Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Power of Etheric Light from Egyptian and Hawaiian Sacred Traditions

It was 1978, not long before I became interested in alternative healing techniques for both emotional and physical conditions. One day, my 5-year-old daughter, Rachel, had a stomach ache and was lying down on the couch. I had worked in an emergency room and felt this was not a serious condition; nevertheless, of course, I didn’t want her to be sick or in pain. I sat down on the couch at her feet, closed my eyes, and earnestly asked, “HOW can I HELP her?”

Almost immediately the right Eye of Horus, that Egyptian eye that psychics often use as part of their logo – which was the only way I had ever seen it – appeared in my mind’s eye, up and to my right. I had a thought to see light coming out of the eye onto her body, and in my mind’s eye I saw it go to exactly the spot that was hurting. Within ten minutes, she “lost her cookies” and was fine. No more pain. No immediate aftereffects.

While I marveled at the results, I was not really curious enough to investigate its significance and its origins. Since it seemed a powerful technique, however, when I began doing breath work sessions and rebirthing through the Loving Relationships Training in the late ’80’s, I would often call upon the Eye to assist during a session for general balancing of energy.

What I discovered in the process was that the right eye would “shed light” on a person in my mind’s eye, projecting a color and/or illuminating symbols in the person’s aura. The colors were a clue as to what chakras or what emotions might be needing attention. The symbols would tell us what areas we might focus on in the inner work.

As I continued to employ the Eye, I began to realize that the light seemed to be homeopathic. That is, if, for instance, a person was feeling a lot of anger, the light showed up as red, sometimes with dark images in it. As I watched (with my eyes closed – I don’t seem to have the capacity to “see” with my eyes open), the red would gradually fade, and another color would show up as the aura. The visuals were accompanied by a corresponding shift in the feelings of the person, a relaxing of the emotion.

About 15 years after the Eye came to me, I was taking a Flower of Life course created by Drunvalo Melchizedek and taught by Ilizabeth Fortune where I learned that in ancient Egypt there had been a 12-year mystery school of the Right Eye of Horus. Part of my awakening this lifetime was a psychic reading done even before the Eye had appeared to me, which indicated that I had been a student in such a school in a past life. Having that information made it easier for me to accept the validity of what I was currently experiencing.

While what I’ve described above is light from the right eye of Horus, I have also discovered that when I am working with someone who is in the process of dying, it is the left eye of Horus that appears, and the only color in this case seems to be an indigo or cobalt blue. The color seems to assist the person in leaving the body in a peaceful and integrated way. (When I ask for the assistance of the Eye of Horus, I let the Eye decide which it will be, right or left.)

Generally, I would say that it is as though the light from the Eye of Horus balances and cleanses our energy fields preparing us to receive the higher vibration golden white light from heaven right here in the physical. I think of the white light as the unified field in which everything has its highest being. It is unconditional love. During a session I ask the person I’m working with to join me in the visualization. As we do it together, the clearing is happening and the client is becoming familiar with a technique that can be employed at any time.

Another source of healing light came through Sondra Ray and the Loving Relationships Training when she introduced us to Hawaiian Kahuna Morrnah Simeona and Dr. Stan Hew Len (now known as Dr.IHaleakala Hew Len) as part of a forgiveness process known as the Ho’o’pono’pono. I include it here as it gives depth and dimension to the Eye of Horus, and is yet another example of the similarity of various spiritual traditions around the world. Often, the Eye of Horus light will simply bring in the colors of the Ho’o’pono’pono as described below.

In the Ho’o’pono’pono process, we employ four colors of light – indigo, emerald green, ice blue, and white – always in that same order. The colors are brightened seven times each, one color at a time. After the process, the subject of the healing is left filled with the white light. The light can be used to fill and surround a person, a pet, or even a room or home that has scattered or negative energy in it. With each subsequent color, the vibration is raised, and in fact it usually happens that once I get to the ice blue color I must take a deep breath as if to open to the heightened energy.

I share these processes that are sacred (meaning secret) because I believe that the more light we spread on the planet, the more peaceful we all can be. These are systems that can be used with other techniques, and indeed create a field of light energy in which other tools, etheric or otherwise, can be rendered even more effective in healing and balancing, whether it be a mental, emotional, physical, or spiritual condition.

Please feel free to contact me with questions, or if you have a condition that you would like some assistance with.

May blessings and miracles flow your way with ease and grace.

