Poem: Laughter of the Totally Free

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Laughter of the Totally Free

I want to laugh until my face aches;
I want to laugh until the tears pour down my cheeks;
I want to laugh until my tummy is in agony
And every fibre of my being has experienced sweet release.

I don’t care what anyone else thinks;
I don’t want to be imprisoned by judgement any more.
What others think and feel and experience
Is all of their business and none of mine;
I just want to be free to be whom I was made to be.

I want to laugh until the floor shakes beneath me;
I want to laugh until my tummy can take no more.
I want to laugh the laughter of the totally free
And take whoever seeks freedom on the laughing journey with me.

I don’t care for the prisons of ‘Stiff Upper Lip’ any longer,
I don’t care for the falseness and cheap security.
I don’t care for the discrimination, judgement
And deceptive materialism that people hide behind;
I only care about love and wisdom and being free.

I want to laugh when I wake each morning;
I want to laugh before I fall exhaustedly asleep each beautiful night.
I want to laugh until all around are laughing with me;
I want to laugh out loud and wild and free.

~ : ~

by Holly Maxwell Boydell


[written 12 August 2015]

 

 

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Copyright ©  The Holly Tree Tales
All rights reserved.

Give Up Concern For Man’s Opinion

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Give up
the concern for Man’s opinion.
Seek only to do what brings excellence
and peace
to your own divine relationship
with your Creator
and your Source
of all …
and all else will follow
calmly and simply and beautifully and well.
Love will follow as you fully love,
and all will take place in the correct way
and at the right time,
even
through the trials.
Perfect freedom
is
the result
of
correct
focus.

 

 

 

 

With love,
Holly x

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright ©  The Holly Tree Tales

Poem: Collecting Leaves – Revised Version

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Collecting Leaves

– The revised version –

Golden sunshine captures me as I look into the leaves …
Smells and sights and sounds I feel
As into the depths of golden hues
I allow my spirit to sink and swim and swallow wholeness
From without into within and all around and all beyond me
When all of a sudden the wind whips up and darkness descends into the daylight
Clouds overhead look to me like mighty thunderous promise
While hard drops of icy water hit the surface of the layers on the ground
Sleety icy cold and glorious, windy wet and perfectly sound
I feel the ice begin to enter through my too thin and puny rubber gloves
Knowing soon I shall have to head back inside
But I wish to remain outdoors where I can smell the Autumn and play in her gifts to all mankind
All I want to do is stay outdoors and be warm enough to play …
I look up and see the holly berries ripening on a holly tree
And quickly realise that there lies more promise, more gifts from Nature on this day
Soon I shall gather boughs of berried holly, before the little birds take them all away
And that way we shall have some festive season redness of natural beauty in our home
As we sit in front of log fires, catching up with loved ones who so often are very far away
Playing games and sharing stories, looking at photographs and reminiscing on times we’ve loved
Knowing that every moment is a precious gem, one not to be squandered
But that day soon comes, when we know not when.
And so for now I gather in my harvest of leafy gold dust,
Which when it turns to dust will become my gold
As leaves of many colours and types and sizes become transformed
From rich, papery, vibrant shades of Autumnal tones in every golden hue
Into the rich brown, sweet smelling earth from which they once came …
Once more they are and will become … leafmould.
As we go from dust to dust, so leaves too return to the Earth
From whence we died, we each become new birth.

*

by  Holly Maxwell Boydell

*

[all rights reserved]

~ : ~

 

Author’s Note:
This poem was written at lunchtime on Friday 13 November 2015. It was written in one sitting, in a flow uninterrupted by critical editing and nor does it contain much punctuation.  The original poem included two lines which seemed to fit the mood at the time, but have since been removed.  The poem that was written on 13 November 2015, is included in its entirety in an earlier blog post, published on the day it was created. 

Collecting Leaves ~ A Poem With Little Punctuation

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Gifting myself an hour outdoors in the weak Autumnal sunshine this morning, the intention being to collect what I could, in that time, of the bounty of leaves lying piled up and scattered all around the house and under nearby trees, I savoured every minute of the precious outdoor time. Every bagful would, in only one year, become freely acquired luscious soil, a friable bounty known as “leafmould”.

