Winter to Spring, and the House Guest from Hell….

Well, I’ve been coasting this winter, mostly doing research, reading whatever I can grab that either fulfills the self-imposed requirements of ‘research’ or whatever comforts, satisfies.  This last varies, but I keep coming back to the soothing nature of Japanese classical literature.  Tanka, waka, biographies with work attached of Ono no Komachi, Saigyo, Basho, and the works of Royall Tyler (“Japanese Tales”, which are ‘fairy tales’ of a folk, horror nature), another attempt to settle down and plow seriously into Ruth Benedict’s “The Chrysanthemum and the Sword” (a dated but weighty book on the Japanese written during WWII from her anthropological studies and interviews of interned Japanese in the US), Morris Berman’s “Coming to Our Senses” (and excellent and too far ranging book), and most recently,  Albert Hourani’s “A History Of The Arab Peoples”, which was started recently for more research for “Tin Hinan”, but is actually so well written it’s something I climb into bed for comfort at the end of the day.

This past week I’ve needed comfort, or perhaps a realization that some ‘friendships’ are not what you need in life: or perhaps I need some ‘smudging’, a clean broom or something to dispel negative energy left by a short-lived houseguest. Although we had little winter, I am ready for spring and all the changes to come.

When she was finally gone, (after changing plans repeatedly) it was a great relief.  But the negative energy she left behind was ‘real’.  I felt the house needed to be purged.  It was that bad.  So I opened windows, vacuumed, moved furniture around (the ‘go to’ when I need a change in environment or am bored….) and then on the suggestion of a dear friend, burned some candles and tried a little ritual of “bad be gone”.

It was a process that took all week, and I kept finding different and annoying remains of her around the house, like her cast off toothbrush left on the tub rim.  I kept throwing things out. In case I sound intolerant, yes I am. Guilty as charged.  It’s been a halting process, but it has rewards.  I should have developed this ‘aspect’ of my personality a while ago.  I think women in general tolerate too much in life: stupid, insulting, demeaning people because they are relatives or because we have assumed the position so long that we don’t realize the nature of things. We are numb to insults thrown out by hurtful people.  Either we can’t believe our ears or we don’t want to ‘rush to judgment’.  Hah! That kind of  behavior only emboldens these kind of people because they are insensitive to what they do…most times.  If they do it on purpose, they generally fall on the side of sadism and nobody really likes a sadist.

Perhaps we finally find our place in the sun.  I know  it took a long time for me to do so.  I am  considered accomplished enough,  but it took years  to ‘own’ those accomplishments.  Perhaps that has something to do with my intolerance now.  I refuse to have fools and ignorant people around me. I refuse to accomadate them, and if I lose ‘friends’ …well, so what.

I have a 99 year old Aunt  I call “Mother”, and she calls me “Daughter”.  It has taken many years for this to happen, but we both know that there isn’t much time left on the earth to acknowledge our deep love and respect for the other. She has told me many things that makes sense of my family life, and I have told her many things of great concern.  I love her deeply, and find that her love, instead of having to reach for it….reaches down to me. She is not only a cherished relative, but she is a friend.  I know that this can’t be forever, but I write to her every week, and call her, too, and she does the same.  I just wish, and I say this with tears, that I had done so earlier in my life.  She gives me love  I have never understood because it is constant and it is unconditional. 

 My aunt is a regal and elegant woman.  She  knows her place in the sun, but she does have regrets. I know she teaches me many things, and her age is no barrier in this. Perhaps tolerating people who ‘grate’ on the mind is one of them.  It’s not just good health that gets you to 99.  Perhaps it’s something else.  Perhaps it’s called grace.

Lady Nyo

(I love it when a reader, in this case, a fine poet, Yousei Hime, suggests an illustration to go with a poem.  I went to Google one, and my own painting was in the Google Image pile…LOL!  And it was under the caption: “Pitcher of Moon”.  Now, it’s not really a moon picture, but it is late dusk, and the sky is reflected in the pond…but what are the chances that this painting would pop up under that caption?  Thank you, Yousei Hime, for suggesting an illustration.  Good thing I had something to post that I didn’t have to steal!)

Pitcher of Moon

  

I dip into the pond

And gather a pitcher of moon.

Above it glimmers,

Smiles at my efforts

This late-winter moon.

 

It is just a bowl of cool water

I am holding

But the magic of the cosmos settles

In this plain clay vessel.

 

Janekohutbartels,

Copyrighted, 2012

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10 Responses to “Winter to Spring, and the House Guest from Hell….”

  1. Yousei Hime Says:

    Love the prose and haven’t a word for how much I like the poem. This is one I’d really like to read again and again. Needs a beautiful illustration to partner it, something simple that lets the poem shine through.

  2. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Sweetie!

    First, thanks for reading and your lovely, lovely comment. I almost deleted the entire top because it was so….well…negative. But I have reason to feel annoyed…LOL! That toothbrush was the last straw, and a phone call I had missed….but! I have a dear friend who moved away years ago and does energy work…and is going to apply her talents an abilities to dispel the rest of the remaining bad juju. LOL!