Anita M. Coolidge

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


When I visited truly enchanting Enchantment Resort in Sedona, Arizona, in the spring of 1998, I was fascinated to see on display an art piece hanging in the lobby by a local artist, David Fischel, depicting the legend of The Roadrunner. Did I know that such a quirky cartoon character actually had a noteworthy past? Hardly. The main reason it caught my eye, however, is that my 83-year-old aunt of Swedish descent, who had died earlier in the year, had miniature roadrunners everywhere -- on shelves, pinned to jackets, hanging as drawings on walls. What was Roadrunner's story, anyway? I was definitely curious.

According to Southwest Native legend, at a difficult time in history the people had lost fire -- there was no more heat for warmth or cooking. The people decided to call on the fastest creature around, Roadrunner, to retrieve fire once again from the God of Fire. Roadrunner was also one of the most beautiful creatures at the time with magnificent colored plumage on his head and tail.

Roadrunner was honored and glad to help. He went to the God of Fire and made the request to take back fire so that once again the people would be warm and comfortable. But the God of Fire would have none of it! The answer was, "NO-O-O-O!!!" But Roadrunner was not to be deterred. He was disturbed that the Fire God was treating humans that way and was confident that, with his incredible speed, he would be able to successfully accomplish the mission. He snuck back to where fire was kept, took what could get the people what they needed, and raced back to earth.

Unfortunately, the God of Fire caught sight of him and unleashed a great bolt of lightning. But not even that could stop Roadrunner. When he arrived back at the land where the people were waiting for him, he did, however, look a little different: while he had survived the lightning attack, alas, he had lost the plumage on his head and tail. And, of course, that is how we see Roadrunner today.

I never would have guessed that my little, sparkly, always happy and loving auntie, steeped in Swedish and Lutheran lore, could have such a real connection with a mythic indigenous figure...but on second thought...on second thought, the fit was perfect. Besides her always optimistic attitude, she had never learned to drive, and yet she traveled the world. Hmmm.

Fast forward to my next trip to Seattle when family gathered to honor my aunt and handle distribution of her estate. During that visit, my brother took me and my daughter and her two children on a boat ride across Puget Sound to Bainbridge Island, leaving from a streetend launch in the Scandinavian enclave of Ballard. This was an excursion that was regular summer fare for our extended family my whole childhood and one that Aunt Lilly must have made at least 493 times. Bainbridge Island and the Kitsap Peninsula are also the home of a Northwest indigenous tribe, the Suquamish, and their leader, Chief Sealth, whose "Speech" reminds us of the continuing spirit presence of native peoples even after death.

As we entered Hidden Cove, gliding past the local yacht club, I remembered the aliveness and peace I felt as a child padding through the evergreen forest near the cabin, learning how to row a boat, and sitting around the campfire at night singing songs and listening to family stories. Silently I greeted the spirits I imagined were still there, asking if they remembered us, and they seemed to respond with, "How could we forget?" How sweet. It made me smile. I certainly hadn't forgotten them.

We spent about an hour in the small harbor, floating offshore, my brother and I reminiscing about adventures we had had there. It wasn't difficult to call up the memories: the scene looked nearly the same as it did 30 years before, including a cabin cruiser I recognized, listing a bit to one side, the varnish pale and peeling.

We returned to Ballard and pulled the boat up the launch ramp. It had been such a deeply satisfying trip, these three hours away. As we got our land legs back, I absently scanned the western sky under whch we had just traveled.

The thought came to me that the string of clouds which extended across above the horizon was much too long to be an angel. As I kept gazing, I realized that what I was seeing was -- you may have guessed it -- a Roadrunner -- in classic one-foot-forward/one-foot-back pose, tilting forward and down a little, as if heading for Lilly's soon-to-be-sold house! Extraordinary enough, this perfectly etched relief in white vapor, but the most magical feature of all was the small rainbow which, for a few minutes, graced the tail, a reminder of the ancient legend!

There was obviously no signature on this piece of art, and it was as transitory as a Tibetan sand painting, but it has a special permanent place in my inner gallery.

