Tag: Sunrise

Maidin ag Dún Aonghusa

Maidin ag Dún Aonghusa

For several days, sunrise at the fort was my goal but I never seemed to be up before the dawn. My goal was to walk up in darkness–for some reason that walk in the cover of night was incredibly special–and photograph the fort before daylight.

Finally, some wild force awakened me and I gathered my photography gear, warm layers and boots and quietly exited the guest house. As soon as I opened the front door the wind grabbed my hair. It was crazy again which would make the walk up in darkness even more exciting.

As I entered the prehistoric fort, built over 3000 years ago, the wind once again grabbed me and I stumbled forward into the first circle. I grounded myself and walked over a field of rocks and climbed again to the upper level of the fort.

The night before I sat on a huge slab of rock close to the edge. On that morning, I stayed far away from the edge due to the swirling winds moving through the fort. In fact, I could hardly stand at the same place where just hours before the wind kissed my face in sweet caresses.

With my backpack secured and the tripod in one hand, I stood in darkness facing the sea and with a strong voice repeated the invocation I do every morning. As I begin to speak, the wind completely stopped.

I rise with the strength of Heaven. Light of the sun. Radiance of the moon. Splendor of the stars. Swiftness of Air, Power of Flame, Depth of Sea, Stability of Earth. I rise with a mighty strength because I know the Oneness of All Creation.

The moment I finished speaking, the wind whipped around me. I paused….did that really happen? I asked myself. The answer I heard in my mind was, The planet is alive and listening.  Definitely something I believe but that morning’s experience took the truth deeper.

In four days, I made six trips up to the fort, four of them in darkness. The wildness of the place called to my wild spirit. The wind, sea and stone worked deep magic on me….for which I am deeply grateful.

Maidin ag Dún Aonghusa….Morning at Dún Aonghusa

Ridiculous Beauty of the Dawn

Ridiculous Beauty of the Dawn

_TSL6583Take a chance. Risk the extra burden. So what if the sand is soft and your burden is more difficult to bear. It’s time.

Take the leap. Never mind the excuses or reasons to fear. Do it.

Oh, but it’s heavy. What if it rains? What if it lightnings and I have to make a run for it? What if? What if? What if?

Take a chance. Risk moving beyond fear.

_TSL6600Okay. I’m ready…but….

The sand is soft. Walking isn’t easy. It begins to sprinkle. It’s lightning off shore.

Something has shifted. I feel surrendered to the Path. I laugh and keep moving….it’s okay.


_TSL6616The light begins to paint the clouds…the layers and layers of clouds. I stop. I cannot move. The light pierces my disbelief….my doubting…my fears.

Look at me, it says. Look….at….me.

Tears kiss my cheeks. Laughter erupts from my toes…up and up and up through my belly….through my heart….my mouth and finally my eyes laugh at the beauty….unable to hold back. Not wanting to.

I lift my hands to the sky. My fingers play with orange, yellow and golden light. My heart shines through dancing fingertips.

My camera whispers, Pick me up, love. 

_TSL6634My creative heart dances with glass and metal and electronics. The shutter clunks, the LED screen illuminates beauty that makes me gasp for breath.

At the end of suffering and pain, after the trials and storms, there is beauty waiting. It’s here. Now. Look up…with your heart.

The challenges and trials of the summer created a place of choice. Do I move deeper? Do I walk away in frustration?

My life coach has held my hand from afar and encouraged me to move deeper, to move beyond the obstacles within me reflected in the outer world. He has encouraged me to reach high and deep for love. And to not allow anything to keep my feet from the Path.

_TSL6639As I walk in the Sacred Temple of the Seashore I hear through the particles of light, This is what awaits the hard work of transformation. This beauty, beyond anything you have known, is what awaits those who remain true to the Path to which their soul calls.

Well, that does it. I leap and shout for joy! Why try to contain it? My open heart sings and salty tears flow to the sea. And I am made new.

_TSL6663So much has happened in the past twenty-four hours to open my eyes to the possibilities when I make as a mantra these words, I am willing.