    I still haven’t dumped the garbage she filled my bathroom can with…I just don’t want to look and be reminded of that last weekend. LOL! But I better get it out of the house. I didn’t think these things would bother me so much, but they did. They represented, she represented a time where I would have just kept my mouth shut and taken her manipulation….but I didn’t…not really….I set some boundaries and she really didn’t like it. That gave me a clue as to what her real nature was…but then again….she was pretty depressed. She had been basically homeless for the past 6 months, living with others and “being treated like a slave” (her words) in exchange for staying in various places. But I think generally, she doesn’t make good choices in her life anyway. And this is always hard to hear and see the results. But I also know that these disruptions in your own life have consequences….she reminded me of someone very abusive in my birth family….her attempts to manipulate. At least I could break any ties with her, but with family it’s harder. Much harder.

    I am so glad you like he poem. This just came so suddenly, without a struggle…a couple of weeks ago..and frankly, I posted it in a short blog entry, and you and only one other person even saw it at the bottom of the pile. LOL!

    I figured you would like it if you read it, because of the Japanese simplicity and flavor. I think these ‘kind’ of poems are my favorite…and moving closer to them gives me a sense of stability and satisfaction. I was reading a very long introduction to the Man’yoshu last night, and realized how much emotionally I was pulled by these poems….they look on the surface so simple, but they are culturally deep.

    Thank you again, Yousei Hime…for reading and your commment.

    Lady Nyo

  3. Yousei Hime Says:

    I’m sorry to hear about the company. I know what you mean about negative energy. My place is crawling with it, rather like cockroaches. I haven’t had much umph to tackle it, but now that the sun and temps are warmer, that’s going to change.

    How serendipitous to find your own painting. It’s lovely too. It reminds me of something my mother-in-law has that I have always admired, with just enough color to warm it up endearingly.

    I suspect your reading has flavored your writing a bit. I’m certain that my reading has tainted my preferences. ;) Enjoy the arrival of spring.

  4. ladynyo Says:

    I’m sorry to hear that your own place…crawling with negative energy…and you are exactly right! It’s like cockroaches! LOL!

    I spent the entire week bemoaning this crap….and of course, this woman, this former house guest, is on her way without a thought to her behavior here. I am very thankful for people who understand and also for a friend who is doing long distance energy work to dispel this negative energy here…I don’t know what that is all about, but I am very thankful for it.

    I think it’s this…on the homefront: we have to set boundaries in our lives….and other people’s negative behavior is not benign at all…it affects our own thoughts, bodies and environment. It is pernicious when we don’t recognize it, and ban it. Well, in this case, it’s in the form of a person, but it also can be in the forms of neighbors (hear, hear!), strangers, and con men/women. LOL!

    This last is also a chore. Recently, we met a pastor who was questionable after a more intense look/see…even though our own ‘theology’ seemed to be akin to his. In the end? He, we believe, because of what he has done….is just another con man without a collar. Perhaps we are getting our radar up!

    Thank you about the painting…I really want to spend some time this spring to take up my painting again….I have to because of the cover of “Tin Hinan” and also I want to, in the form of sumi-e painting….for “The Nightingale’s Song”. This last technique will be a learning issue.

    (I hope this goes through…kitten just unplugged a cable….the little devil!)

    Of COURSE our reading taints our writing and our preferences! And we both have picked some good influences in my estimation. LOL!

    Put up those psychic (and sometimes physical) barriers, sweetie! Your life will be so much easier, calmer…and you won’t steam for a whole week on your blog about it!

    Hugs,

    Lady Nyo

  5. brian miller Says:

    it is def a lovely poem…and i love the painting too it goes well and accentuates your verse…

    i know the feeling on the house guest and the energy they leave behind…glad you survived that…and look forward to the next part of your tale….

  6. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Brian!
    Boy, did I bitch all week. LOL! But she’s gone, gone, gone. Most of the negative energy is being dispelled, and fresh flowers in the house help with this. We can, and must survive these things, but boy do they put us in a tizzy! I am finding that these things are pretty universal….

    I’m going to post “Pitcher of Moon” for dversepoets.com on Tuesday. I posted it before, but only one person even saw it, and it’s new and I think it needs another airing.

    I’ll post the entire Chapter II of “Tin Hinan” Thursday…and thank you, Brian for reading it. I think you will like it. I reread it, and the high emotions of this tale brought me to tears!

    LOL!

    Jane

  7. Liras Says:

    As usual, as deliciouslylovely post, Lady N!

    Good of ou to help. Good that she has left!

    Hoping to remind you that it is ok to set rules for houseguests and nip them in the bud when thry start to grow spikes!

  8. ladynyo Says:

    Lol! Liras….this woman came with spikes. I almost pushed her out of my car (going at a slow trot…) when she wouldn’t stop her screaming about her brother….the brother who bought most of her camping stuff.

    A spoiled, self-entitled brat. But I wish her well….from a longgggg distance.

    Lady Nyo

  9. Liras Says:

    Long distance is such a great thing!

  10. ladynyo Says:

    Until it becomes too close for comfort.

    Lady Nyo

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