Dr Niamh On The Plum Tree

Childhood Imagination Sows Seeds of Future Brilliance

Sky-Clad by Sue Lobo…in honour of International Women’s Day.

Dedicated to all women for International Women’s Day.

I am sure that you will all agree that this is a wonderful piece of writing to celebrate the process of ageing. Featuring the work of Sue Lobo who is an extraordinary poet and who should be celebrated for her gift with words. She is not afraid to tell it like it is…Thank you Sue for your brilliance.

woman at mirror

Sky Clad by Sue Lobo:

The passing of passage is marked by many calendar moons, birth dates, entering & exiting the teenage years, engagements, marriage, motherhood etc. I decided to celebrate my coming of age, my entering into crone-hood & it merited a ceremony, my own private getting-to-know-me-as-I am-today-ceremony:

I drew back the curtains of a new dawn; I lit my bees-wax candles, cast my magic circle & dropped my robe. I stood completely sky-clad/naked, feeling dawn´s billowing caress as I searched for the real me in the ancient mirror on the wall.

I looked down at my ageing body, starting at my feet, feet deformed by bunions, crooked toes bent & crippled like an old tree. My eyes moved up my legs which are knotted by thick blue ropes of veins, bulging & throbbing. In between these blue pathways, scattered in array over the bumps of flesh, criss-crossing, red spider veins, mapping the failing secrets of life beneath my skin.

My soft belly protruding south towards my sadness & flaccid transparent breasts following the rest in resigned silence. Sloping shoulders, not as upright as before; before what? Before life happened.

All that my shadowed eyes beheld was encased within a white creased sheet of skin, like that of a newly hatched moth that has never seen the light. My lank grey hair was as colourless as a blind man´s stare & I felt older than life itself:

I pushed away all the age-depressing images, closed my eyes against the woman in the candle-lit mirror & took a deep breath.
I gave myself over to the Goddess, the Gods & the Elements, feeling myself whirling into time´s spinning vortex & all around me & within me, the beautiful choral voices of the singing matriarchs of the ancient tribes of my ancestors, serenading my senses, my womanhood, & the path I was about to enter.

Entering into the realm of the Goddess, I opened my eyes & I felt younger, lighter, stronger & wiser. My eyes sought the flickering mirror once again, but now with the wiser eyes of ancient knowledge.

I now saw my feet as the beautiful gnarled roots of the ancient tree of knowledge & realized that these same feet had carried me through life & the five continents, safely & steadfastly, leading me to where I stood today. The thick knotted veins on my legs converted to the rivers flowing with my life-blood, as precious as the great rivers of this planet, of the African rivers where as a child I had swam deep & content. Those red criss-crossing spider veins vying for importance on my flesh now became the map of path-ways & routes, taking me through my many travels in this life upon earth, some leading to where I had to go, others misleading me, making me retrace my steps, simply so that I may learn a lesson. Dusty pathways through the African deserts I had walked in childhood, but all steps leading to where I stand now.

My round protruding belly, the cauldron that protected my sons, many, many moons ago. My tired breasts, a testimony to the nurturing & comfort bestowed upon babes & men in my long-ago youth of another era, now grateful to be left in slumbering peace. My sloping shoulders, those hills that have carried weighty problems of the past, now slipping & sloping down further into nothing, oblivion, leaving my now-shoulders free & weightless, yet marked by their duty in the past, of continuous support.

My skin, not bronzed by the sun of Greek Gods, nor burnt to cinders from summers past. I now see my skin as a silken mantle, kissed by the beams of many ancient moons, giving it the hue of an open creamy rose, old velvet petals, drooping, ready to fall with a beauty with which no bud can compare. My breeze-billowing hair is now the silver surf of oceans, caressed by millions of moon moths, softly illuminating the nights of life.

I have studied my being from toe to head, getting to know the woman I am today & I am content.

I turn around in my circle three times, feeling the power within. I dedicate my profound & eternal gratitude to the Goddess within me & within all women. I thank her for the beautiful maid I was all those eons, yet seconds ago. I thank her for the loving, nurturing mother I was but yesteryear. I thank her for the lover I was & the men I have loved. I now thank her for the wonderful, wise crone I am at this moment in my life. I don my robe & continue down the corridors of the rest of my life.