I give thanks to my aunt, to Alice and Mark who invited us to spend time at their cabin, to the spirits of the Suquamish, to the land and people who spawned the ancient story, to the artist who brought the legend to my attention, and, yes, to Roadrunner himself for inspiring us to not give in or give up, to carry on with lightness and laughter -- as my aunt was always wont to do. Oh, and thank you also, Roadrunner, for making this journey from the Southwest to the Northwest, and in such perfect timing.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Lessons from Lenses

Over the past, ahem, 30 years, I have learned some critical lessons in the care of my contact lenses – yes, my tiny gas permeable pieces of plastic that help me see and that also enhance the blue of my eyes – every day. Did I know that I could learn such profound lessons from something so small, transparent, and voiceless? Hardly.

The first experience happened about the time I was dealing with my failed marriage: my soul was dying, I thought, and we had a daughter, age 4, to consider here – it wasn’t just about me. One day I remember being especially distraught on the houseboat where we lived on Lake Union in Seattle. Yes, for a time I was “sleepless in Seattle,” and, yes, we happened to live across the lake from the houseboat in the movie.

That day my husband was at his dental office, as usual, and Rachel was at her day care center – and with all of the turmoil inside me, I started to cry – a lot. After a while, my left contact lens was bothering me, so, in my upset, I went to the sink in the bathroom and hurriedly leaned over the sink and popped the lens out of my eye. Unfortunately, I had not put the plug in and – you guessed it – down the drain it went. I could have easily replaced the lens, but just in case it could be retrieved, I grabbed a flashlight and through my tear-drenched eyes, looked down the drain. To my astonishment, there was the contact, stuck convex against the side of the pipe. I wet the tip of a finger, gently and slowly reached down toward this little piece of plastic doing an incredible acrobatic trick, and brought it back up to safety. Whew! That was close!

Lesson 1: Even though everything seems to be going down the drain, always look for the seemingly impossible possibilities.

The second profound incident happened when I was waiting in my car after dropping a friend off at an appointment. For anyone who wears hard lenses, you know that the way we get one off its place on the iris is to basically “pop” it off by stretching the eyelid and closing the eye. Well, somehow, as I was waiting for the friend to return, I guess I looked to my right and back out the back right window, hitting the headrest in the process – and guess what? As I quickly turned my head to the right, the headrest was in the perfect place to pop the contact out of my right eye!! Oh no, I thought, no, I can’t have lost my contact! This time, I would not have liked the idea of paying for another one. Oh, no!!

Frantically, I looked everywhere before disturbing anything, in case it had just flipped out on top of something. Nada. So I started going through everything in my purse that was open on the seat beside me. I looked on the seat, on the floor, all the time saying, Oh, no, it’s gone.

Then I decided to change my thoughts, to change what I was so freaked out about, to change the possibility. I settled down a little, decided to start saying, “I’m now finding my contact.” I said it over and over, in my mind and out loud. And of course I called on Saint Anthony, the one who helps us locate lost objects.

After that ten minutes of frantically tearing things apart, I started saying the new momentary mantra, being conscious of the emotional energy I would need to put behind my new sentence to make it happen. Within just a minute or two, I had the thought, hmm, maybe it went down between the seats. I found my little flashlight in my makeup bag and threw some light down the crack right beside me. Bingo! There it was, as in the first incident, somehow stuck on its convex side about an inch down. Below it, just a dark slit into oblivion. And this time there wasn’t enough room for me to put my hand down to get it, nor could I do the body torqueing that would be required to a) put something below it to stop it from going into the dark hole and b) to actually retrieve it with some kind of tool; I would have to wait until my friend came back.

With his help, holding a plastic knife with some fabric wrapped around it below the lens (in case it fell as I was retrieving it), I gently inserted a piece of fabric that I had moistened, contacted the contact, and again had the thrill of pulling a little acrobatic piece of plastic back to safety. Unbelievable.

The turning point seemed to be my changing my thoughts that I had lost it to, instead, that I was finding it, with an enthusiasm over the top.

Lesson 2: Our thoughts create our reality; change your thoughts, change your life – and be sure to put e-motion (energy in motion) into the mix.

Now, if you think the previous two accounts are somewhat miraculous, wait ‘til you read this one. I was dog-sitting for friends while they blissed out on a cruise to Mexico. For me, it was a wonderful week away from my rented space, a retreat of sorts, a time to rejuvenate and meditate. Midweek, I designated two days for contemplation and quiet – no TV, no radio, just me looking inward and enjoying the place I was in.

One of those mornings I did the usual – walked the dogs, had my coffee, put on my makeup, including the – yes – installation of the contact lenses. (Incidentally, I am still wearing the same pieces of plastic I purchased 20 years ago – yes – 20 years ago. Explains why I’m so attached, yes?)

