Three weeks on, it is still hard to find the words. Since I returned home from SAW
it has felt as tho’ a veil was drawn between my days there and my everyday. But I want to try to express just a bit of the peaceful, powerful, beautiful experience I had there.

Travel gave me the gift of opening of my eyes to the beauty beyond my usual small world….on a city-scale in seeing New York from the train…

…and on a domestic scale with my dear friend’s doorstep in Maine.

Squam itself gave me the gift of quiet and reflection in the blue serenity of its waters and the green rocky embraces of its woods….

…and the gift of warmth and conversation and connection I found in the women there who so quickly became a sisterhood to me.

Tara….. Jinny ….. Heather….. me….. my dear roomate Kerri
me…..sweet Jinny, again….. Cat Allard…..Linda

The workshops gave me the gift of delight in my painty fingers…

…and the beginnings of working through my doubts and hesitancy about making art.

The lively and lovely programs in the evenings gave me the gift of encouragement and community and laughter. One endearing speaker was Kelly Rae, and her book is patiently waiting for me to find a space in my home and space in my days to play and learn and spread my wings.

After the retreat, I was given another beautiful gift when my sweet friend Kim took me to Maine and the coast near Two Lights. I spent a precious hour by myself in a little cove, gathering shells, gazing into tidal pools, dashing out of the reach of the wild waves and felt as I haven’t felt since my time in England and Wales more than twenty years ago. Completely filled up-body and soul.


I never did finish Gift from the Sea, by Anne Morrow Lindbergh….but when I returned home from the sea and Squam, I realized that I had gleaned enough from it-for now. By taking the brave step into the unknown and finding acceptance and joy and sustenance there, I returned home spilling over with love….and tho’ I haven’t been able to “hold” all that I felt there, in my hands here…its gifts are mine.

It is hard to read, but this necklace says “begin” and has a lovely copper feather on top of a brass oval. Another oval necklace! For me who only bought my first necklace in May, it was a happy coincidence to find it. And I love to wear it now to remind myself that I do, indeed, have wings whenever I choose to use them.

“Be as a bird perched on a frail branch that she feels bending beneath her, still she sings away all the same, knowing she has wings.”
Victor Hugo

P.S. And thank you to the wondrous Elizabeth for making this “Brigadoon” that I hope to return to each September when it appears out of the mist!