Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I always wanted to be a drummer

Last weekend I got the chance to go to a drum circle in Fallbrook CA. It happened at the end of a VERY rainy week where we got six inches of rain in five days....really a whole year's worth of rain in a normal year. It was such a blessing to gather with a circle of people and play, chant, shake, rattle and roll.

I wanted to be a drummer since fifth grade, where I ended up playing french horn instead. I drummed a bit in women's spiritual rituals in the early 1980's...satisfying, but then life moved on (and a child stuck a stick through my drum that I was letting him play with.)

For the past 4 years I have had the previlege of playing in a drum and storytelling circle at Radys Children's Hospital as part of the Healing Arts Department. We play with the children and families of kids in the hospital. It is always a blessing, and sometimes AMAZING.

God bless the drum, the drumming and the drummers of the world.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Getting back to writing

Last week I was going through one of the mountains of boxes in our garage...New Years is a great time for sorting out, clearing out. I found, among LOTS of things that can be recycled, files of old stories, essays and poems that I have written over the years...including the first "real" poem that I remember writing as a 16 year old. Some of the stuff is really bad, trashy even, but some is pretty darned good (if I do say so myself).

So it may be time to drag it back out and share some of them with the world. Here is one of my favorites:


18 three- and four-year olds

practiced with chopsticks today.

Poking, prodding, puzzling

over the mysterious sticks

used by a billion people

yet new to these little ones.

Can we build a bridge across the gulfs

that divide us

with picture books and chopsticks and

snacks with strange names, but taste good?

I cannot negotiate for peace among nations

or put a stop to war

but I can offer children

the chance to know

there are oh so many ways to live

and speak and love

and eat.

Chopsticks for peace.

Patti Christensen