed, circa 1995. $150

Though my spirituality has morphed and evolved into a very broad, multi-faith practice, the mantra-prayer I use most often, especially when I am experiencing fear, is “Lord have mercy.  Christ have mercy.”

In 1995, my mother was diagnosed with uterine cancer and underwent surgery.

As I sat in her apartment, she in the hospital recovering, me waiting for the day I could bring her home, coming back and forth from the hospital, not knowing how much longer she would live or if the surgery was successful.

I came as close as I had until then to recognizing her mortality and my own.

I felt frozen.

I sat at her table, her things all around me, but not her.

I pulled out my paints, these I’d brought with me because from the beginning of my artistic journey, I knew this was how Spirit would speak to me, how I would listen.

Not anticipating any image but just allowing the paint to flow onto the paper, connecting, praying, “Lord have mercy; Christ have mercy” for my mother, for myself, this image emerged.

In that moment, I felt as close to this teacher/healer as I have ever felt, knowing the Essential Energy of his work in the world was fully present to me then, as I know it is now.

Today, I use many other equally powerful mantras and memorized prayers, some from the Christian tradition and some not, but the one element that remains steadfast as essential to my connectedness with the Whole, with Great Spirit is what I now call the christ, the essential truth of being.  Mercy.  Mercy is Lord.  Gentleness.  Care.  Compassion.  Being and living into these qualities day by day.

What prayers sustain you?  Do you use affirmation?

Let us gather here in a community of gentleness, sustaining one another as we enter this season of darkness returning to the Light.

Aho!

book reveiw submission guidelines

Collage Studio Portrait

  • First, let me say, that if you have written a book, you have really done something.  I honor your effort and persistence. Reviewing a book is my way of honoring quality writing that moves me.
  • I review books by independent and traditionally published authors pre or post publication on this blog at no charge and with no obligation to the author.
  • I read non-fiction, memoir, women’s fiction, spirituality, poetry, self-help, and literary or general fiction with an empowered or courageous female protagonist.  Think To Kill a MockingbirdThe Secret Life of Bees, and Care of the Soul (non-fiction).   I will consider non-violent psychological thrillers and paranormal.  I do not read vampire stories, crime drama, romance, erotica or any other writing that denigrates women or promotes violence against them.  I like books that make me think, that make me feel good or cry for happy.  I enjoy strong characterization and vivid detail.  I love books that are not in a hurry.  (Those are rare.)  I love to be taken away, back in time or to foreign lands, especially those that exist outside of physical reality.  I read only a few books a year, so I am very particular about what I choose to read.
  • Send me a link to your book with a “look inside” if it’s published or, if not, send me a  short synopsis via email to dellisphelps@gmail.com requesting a review.  If your book interests me, I’ll let you know within a few days, requesting the entire manuscript.  Feel free to prompt me once after a week or so.  We all get too busy or check out sometimes.
  • Once I have requested your book and if you have an electronic version of your book, you can gift a copy to me via Amazon.  If you have only hard copies of your book, you can send me a copy via snail mail.  I will provide an address when I contact you.
  • Once I have read your book, I will not review it if I cannot give it a four or five star rating and I will notify you if this is true, otherwise, I will send you a link to your review when I have posted it.
  • Click below to read two examples of my reviews:
  • Corvus Rising
  • Just Because You’re Dead Doesn’t Mean You’re Gone

I also provide editorial services for writers for a fee.  Should you require these services, contact me via email and I will send you my list of services.

loose woman:  #art & #life

image: sketch from a couple of days ago in my journal

This loose woman and many others like her have peppered the pages of my journals for years like sirens, luring me into the dangerous waters of artistic transformation.

Some have become manifest in more rigid forms, morphed into spirit guides bringing messages, heralds of truth.

But these images are more abstract, less full of words, more pure imagining, fanciful, and fun!

I wonder:  what would this life, this art look like?  How would it change me..

Can I let go of what I have known, ask the “Little Baptist Girl” shadow to rest, release her Puritainistic, patriarchal  hold on my psyche and let this wild, loose woman have her way with me?

Can I trust that SHE too is holy?  Can I allow Her sensuous vulnerability to pull me into the dark waters of the unknown?

piles, prints, paths: a poem in pictures

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…neither technique nor talent matters half as much as deconditioning the eye from looking-at to seeing.

Frederick Frank

d. ellis phelps is the author of Making Room for George, Balboa Press, 2013.