In the stillness of night, when the world was asleep, my heart heard the words: GOODNIGHT FROM HEAVEN. I've hesitated to write here about the recent passing away of a dear friend, Neele. When I received The sudden news a few weeks back, it momentarily shattered the innermost heart of what I've come to know as feeling AT HOME on earth. Beyond our personal abodes, we grow the gardens that are abiding through the spaces and songs of friendships. Like the refrain or chorus of a musical score, we all get to know well, how it begins and somewhat of how it ends, but it's the spaces IN BETWEEN that fill the pages of a life-story with original lyrics & songs of friendship. She left the world with many songs in many hearts. Anyone who knew Neele at all, will, I believe, know for a lifetime one of the greatest treasures of our humanity--- a true friend. A few weeks ago, surrounding the sadness of our celebration of life gathering to remember her, the gladness was remembered in the hearts of so many, and rendered, especially, in the faces of her children, Colin and Arianne.
Neele was exceedingly generous with her gifts... her joy and infectious laughter, her affections and artistry... she had the wisdom to---in the works of the infamous music--- Let It Be... to not intrude upon what she may have considered to be divine arrangements, but rather to gather the energies and impressions, notice the patterms of movement, observe the animation--- and simply give thanks for the elementary GOODNESS and dynamics of A GREATER LOVE that was somehow ever-present and to be trusted. Her faith was strong that way.To hear her talk about Life's images & impressions, was like viewing verbal pictures at an exhibition... to be observed, to be sought out and strengthened by, to be revered, one-by-one, as yet another reflection of Divinity, bearing gifts for a struggling humanity.
Sometimes Neele would say or write "Thank you, Mara, for just being you." Who in this world wouldn't know the priceless gift of space and room to grow that only a true friend allows? In a refreshing and earthy style all her own, she polished pearls and tended rosebushes in all those IN BETWEEN spaces of so many lives, so many hearts, making us all, feel at home...I was so blessed and inspired and remain in awe of this beautiful woman, dearest friend, and the numerous ways in which she resided in my life. And I'll always remember her colorful personality, bundled in scarves and subtle accessories, thinking like a mountain and moving through our lives like a gentle breeze, as dusk descended one ordinary day, and changed our lives forever.
[Neele's bird is her original sketch; she did a lot of painting in her later years. Below is one she did of her favorite, local place to hike at the end of Coldwater Canyon in the L.A. area.}
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