As I walked back inside afterwards, my fingers frozen to the bone, peeled off my cosy outdoor boots and set my sights back onto working at the computer, I heard a beautiful tune playing on the radio: “Anno Epilogue” by Oliver Davis.  The haunting melody seemed to contain a mirror of the mood I was wafting through. I sat down, with intentions of attending other projects, but instead I wrote this poem.

I hope it will make sense  … there was little punctuation added whilst writing, not wishing to interrupt the flow of the poem writing itself!

~ : ~

[Please continue reading until the Post Script, dated 21 November 2015, at the end of this post. Thank you.]

 

~ : ~

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Collecting Leaves

Golden sunshine captures me as I look into the leaves …
Smells and sights and sounds I feel
As into the depths of golden hues
I allow my spirit to sink and swim and swallow wholeness
From without into within and all around and all beyond me
When all of a sudden the wind whips up and darkness descends into the daylight
Clouds overhead look to me like mighty thunderous promise
While hard drops of icy water hit the surface of the layers on the ground
Sleety icy cold and glorious, windy wet and perfectly sound
I feel the ice begin to enter through my too thin and puny rubber gloves
Knowing soon I shall have to head back inside
But I wish to remain outdoors where I can smell the Autumn and play in her gifts to all mankind
It might be Friday the thirteenth, but superstition is not a worry to me
I am free and I am unencumbered by the fears that grip so many on this day
All I want to do is stay outdoors and be warm enough to play
I look up and see the holly berries ripening on a holly tree
And quickly realise that there lies more promise, more gifts from Nature on this day
Soon I shall gather boughs of berried holly, before the little birds take them all away
And that way we shall have some festive season redness of natural beauty in our home
As we sit in front of log fires, catching up with loved ones who so often are very far away
Playing games and sharing stories, looking at photographs and reminiscing on times we’ve loved
Knowing that every moment is a precious gem, one not to be squandered
But that day soon comes, when we know not when.
And so for now I gather in my harvest of leafy gold dust,
Which when it turns to dust will become my gold
As leaves of many colours and types and sizes become transformed
From rich, papery, vibrant shades of Autumnal tones in every golden hue
Into the rich brown, sweet smelling earth from which they once came …
Once more they are and will become … leafmould.
As we go from dust to dust, so leaves too return to the Earth
From whence we died, we each become new birth.

*

by  Holly Maxwell Boydell

*

[all rights reserved]

~ : ~

 

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Note: If Readers too would like to hear the beautiful tune I heard before penning this poem, and replayed while I collected its stream of words, here is a link that I found to “Anno Epilogue” by Oliver Davis, via YouTube : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-71KIvYOKLk

 

~ : ~

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Blessings,

Holly x

 


POST SCRIPT

Saturday 21 November 2015

I wrote the poem “Collecting Leaves” at lunchtime last Friday, 13 November 2015, and posted it onto The Holly Tree Tales that afternoon.  Little did any of us know that, later that day, the most atrocious tragedy would hit Europe, matched only by some of the atrocities being carried out in other parts of the world too.  Two lines in the poem have been haunting me all this week:

“It might be Friday the thirteenth, but superstition is not a worry to me
I am free and I am unencumbered by the fears that grip so many on this day”

At the time of writing, those words seemed relevant to the ambience and experience on the day, but in hindsight they appear truly crass – which is not and was not, by any means, intended. Out of respect to all those who were hurt on that day, in untold and known ways in Europe and around the world, and to all those who are still hurting in the aftermath of the atrocities,  I have since removed those two troubling lines.  There is now a revised version of this poem, which appears later in the blog, republished and with more punctuation inserted.

In mindful consideration, I continue to hope for peace to come into all of our lives.

~ Holly Maxwell Boydell

The poem “IF”, by Rudyard Kipling

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IF

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings – nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man, my son.

 

~ by Rudyard Kipling

 ~ : ~

 

Note:
“IF” was written by British Nobel laureate Rudyard Kipling in 1895, and first published in Rewards and Fairies in 1910.

Joseph Rudyard Kipling was a short-story writer, poet, and novelist.
Born 30 December 1865 in Mumbai, India –  died 18 January 1936 in London.

May You Always Feel Loved – A Poem By Sandra Sturtz Hauss

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I came across this beautiful poem today. It touched me and I thought it would quite possibly touch others too. I share it here, for all of us …

 

MAY YOU ALWAYS FEEL LOVED

May you find serenity and tranquility
in a world you may not always understand.

