Hello fellow Earthlings
It’s the 13th of June – two days before I set off on tour again, and only 2 weeks since I returned from the last one. I feel I haven’t quite recovered yet from a very complex, exciting, and at times challenging six week journey that began in New Orleans, too me via Amtrack to Jackson Mississipi, flew me over the great wide continent of North America – then onward over the Pacific Ocean to Melbourne, returning me to Santa Fe via a convoluted detour back to the East Coast of the USA to attend the wonderful Rites of Spring Gathering in the Springtime-green forests of Western Massachusetts. A true highlight of my Massachusetts visit was my 8-hour hike with friends along the beautiful Appalachian Trail.
But sadly, despite all the wonderful times and beautiful people that I spent time with on this trip, I still found myself in a pit of physical and emotional exhaustion when I did finally return home. And the exhaustion – as it so often can – led to a very rapid and scary and painful descent into the Underworld of depression and anxiety. Of course, it’s little wonder that I should provide myself with the opportunity to visit the emotional landscape of the Underworld again, considering that the bulk of this tour was spent in the studio, adding the final touches to my epic ‘Persephone’ album. It’s the story of descent and rebirth, of transmuting pain into wisdom and growth, of willingly eating the seeds of transformation.
I love this myth, and I love what I’ve created based on it, but sheesh, this project really is demanding every single ounce of my energy, my focus, my creativity. I’m so grateful that I gave up drinking alcohol 9 months ago, as the mixture of long studio hours, long flights, lots and lots of gigs, family commitments, Full Moon Magic concerts etc etc is very taxing on my body and I’m doing my best to stay in tip-top shape so that I can really give it my all.
But hey, somewhere in there I fucked up – just too much work, not enough sleep, and despite my best intentions found myself in that scarily familiar ball of tears and anguish. It’s been a couple of years since I’ve really gone through such a descent. It was exhausting and I felt utterly stripped from a couple of days of cathartic tears. Now I feel I could just sleep for months, hibernate in a cave somewhere, dream my way through the long, hot New Mexico Summer.
But it’s not to be. And that’s fine. I love my life. I love the touring and the adventure and the opportunity to spend time with the many excellent friends across the globe who I always hold in my heart. But I keep wondering if there is just some other little thing I can do, chip away at the marble, refine and improve myself a bit more so that I can continue to live this wild and wonderful Life? And then I remember a layer deeper, that of course there are highs and lows, and that, of course, I should cut myself some slack as I’m nearing the tail end of a 12 year project! Maybe I needed one more journey down into Hades realm to refresh my empathic connection with Persephone and her mother Demeter, and through them my empathic connection with the suffering of all people. The Persephone myth is such a deep exploration of the shared human experience of loss, of grief, of despair.
I spent the bulk of the tour in the Autumnal realms of a sacred Samhain in Australia – that beautifully deep and important point on our Wheel of the Year, when the veils between this world and that, between the living and the dead, become thin and mutable. Clearly, I carried that energy back with me to the Springtime lands of the USA! (In fact, a bit illegally, I did actually bring a gorgeous pomegranate back from Australia so that I could use it in the photoshoot for Persephone. I knew I couldn’t find one quite so beautiful in the Springtime of Massachusetts! So, I ate those bloody seeds quite literally, and down I went. What did I expect! I think I set myself up 🙂 . (Here’s a rough edit of one of the shots from the photoshoot- not a front cover shot, as that will be a gorgeous painting of a Pomegranate, but maybe a possible option for inside artwork??)
So what did I learn, then, from this recent trip to the Underworld? I do know that if we’re willing to be present with the process, then the Underworld offers jewells of great beauty. Here’s a few:
- Be kind and gentle to myself
- Mythology is living and real, and leads us where we need to go
- All work and no play makes Wendy a bit of a mess
- Creating a work of art is an all-encompassing process
- Sleep more, think less
- Slow down
- Turn the ‘high achievement’ dial back to, maybe, 11 instead of a gazillion
- Smuggling fruit across international borders is a dangerous business!
Persephone will be released on October 31st this year ( my 52nd birthday, and of course Samhain in the Northern Hemisphere). If you’re on my mailing list (which you can join at the bottom of this page) then I can keep you updated with the process and let you know when pre-sales become available.
Ok, now I’m going to start packing for what I know will be a fun and joyful and prosperous 2 weeks on the road, to Minnesota, Wisconsin, Delaware, Pensylvania and New York. There’s a really good chance, if I heed my lessons, that next month’s blog will be a very happy one.
Love and Magic, and thanks so much to all of you who sent emotional support my way when I really, really needed it.