Living Our Thanksgiving…

The week since the American Thanksgiving has been a busy one, and whilst I posted the reading and musical events for the week previously, I am changing that post in a more reflective mood, as the week came along with many lessons to learn or strengthen. For one, we again learn about the incredible strength and vulnerability of life – a paradox that puzzles and inspires us at the same time. This makes us want to live our thanksgiving, every single day, for it helps us see how important are the people who populate our days and bring us joy and all the other emotions.

Dear Amanda Jishnu passed away after a lengthy, valiant and graceful battle, and Russell Eponym provided the music for a lovely memorial service mid-week that Knarf put together in her honour. Æon attended the memorial for us, as I had an unchangeable appointment that morning. I came in at the last when candles were floated at the Linden Memorial Park: Candle Beach to note Amanda’s life and the beauty and kindness she brought to everyone, especially her beloved Knarf. Our deepest sympathy goes to Knarf, Amanda’s family, and all who knew her and who will miss her smile in both worlds. Mireille whispers: Rest, dear one…rest…

Another learning about thanksgiving and gratitude centers on the power of rest in this life. A quieter week was definitely needed following a busy holiday – especially when realising that the even more hectic season of Christmas is so near. To keep ourselves calm, we enjoyed several fine spoken word events at The Magic Tree. Each one was unique and quite special…


To say that we enjoyed each and every one of these events would be an understatement indeed! Poet Laureate of Ce Soir ArtsRussell Eponym, always provides an enchanting presentation – from the Thought for the Day to the stories (Steinbeck’s outstanding Of Mice and Men, presently) and poems he shares – Russell imbues them all with his kindly spirit and brilliant mind. The music he plays for us on these Tuesday adventures is always exceptional…so if you missed us this week, remember there’s always the next: Tuesdays, NOON SLT at The Magic Tree!

Caledonia Skytower outdid herself this week…by reading so beautifully one of her own marvelous works: All Good Gifts, a tale with such sweetness as to bring tears. We were all sniffling as she recounted the story with great sensitivity…and we cannot wait for the upcoming publication of her newest book – GIVING: Holiday Tales – which will most likely be in the new year. It will be worth the wait, as the story she shared today represents that body of work so well. Brilliant, Cale!

On Wednesday, the brilliant storyteller Bryn Taleweaver came over and shared with us three of Oscar Wilde’s excellent short stories. Focused on encouraging more kindness in the world, Bryn chose to read these stories written by the writer and playwright back in a time when discrimination against gay individuals was completely accepted and expected. Wilde faced even imprisonment as a gay man who was more than likely innocent of charges levied against him. This quotation from his writings has captured my attention: “The public have an insatiable curiosity to know everything. Except what is worth knowing. Journalism, conscious of this, and having tradesman-like habits, supplies their demands.” This was an engaging reading; thank you, Bryn!

What would a Wednesday read be like without Dubhna Rhiadra at The Magic Tree? It would not be nearly as special and enchanting, that’s for certain! Dubhna always brings what I like to call a journey to everywhere, with her selections from her own writings as well as those from others. Today was no exception, as her penchant for soulful, expressive storytelling was in high gear. She reminded us that the witching season was just barely at its close…and the stories she chose were chilling and extremely entertaining! She never disappoints, and we look to next time (a fortnight hence)!

And then…THURSDAY arrived! Russell Eponym stepped to the stage at Château Ce Soir with his usual sweetness (with a wee bit of spice thrown in for good measure!). He is a truly professional musician who knows his guitars – and yes, I mean guitars (along with an array of other instruments). AND…he’s got a new one (guitar) that sounds absolutely fabulous. He treated us with it today, singing and playing in grand style. There just is nothing like Russell’s folk, blues, and beyond, and no one can deliver it as does he. Sometimes, I get lost in the lyrics of (especially) the songs Russell has himself penned…but I always seem to be blissfully taken by the guitar and other instrumental music as well. This show was lovely and fun…and we’re already anticipating next week! Russell is under treatment for cancer and is sharing that information openly now. He is doing quite well, but the chemo does lead to some uncomfortable days, and our thoughts are with him, throughout. His capacity to continue his schedule is a special gift to us all.

The above has taught us again to cherish every moment, to be kind and generous of spirit. May we remain so throughout the holiday season and beyond. More information about upcoming special events both at Ce Soir Arts and elsewhere will be posted shortly. STAY TUNED…

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