May the pain you have known
and the conflict you have experienced
give you the strength to walk through life
facing each new situation with courage and optimism.

Always know that there are those
whose love and understanding will always be there,
even when you feel most alone.

May a kind word,
a reassuring touch,
and a warm smile
be yours every day of your life,
and may you give these gifts
as well as receive them.

May the teachings of those you admire
become part of you,
so that you may call upon them.

Remember, those whose lives you have touched
and who have touched yours
are always a part of you,
even if the encounters were less than you would have wished.
It is the content of the encounter
that is more important than its form.

May you not become too concerned with material matters,
but instead place immeasurable value
on the goodness in your heart.
Find time in each day to see beauty and love
in the world around you.

Realize that what you feel you lack in one regard
you may be more than compensated for in another.
What you feel you lack in the present
may become one of your strengths in the future.
May you see your future as one filled with promise and possibility.
Learn to view everything as a worthwhile experience.

May you find enough inner strength
to determine your own worth by yourself,
and not be dependent
on another’s judgment of your accomplishments.

May you always feel loved.

*

By Sandra Sturtz Hauss © 1987

~ : ~

 

The rose pictured is “A Shropshire Lad”, by David Austin Roses. It grows against the wall, near to where I work on my computer and has the most wonderful blooms, with a fresh and fruity scent. Its foliage is gorgeously dark and healthy, starting off almost burgundy and maturing into a deep, dark glossy green. It is a picture of health and hopefulness, both as it comes into leaf and when it is in full growth in Summer.

 Holly x

Judging And Loving

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Judging And Loving

Don’t judge that which you cannot understand,
For only fools do that.
Don’t judge the one whose shoes you’ve not walked in,
Unless you know that you could walk his path.
Don’t judge others,
For while you point one finger, three are pointing back at you.
Don’t sit around chewing over the life of another,
While your own life’s clock is ticking past.
Don’t use your head to judge a situation,
When your heart could do it better for you.
Don’t judge what you cannot feel,
For in the process you might condemn the one who can.
Don’t judge unless you have the right to,
Knowing that things of the soul do not stand up in a court of law.
Don’t judge that which you have no control over,
For in the process you might imprison yourself.
Don’t judge the ones who have been placed in your life,
For they might well be there to teach and love you.
Don’t cripple the ones who give you unconditional love,
Their love might be the best you will ever receive.
Not judging is a karmic equation,
Which stands fully spoken and written at length about in the Bible too.
Instead of judging, try loving
And then stand back and watch how much love flows back towards you.

 

 

~ : ~

 

 

Holly x

 

 

 

© Holly Maxwell Boydell
All rights reserved.

 

 

 

Ek Wil Huis Toe Gaan – An Ode to South Africa – With Translation

A Power of Prosperity moment.

A Kwa-Zulu Natal house martin, resting on a telephone wire at the Author’s home in Berwickshire, UK.

In my previous blogpost, I explained the writing of this poem, which seemed to write itself one chilly evening in Britain, during October 2013. I have now cobbled together a translation, which appears below the original, for those who do not speak Afrikaans nor know the South African lingo …

Ek Wil Huis Toe Gaan

Ek wil huis toe gaan …
Weg van hierdie koue plek;
Weg van hier, waar die mense kan nie lag nie;
Weg van die grys en die vreeslike ys,
Daar waar die hemel dikwels blou is;
Waar die mense lag en speel,
Waar die vriende warm is,
En die blommetjies baie is;
Waar die dikdikke dik,
En die blomme lekker ruik;
Waar die koppies loer my in,
En die pad lekker warm onder die fiets is;
Waar die biltong smaak,
En die boerewors kraak;
Waar die sonskyn soos parfum op my vel voel,
En die wind so lieflik oor die veldt grassies ‘skyn’ …
Ja, ek wil huis toe gaan.
Ek moet huis toe gaan.
Ek kan nie langer wag nie,
Ek moet huis toe gaan.
Die pyn is soms vreeslik koud.
Ek moet huis toe gaan,
Voor alles is vergeet en ek is baie oud.
Draai my huis toe nou,
Op die wind en die voel se rug,
Nou, asseblief, gee my ‘n bietjie verlig,
Ek wil huis toe gaan.

Asseblief. Net huis toe. Nou.