After completing the contact regimen (as you can imagine, I am now very careful to stop up the sink before I do the drill), I unstopped the drain, put my things away, turned off the light, and walked out into the living room. Oh, no, where’s my right lens?!? Panicked I ran back through the bedroom, hoping I wasn’t destroying the lens that might have simply fallen to the carpet, and charged into the bathroom. I turned on the light. The lens was nowhere to be seen.

Almost automatically, I reached down to the stopper, which I slowly unscrewed off its support. I gently lifted it, and there, balancing on one of the cross-struts, its concave side looking up at me, was the contact. I held my breath as I moistened my finger (without turning on the water, of course) and very slowly and methodically moved toward the lens. I made contact with the contact, simply moved my hand away from the drain, and felt more gratitude than I think I’ve ever felt. Truly a miracle. If this little piece of plastic had been half a hair’s breadth to the left or right….well, you get the picture.

After I replaced it into my most grateful right eye, I, in my meditative mode, asked Spirit if this was the intensity of gratitude that one must feel in order to magnetize love/money/opportunities/whatever; I have to say I saw a huge nod, a definite “YES!!”

Okay, I think I get it.

Lesson 3: Meditate a lot and take action that is inspired; follow your intuition. The result is the gratitude, and that can only bring us more joy.

So, with Lesson 1 of expecting seemingly impossible possibilities, Lesson 2 of minding – and changing – my thoughts, and Lesson 3 of taking inspired action, I can be grateful for the power this gives me to focus – pun intended, I might add – to focus on the very best for all and to complete the task.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I Don't Get It -- Reflections on the Death Penalty

The Terminator has made sure that four inmates on death row in California have been put to death. In the case of Stanley Tookie Williams, his reason for doing so was that Williams “showed no remorse for killing four people in a convenience store robbery,” a crime which Williams had denied from the beginning. I'm wondering if the Ter.....I mean the Governor..... has any remorse, because in his last few years, Williams actually got to the point where he was helping kids get out of gangs instead of into them. He said, "If you have the courage to get into a gang, you'll have the courage to get out."

Meanwhile, the White House is out to punish physicians, protected by Oregon law, for assisting in suicide for patients with debilitating diseases who choose to end their suffering.

And then we hear that the U.S. president is demanding that the Hamas stop its violence or the U.S. will not talk to them, while, as we know, the murder rate in Iraq has surged since we illegally entered in the name of fighting terrorism. Add to it the trial of Saddam Hussein accused of killing under 200 members of an opposing faction, while the numbers of civilians, let alone soldiers, killed in Iraq as the result of the U.S. invasion is in the hundreds of thousands, and the country is in shambles on all fronts and levels because we are there.

I don’t get it.

But currently there is a critical life/death issue where a young man in Georgia, Troy Davis, has been convicted of a murder that he denies, a case in which 7 of 9 witnesses who testified against him have now said they were coerced by the investigators to lie in court. In addition, there is no physical evidence against him, and yet he has been sentenced to die next Monday, October 27.

Please go to www.aiusa.org (the Amnesty International website) to find out the details and what can be done -- basically contacting the Georgia Board of Probation and Parole to set this man free. Unfortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition to review the case meaning that the new evidence that points to another person cannot be brought up in any court! (Does that mean that all of our rights are now in jeopardy? I thought we were "innocent until proven guilty.")

I trust that, someday, I will get it, and so will everyone else, and that by that time there will be no more war, no more borders, and a lot of smiles – a language that everyone can understand.

AND we all need to TAKE ACTION NOW! Go to www.aiusa.org and get the details on how you can help -- because you CAN help.

Peace be with us all -- we are, after all, human beings. I will definitely feel more peaceful when Troy Davis is set free to return to his family, and, on a broader scale, when the death penalty is abolished in the U.S. altogether. Those are my current visualizations and affirmations -- I hope you will join me.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Now and Zen

As we know, wondrous things can occur in our own backyard, and it’s true that wherever we are we take ourselves with us. Still, experiences in travel to foreign lands hold special value and would not necessarily have occurred at home. Such, it would appear, is true of my trip to Taipei, Taiwan, in 1984. I had had magical things happen in my life, but this one is close to the top. What began as a gig doing voiceover for a Chinese teacher living in Seattle who was creating English tapes for her students in Taipei led to three rich months across the ocean teaching young Chinese students in person – as well as being taught.