He writes this morning, “Let your light shine in every corner of the world!” Everyone needs a life coach….a beloved friend who sees what we sometimes cannot see.

_TSL6638My gratitude list grows as I dance in the ridiculous beauty of the dawn.

How Can I Keep From….Smiling

How Can I Keep From….Smiling

simonelipscomb (1)I felt the dolphins before I parked my car. Before my feet reached the sugar-white sand or my face felt the warmth of the pre-dawn salt spray, I sensed their sleek bodies slicing through sea water. When I crested the top of the path leading over the dune the first thing I saw was several dorsal fins moving up and down through golden water. It was perhaps the most glorious morning I’ve ever spent as a sea turtle volunteer.

simonelipscomb (4)Clouds were building all around. The towering tops of some reflected the sun, not yet above the horizon. Their flat bottoms hung close to the Gulf as if teasing the surface with the sweet kisses of raindrops.

As the light increased the surface of the water turned that metallic slate-blue-turquoise highlighted by flecks of orange or gold or peach, depending on the angle. This is when the shore is at its most magic, at least in my mind.

As I strolled the sand looking for sea turtle tracks and gazing at the magnificent clouds I felt immense peace….and joy. At one point I realized I was grinning widely and even laughing at the beauty of it. A dear friend and teacher recently told me the Ocean had claimed me as Her own. Never have those words felt so true.

simonelipscomb (6)I thought back to the decision that brought me back to the Alabama Coast. My significant other had decided to move back to Iraq and I didn’t want to spend any more time alone in the overly-large home I owned on a mountain in Asheville. I had also grown weary of snow and ice and howling winds that seemed constant in the winter. I knew it was time to sell the house and move…but where? The man in my life followed his Path to work in Iraq. Where was my Path leading me?

I thought about purchasing a smaller home in the Asheville area at a lower elevation. I pondered moving to North Georgia. But the example set by my partner made me think…where is my heart calling me? When I put it that way, I narrowed it down. A coast. And even though I explored other coastal areas, it was this beautiful place of my birth that tugged on my heart.

simonelipscomb (5)There is no magic ball that tells me what’s next, if there will be a man and partnership in my life, what I’ll be doing or where I’ll be living in a year..five years . But I do know this…I am happy. I am joy-full. I am smiling in my heart. The Ocean has claimed me as Her own. I rejoice to have such a mighty Mother, Teacher, Friend.



Running Toward the Light

Running Toward the Light

simonelipscombWhen I opened the curtains and door to the porch off my bedroom this morning the light was a soft, deep orange. I peeked out and looked around the corner to the east and the sky was a palette of brilliant color. To add to the dramatic beauty, fog hugged the ground beneath the oak trees.

I hurriedly threw on shorts and a hoodie and sprinted upstairs to get my tripod. I couldn’t find the ‘L’ bracket and hex wrench that attaches it to my camera. Dang it! Where is that thing? I said in a not-so-gentle-voice. I couldn’t find it so I grabbed an attachment for my old tripod and ran downstairs, tripping and nearly falling on the stairs.

My camera was still in the kitchen where I left it last night when I came home from a music event yesterday afternoon so I quickly attached the tripod foot and headed outside, grabbing my old tripod from the garage. As I was walking to the pasture fence I was attempting to extend the legs of the tripod. Of course, the legs wouldn’t extend (the reason I replaced it after a busy summer of salt-water shooting last year that basically ended its life). The sun was rapidly rising and the brilliant blue and orange and yellow hues would be gone within minutes.

simonelipscomb (4)Screw it, I mumbled and threw the tripod to the ground, adjusted the camera settings and started shooting. It was frustrating because I love very long exposures in light such as this as it enriches the colors. But this morning, I was doing the best I could given the time constraints and equipment snafus.

Challenges like I experienced at sunrise today are really quite funny. A part of me was calmly watching myself scurrying and hurrying and I knew that all of the effort might be for nothing….I could miss the sweet light. But as beautiful as the sunrise was, I had to make the effort.

Things in life that are beautiful are indeed worth the effort.

simonelipscomb (1)