~ : ~

 

And in English, a rough translation …


I Want To Go
Home

I want to go home …
Away from this cold place;
Away from here, where the people cannot laugh;
Away from the grey and the terrible ice,
There where the sky is often blue;
Where the people laugh and play,
Where the friends are warm,
And the flowers are many;
Where the dik-dik call,
And the flowers smell divine;
Where the little hills entice me,
And the road is hot under the bicycle;
Where the “biltong” tastes delicious,
And the “boerewors” crackles;
Where the sunshine feels like perfume on my skin,
And the wind shines so beautifully over the “veld” grasses …
Yes, I want to go home.
I cannot wait any longer,
I must go home.
The pain is sometimes freezing cold.
I must go home,
Before everything is forgotten and I am very old.
Draw me homewards now,
On the wind and the back of the bird,
Now, please, give me a little relief,
I want to go home.

Please. Just home. Now.

~ : ~


Explanation of Words used

Boerewors :  a spicy South African sausage.
Biltong : a dried meat, often spiced with coriander seed.
Dik-dik : a very small type of antelope, named for the sound  that they make.
Veld or Veldt : the wide open spaces of natural African grasslands / meadows.
Verlig : literally translates as someone who holds progressive or enlightened views, in this poem used with liberty to describe a sense of relief, lightheartedness, or respite from continual care or burden.

Holly x

The original poem, written in Afrikaans on 26 October 2013.
Translation on12 August 2015.
~ by Holly Maxwell Boydell

An Ode to South Africa

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The Author amongst plants on a family journey between Kwa-Zulu Natal and the Cape, stopping somewhere en route, possibly Namaqualand … A child adoring the exquisite floral beauty, simply growing wild and free all around her. Circa 1973.


Written in moments, straight onto my Facebook page one homesick evening …
The ‘poem’ below wrote itself, it took no time at all to release … I walked up to my computer, sat down at the keyboard, and just let the words flow, as tears streamed from my eyes. I did not edit it, simply hit return and ‘published’, once the flow of words had ceased.

Strangely, there had been many years in between my leaving South Africa in December 1985 and sitting down to let this poem ‘escape’ on the evening of Saturday 26 October 2013. The strangest thing of all was that, for many years, I had completely forgotten every word of the second language of my country of birth, a language that was never ever used in my ‘very British’ home. Somewhere deep in my subconscious, however, the longing thrashed about and translated itself into the language of the land that I longed for.

At the time of writing, as now, I did not know whether the words made any grammatical sense whatsoever … yet somehow my teenage son, who speaks not a word of Afrikaans, picked up the emotion and the significance of this poem. I think the trauma of leaving, readjusting, and the difficulties encountered in a new country, not once but thrice since 1985, caused my subconscious to block much that I had taken for granted before. 

Is it a poem, I wonder? It certainly is a work that came from (or beyond) my deepest self, all of its own accord. Mine were merely the hands that typed it …

~ : ~


Ek Wil Huis Toe Gaan

Ek wil huis toe gaan …
Weg van hierdie koue plek;
Weg van hier, waar die mense kan nie lag nie;
Weg van die grys en die vreeslike ys,
Daar waar die hemel dikwels blou is;
Waar die mense lag en speel,
Waar die vriende warm is,
En die blommetjies baie is;
Waar die dikdikke dik,
En die blomme lekker ruik;
Waar die koppies loer my in,
En die pad lekker warm onder die fiets is;
Waar die biltong smaak,
En die boerewors kraak;
Waar die sonskyn soos parfum op my vel voel,
En die wind so lieflik oor die veldt grassies ‘skyn’ …
Ja, ek wil huis toe gaan.
Ek moet huis toe gaan.
Ek kan nie langer wag nie,
Ek moet huis toe gaan.
Die pyn is soms vreeslik koud.
Ek moet huis toe gaan,
Voor alles is vergeet en ek is baie oud.
Draai my huis toe nou,
Op die wind en die voel se rug,
Nou, asseblief, gee my ‘n bietjie verlig,
Ek wil huis toe gaan.

Asseblief. Net huis toe. Nou.

~ : ~


End note: Two years hence, I think I have remembered sufficient Afrikaans and South African ‘lingo’ in order to be able to vaguely translate this piece.