It began when, in addition to the voiceover work, I was also doing some video editing with another of the “voices.” One day when he and I were in the editing suite, I excused myself to make a phone call to my landlord to let him know that I and my 11-year-old daughter would be leaving our apartment at the end of the month. I had been feeling it was time to move, but I hadn’t made the call; I felt a strong impulse to do so at just that moment, even though I had no idea about where we would be living next. (Yes, I tend to live on the edge.)

When I returned to the editing suite, my cohort announced that Ruth, the producer of the English-teaching tapes, had offered him a job in her school in Taipei for the summer, and he could take his little boy – but he wasn’t able to leave other responsibilities. “Wow,” I thought, “maybe that’s where we’ll be for the next little bit!” The journey had begun.

It took some talking, but I finally convinced Ruth that Rachel and I would be a positive addition to her staff there. While Ruth was friendly, she was also very careful. She did repay the tickets once we arrived there (and immediately on landing, I might add), and even took us on a tour of the southern part of Taiwan before we began work, which was a special treat, but held our return tickets until it was time to leave. Did I mind? Hardly. I wasn’t planning to leave anyway, so it wasn’t an issue. I was open to whatever this journey would bring.

While there were many adventures there, simple and complex, which still resonate in me, one that stands out had to do with my desire to study with a Zen master since, after all, I was close to where such practice began. But I hadn’t actually sought one out.

One beautiful Sunday, Rachel and I were at a nearby park, which was a common destination on a day off for anyone living in this teeming city. It was a very warm afternoon, with a little wind, so after sitting for a while, I left Rachel flying kites while I walked to the ice cream stand. On the way back, I passed a man walking in the opposite direction holding short bamboo sticks, two in each hand, with which he was clicking out a beat. I smiled and walked to his beat a bit. He was short, with shaved head, slight build, a mischievous smile, and simply dressed in khaki pants and shirt.

After I returned to my bench, I noticed him a short distance away entertaining a group of kids, and since I wanted to document everything I could on film, I walked over to him with my 35 mm. With touristy sign language, I indicated that I would love a photo of him, and he duly posed.
Then he walked toward me and handed me his bamboo sticks, with the obvious invitation to “play the sticks.” I tried, but needless to say I did not have the mastery, and by this time I was laughing along with the kids who were practically falling down in hysterics. When I handed the sticks back to him, he proceeded to hold them to his heart and sing, in virtually operatic tones, a song to me in his native language. I stood motionless in awe and appreciation, and at the end thanked him with a bow and a smile.

Later, he came over to where I was sitting and had something for me. He dropped a handful of white, fragrant blossoms into my open palm, and gave me a book of songs, handwritten in Taiwanese. He also gave me his business card with the Chinese side up. I turned it over -- it said “Zen Master.”

That week I had the photos developed and the next Sunday found him again in the park to give him prints as a thank you for letting me take his picture. I watched him for a while in his interactions with the people around him. Again, as was obvious the week before, I saw his combination of play and sing. He was in total glee as he relentlessly teased a pet monkey on a leash that was sitting on the shoulder of an elderly gentleman. In the next moment he was standing beneath a baobob tree, singing in his serious operatic style to the accompaniment of a classic single-stringed instrument played by a focused and very peaceful younger musician. A crowd had gathered.

I was grateful: I had, however briefly, studied with a Zen master. With the park as the “temple,” as indeed anywhere in the world could be, his unspoken message of “life is improv” stays with me: “Now and Zen, play and sing,” a live teaching he so easily shares with other perfect strangers in the park.

Anita M. Coolidge

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Well, as my first ever blog, I would like to explain the reason for my blog title. In the mid-'80s I was introduced to breath work and rebirthing, a process based on a way of breathing that at once relaxes and reveals what we have stored in our subconscious. So, not only can we speak words because our breath moves our vocal cords, but the breathing creates an awareness in us that can bring forth thoughts that, of course, are sets of words.

Okay, on to the winged part.... Also way back 20 or so years ago, I had the pleasure of interviewing Ken Carey who had written "Return of the Bird Tribes," a piece about how native tribes, especially in the northeast part of our continent, carried out practices that created peace between different groups. Carey is saying that there are a few of us humans who have come back with that as a goal and value. Made sense to me. And since I always have loved birds and feathers -- their beauty, their smarts, the incredible variety -- hmm, okay, I'm there. If you'll bear with me, I will share some brief but memorable sketches of my bird encounters:

* * *

During the revival of street trees along the busy boulevard at the top of Capitol Hill in Seattle that is Broadway, I recall my delight that the city was greening an intensely commercial area, and that the best part of all was that it was now possible to not only have cleaner air, hear the musical rustle of the leaves in the breeze, but -- most importantly -- come eyeball-to-eyeball with -- a sparrow!

