Mike and I were standing, facing each other, not talking, but just being with each other. Drops of rain began to fall, slowly at first, and then building in a gentle rain. We moved closer, so that we were embracing. The rain became a heavy downpour, and then a deluge. I looked up over my right shoulder, and saw that the rain was no longer rain, but a waterfall. As I stood with my feet in the pool of water, I felt the firmness of the rock underneath my feet. They did not feel slippery to me, and I felt secure as the water poured over the two of us, washing over our now naked bodies, and circled around our legs before filling the deepening pool. I looked at Mike and then looked to the source of the water again. The rocks surrounding the waterfall had taken on the form of S(h)iva, and the waterfall, now the sacred Ganges came from the top of his head.

And so I knew.

There are dreams, and there are visions and teaching dreams. Dreams are the playground of the subconscious; teaching dreams give lessons and show ways that things can be done. Visions are clear images of what is, and what is to be. With this vision-dream and its rich symbolism of our being washed clean in the sacred water of the Ganges, a blessing from the manifestation of the Divine Shiva, that represents transformation and regeneration, I knew that we would be together. Shiva (Sanskrit: Śiva), the god of the arts and yoga, was married to Parvati, the gentle aspect of Shakti the feminine counterpart of Shiva, the maternal form of the Divine. Shakti is primordial cosmic energy, representing the dynamic forces that move through the universe. Shiva and Shakti cannot fulfill themselves without each other.

Mike and I were married in the spring of 1977 and we divorced in 1992. There are memories, and there are painted illusions that we think are memories. Memories of where we lived and when, what cars we drove, what jobs we had, are solid and can be remembered with certainty. The illusionary clouds of emotion that surround the memories are bits of energy that are lost to time. During that time, there were things that happened to me that are important to my spiritual growth, and to my becoming a mother (1986). This is where the threads weave, not in the story of the illusion. And, these are the things that I will write about.

As I read my old journals, the cyclical nature of the relationship that Mike and I had is clear. It did not matter how tenaciously I clung to its spiritual beginning and the commitment that I had made; the bond was based in dysfunction and nothing could make it healthy and flourish. It was this realization that inspired the following poem in 1990.

Mendocino. Always a place for renewal
art and ocean song
peacefulness in the mist and fog
and the air of salt and romance

My intent is the constant rhythm of the ocean
His fears are the wind-beaten cliffs

I move through the garden
roses and Bougainvillea draping the redwood fence
so many hopes held by earthy support

Flowers past their prime
hinges rusted by weather and wear
memories of beauty captured in the petals
strewn in the dirt

Standing in the dawn of Autumn
I long for Spring
a time gone by
full of bright colors and new beginnings

In my mourning
I seek the renewal
of time long gone

A last look at the garden
my hope, like the petals,
wind-scattered across the earth