I have not travelled home to South Africa since 2007, and only twice briefly before that. This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of my leaving South Africa, very reluctantly, during incredibly unsettled times in that beautiful country, still struggling to find its peace.

Holly x

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Ifafa Beach, on the South coast of Kwa-Zulu Natal, during the 1960s. A place very dear to my heart, much-visited and very much loved as a young child. A place I long to visit, often.

 

She Let Go – A Poem by Safire Rose

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In the past few weeks, I have seen several writings and little signs about the importance of letting go. For many of us, this is incredibly hard to do but, when things build up to a crescendo, we realise that we really have to release what is holding us back from peace.

I have had my own personal struggles with letting go on many fronts, and have found that one of the hardest things to judiciously let go of is possessions, a physical manifestation of what has gone on deep in my soul. I know that this pain stems from early childhood trauma, and subsequent shocks along the way, as multiple occasions arose when I had to simply move on to the next experience, with little beneath me to hold on to or to help carry me through. I have had to say goodbye too many times, to too many people, friendships, loving environments, physical things, places and types of ‘security’ that have come into my life for a time, and then departed. As a result of many of these experiences, even though I have been aware from an early age that personal growth was involved, they have left scars and these scars now define me. It is hard to move beyond what defines us, but we need to release what weighs heavily on our shoulders, in order to be free, as free as we ever can be.

When I came upon this poem recently, it seemed to fall into my life as a golden leaf of hope, and also a resolution to do what I could to be free of what was causing me pain, particularly my thoughts of loss on that day. Seeing other mentions of the term ‘letting go’, here and there since, I felt that the universe was trying to guide me, to hold me up and to help me to gently, quietly and calmly release my frightened, determined grip, and let some of those burdens go. When a child has had what matters most ripped away from them, time after time, and then experiences this into adulthood, despite maturity and wisdom in many other areas, the agony of loss becomes as nothing compared to the ache of confusion about what to keep and what to let go.

This poem spoke so deeply to my soul, as I have said, and then as if by chance I happened upon a beautiful recording of it, read by the actress Kim Wade, on YouTube. Just as the original poem’s sighting had done, this recording seemed to fall into my life as a gift. I have listened to Kim’s calm and eloquent voice reading the poem, over and over again since, and have found not only solace in the listening, but also gentle renewal of resolve to free myself as much as I can, from all that is holding me back from living my own best life.

I hope that the poem, written by Reverend Safire Rose (of Agape Ministry), will touch a place deep within you as well, and will have come into your life at a time when you might need it most. If you listen to Kim Wade peacefully reading this poem, I am sure it will be beneficial too, as a meditation exercise, or to calm, or to simply inspire, and I hope that it will bless you as much, or even more than it has blessed me.

 

******************************


She Let Go

She let go. Without a thought or a word, she let go.

 She let go of fear. She let go of the judgments.

 She let go of the confluence of opinions swarming around her head.

 She let go of the committee of indecision within her.

 She let go of all the ‘right’ reasons. Wholly and completely,

 without hesitation or worry, she just let go.

 She didn’t ask anyone for advice. She didn’t read a

 book on how to let go. She didn’t search the scriptures.

 She just let go.

 She let go of all of the memories that held her back.

 She let go of all of the anxiety that kept her from moving forward.

 She let go of the planning and all of the calculations about how to do it just right.

 She didn’t promise to let go.

 She didn’t journal about it.

 She didn’t write the projected date in her day-timer.

 She made no public announcement and put no ad in the paper.

 She didn’t check the weather report or read her daily horoscope.

 She just let go.

 She didn’t analyse whether she should let go.

 She didn’t call her friends to discuss the matter.

 She didn’t do a five-step Spiritual Mind Treatment.

 She didn’t call the prayer line.

 She didn’t utter one word. She just let go.

 No one was around when it happened.

 There was no applause or congratulations.

 No one thanked her or praised her.

 No one noticed a thing.

 Like a leaf falling from a tree, she just let go.

 There was no effort.

There was no struggle.

 It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad.

 It was what it was, and it is just that.

 In the space of letting go, she let it all be.

 A small smile came over her face.

 A light breeze blew through her.

 And the Sun and the Moon shone forevermore.

~ Safire Rose

*************************

The poem, read beautifully by Kim Wade (of Inner Gaze Yoga), is available to listen to via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FiFXJC1wIkc

Love and light,

Holly x