The Quetzalcoatl, the colorful bird of Mexico, exists in my mind as more myth than reality, though it is replicated in ultra-colorful large macaws. Whenever I come across such a feather, I truly feel blessed.

* * *

Before I left Seattle to transplant myself to southern California, I was given a large mandala made out of feathers, an etheric shield of sorts, by a member of the Native American-led spiritual meditation group I was a part of. For the move, I carefully boxed it up in an oversize, thin carton that accommodated its two-foot “wing span.” For three years, it remained boxed while I became acclimated to my new environment; we don’t want to rush into these things, after all.

When I finally made the move to the Los Angeles area from San Diego, finding Malibu as home, I had forgotten what was in that odd-shaped box, but amazingly it had a pulse, a life of its own that made it stand out from all the rest of the boxes that had been in storage for so long. The feather shield practically spoke to me like an old and good friend when I lifted it carefully out of its container. Even without the feathers inside, the box itself seemed to have life and light in it. I was amazed.

* * *

I was first brought to Malibu to housesit for friends I had known 25 years earlier in Seattle when we had met as houseboat neighbors. Their Malibu house was in the middle of what had been a large ranch and now was being gradually subdivided. Still, there were wide open spaces. A long drive lined by trees led up to the walled compound. On my first night there, having driven from Hollywood along Sunset all the way to the ocean, and then up Pacific Coast Highway, I was clear that I could stop wondering where I would make a home. Malibu was it.

As I drove through the gate at the end of the drive in the gathering dusk, I saw -- and felt -- a dark form swoop down over the hood of the car. It had to have been an owl. I appreciated the welcome. The next day, when I walked down the drive to water the trees, an owl feather whispered to me from the ground, and of course has found its way into my permanent collection.

* * *

Of course, there is also the chance meeting in Santa Fe one day, the last day of a holiday there (well before my move to Southern California) when a certain tall, friendly Indian approached me as I strolled along the Rio Grande in the quaint town. The affable native asked me how I was, and then interjected that he thought I looked a little sad. I told him I was, indeed, sad since this was my last walk along the river before returning to my home in the Pacific Northwest. He looked at me earnestly and admonished me to please go to see his artist friends in Taos, that I needed to see people in the pueblos. I took it as a deeply insightful and thoughtful gesture, and regretted I didn’t have the time. His friend called to him, and as he left he extended his hand with its long fingers, and introduced himself. “I’m Lee Feather. I’m pleased to meet you.”

* * *

I welcome the thought that, as Ken Carey says, indigenous people see birds as closest to the Creator, here to bring messages and love from above. But besides my personal connection with our feathered friends from early on, I simply reflect on the simple pleasures of bird watching: of seeing a flock of 25 pelicans flying low in formation above the ocean just offshore, effortlessly gliding on updrafts, or gently moving their massive wings almost in unison; or the even more intense scene of perhaps 50 birds, smaller than the pelicans, flying in a cloud, all making their moves in the same direction at the same time (how do they know when to dip and swerve?); or of seeing an entire flock of red-beaked seagulls, standing (on one leg or two) on the sand, all facing into the wind and the setting sun; or in my mind seeing the scene reported by my sister who noticed that a flock of sparrows sitting on a telephone wire had, in the center, a light turquoise parakeet who obviously found freedom and companionship, no doubt oblivious to their genetic differences. Many things to learn from our delicate, beautiful, and gifted feathered friends.

* * *

And then again, perhaps the most affecting experience with a bird image was when a roadrunner appeared as a cloud formation in Seattle’s western sky while I was on a trip north tying up some loose ends after my Swedish aunt’s death. The roadrunner had been her mascot; she had them everywhere. According to Indian legend, roadrunner originally had a colorful tail and plumage, but lost it when the sun god attacked him for retrieving fire for the people. The most astounding thing about the vaporous image in the sky was that for about a minute a small rainbow actually appeared across the tail, an echo of the native legend.

I am convinced that spirit comes to us in many ways, but that birds with their feathers bring something – and mean something – extra special.

Anita M. Coolidge