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About Dr Niamh

When I was a little girl (a very, very long time ago), I used to love learning new, really big words like ‘discombobulate’. As I grew, my love of words grew too, until I loved them so much, I could not stop writing them down. One day, as I was scribbling a particular word, a very peculiar thing happened. The word shouted at me, “Stop! Don’t put me there!” As you can imagine, I was shocked and nearly fell off my chair. When I recovered somewhat, I said to the word, “Could you stop shouting, please? I am not used to it.” Can you guess what happened next? No! I thought not. The word said, “I might be small, but I will misbehave if you do not use me properly. I will not tell the story you would like me to tell. I will say something entirely different!” I dropped my pen. I hoped that by dropping my pen, the word would stop talking. Alas! It did not. It carried on chitterchobbling, even after the ink had dried. I was in a pickle. I could not allow my words to run away with my story, now could I? I don’t know about you, but when this sort of thing happens, there is only one thing left to do if you prefer not to spend your time arguing. “Very well,” said I. “I will do as you ask if you will just be quiet and allow me to concentrate.” Since that day, I have been paying special attention to every word I invite into my stories. After all, a story should say exactly what it means to say and not be led astray. With love from Dr. Niamh, Ph.D in Learning Through The Imagination and Founder of Dr Niamh Children's Books. www.drniamhchildrensbooks.com

12 comments on “Sky-Clad by Sue Lobo…in honour of International Women’s Day.

  1. kdsomerset
    March 8, 2013

    A wonderful and affirming inspiration. Thank you Sue.

    Like

  2. Sue Lobo
    March 8, 2013

    I FEEL VERY STRONGLY ABOUT AGEING WOMEN IN THIS “BEAUTY BATTLEGROUND” WE LIVE IN & ALSO THOSE WOMEN WHO OPT TO DEDICATE THEIR LIVES TO BEING “JUST” A HOUSEWIFE. WE ARE THE SPINAL COLUMN OF THIS UNIVERSE & SHOULD RECOGNISE OUR CHOICES, STRENGTH & OUR BEAUTY AT ALL STAGES & AGES OF OUR LIFE´S JOURNEY. THERE IS SOMETHING VERY BEAUTIFIL, MYSTICAL & WISE ABOUT AN AGEING WOMAN, ESPECIALLY IF SHE RECOGNISES IT & CELBRATES IT. OTHER FOLK THEN SENSE THAT ESSENCE THAT SURROUNDS HER & TAKE NOTICE, SO LADIES LET´S CELEBRATE WHO WE ARE, FLOPPY BIT AND ALL. BLESSINGS TO ALL OF YOU.X

    Like

  3. the secret keeper
    March 8, 2013

    What a magnificent dedication Niamh Clune, to all women for International Women’s Day. Sue Lobo’s, Sky-Clad is so truthfully open and beautifully written and presents such a representation of women touched by the blessings of the Goddess. To have experienced a full life not yet completed but lived completely felt in and recorded with her vivid language. I enjoyed and was thoroughly absorbed in her honest tale of life’s progressions. Thank you Sue Lobo for your extraordinary recollections from your mirror’s reflections. And Niamh, this was a grand and thoughtful post to celebrate women everywhere. Brava to you both. Namaste. jk Jennifer

    Like

  4. DiAnne Ebejer
    March 8, 2013

    Wow, this had me holding my breath! Just brilliant! Thank you for this wonderful piece Sue and to Niamh for featuring it!

    Like

  5. DiAnne Ebejer
    March 8, 2013

    Reblogged this on DiAnne's Place II and commented:
    A wonderful piece by Sue Lobo On The Plum Tree for International Women’s Day…

    Like

  6. Walking with Beverley
    March 8, 2013

    Simply Brilliant. Simply Magnificent. No sagging in your words. I LOVED This. 😀
    Blessings!

    Like

  7. Patricia Tilton
    March 9, 2013

    Wow, this is beautiful and brilliant! I loved reading this. I always think of this rite of passage as entering our “power years.” We have the wisdom to really make our mark or a difference in the world. Thank you for sharing.

    Like

  8. patriciasands
    March 11, 2013

    Niamh, thank you for sharing this with us. Feeling content with who we are and where we are as we age is the key to a successful last chapter. “I don my robe & continue down the corridors of the rest of my life.” So should we all.

    Like

  9. Sue Lobo
    March 11, 2013

    THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR LOVELY COMMENTS.

    Like

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