Top 10 RSPCA rescues in 2016 – They all Lived

We all love those heart warming animal rescue stories. I do anyway? Love the stories of gulls falling into vats of curry in South Wales this summer. Ending up bright orange and in need of a wash! We all would. Lots of stories to smile along with. The oversized Toad stuck in some decking in Norwich and the sheep with her head stuck in a trafic cone. One does wonder…..!

Goodby Kind Friend – The Bear The Cat

For those who have loved and lost a dear cat friend.

My cat The Bear died yesterday morning. I’m pretty sure I know the exact moment he died because at about 2.40am I woke with a full body jolt that felt like a benevolently intended electric shock and my house felt very different to how it had ever felt before. A few hours later, as the lazy winter sun was finally beginning to rise over the line of bare trees overlooking my house, I went downstairs and found him on his side in the hallway, lifeless. I wrapped him in the towel I’d been recently using to dry him after cleaning his increasingly matted fur, and buried him in the garden.

Tim Cox blog

A dear friend, Angie, sent me the link to this post and said, You might be interested to read what Tom Cox wrote when his old puss died as it is very moving. Quite long though so when you get time! It’s about the best account of the death of a companion animal I’ve ever read. I thought at first it was her voice and story, it could have been. However as I read on, drawn in, I realized it wasn’t mainly because the back story didn’t fit what I knew of her. Writing books….you could do that Angie….

This post stands in memory of all those animal friends we have buried after many years of companionship. I’m remembering Petrushka dog and Max cat both late of Shasta Abbey.

Ode to My Mother


Did I say
I love you?
Well I do
Back then you were
the competition!

You drove a
double-decker bus,
rode a motorbike.
Had an Austin 7.
And not turned 25!

1925/30 you
lived in a tent
for a summer on
the Devon coast.
And who was that man!

Now long gone
no longer the
Resting at Throssel
Beside my dad.

She lives on in me.
I love you mum.
who gave me the gift
of life and the gift of

Dorothy died December 1994 and was born 1908. She was the motivating force behind my writing this blog way back in 2003. This is my first post where I dedicate the blog to her. It was not an easy life, yet a full one.

Sound Out of Silence


A sound emerging from nothing – polished glass
Sitting in meditation, the cry of a curlew.
The slumped back straightens.
The heart no longer needing to overreach
Sound dies away
Another moment passes – bring the mind back.

By Nigel

I found a poem I wrote whilst on retreat at Throssel ages ago wrote Nigel in an email. The poem speaks to my own experience and probably a number of others who have sat in the meditation hall at Throssel. Many thanks Nigel.

Sitting In The Midst

Thank you all for leaving comments pointing to the sections of the video I linked to in my last post. So grateful we now have some time markers to go to although listening/watching the whole things is good too. That gravel voice is attractive in a certain kind of way. Here at 9.16 mins into the video Cohen voices what many of us know about. Namely the intensity of energy that floods ones body and mind while sitting zazen/meditation.  Sometimes refered to as sitting in the midst a fire. Obviously not an actual fire. PLEASE! Later, around the 11.00 mins meditation is mentioned again.

Things arise that are very disturbing and there’s no way around it… you have to sit in the very bonfire of that distress and you sit there until you’re burned away.

What he says does indeed reach the heart. In gassho, Matthew
Thanks to Matthew for this quote. We met, briefly, at Throssel where we, along with many others. remembered Rev. Master Jiyu. The 20th anniversary of her death November 6th 1996. Also thanks to Nigel for his poem, yet to be published here. The video seems to have hit the spot.