"We ate the birds."

I had a dream the other night that the animals were pounding at our doors, demanding we give them back their land.The morning after I had that dream, I received an email from an old friend in Wales with this quote: “We ate the birds. We ate them. We wanted their songs to flow up through our throats and burst out of our mouths, and so we ate them. We wanted their feathers to bud from our flesh. We wanted their wings, we wanted to fly as they did, soar freely among the treetops and the clouds, and so we ate them. We speared them, we clubbed them, we tangled their feet in glue, we netted them, we spitted them, we threw them onto hot coals, and all for love, because we loved them. We wanted to be one with them. We wanted to hatch out of clean, smooth, beautiful eggs, as they did, back when we were young and agile and innocent of cause and effect, we did not want the mess of being born, and so we crammed the birds into our gullets, feathers and all, but it was no use, we couldn’t sing, not effortlessly as they do, we can’t fly, not without smoke and metal, and as for the eggs we don’t stand a chance. We’re mired in gravity, we’re earthbound. We’re ankle-deep in blood, and all because we ate the birds, we ate them a long time ago, when we still had the power to say no.” — Margaret Atwood I turned off my computer and thought of everything I had planned to do that day. I took out my to-do list, and in tribute to Margaret, I ate it. Then I lay down on the floor and started rolling slowly through the house: I rolled through the living room and kitchen and dining room. I rolled through the bedroom and the bathroom, and then up the stairs and into the attic. It was in the attic that I stopped rolling, and started waiting. For what, I don’t know, I was just waiting.

Nothing happened.

No movement came.

No inspiration.

No whirling dervishes.

No dancing.

I lay in the attic all morning: Nothing.

Except for this:

I remembered a story that my best friend and roommate in college, who passed away many years ago - told me one night on our porch while were still in school, and studying for finals:

My friend was hiking on Mt. Kenya with a group of 3 or 4 others.

The group heard a rustle and a roar.

They all scrambled up the nearest trees, but one of the guys didn’t make it.

He was gored and trampled by a water buffalo.

It was my friend who stayed with him that night while the others went to get help.

She banged pots and pans all night long to keep the animals away.

She peed around the perimeter of their tarp.

She boiled water.

She cleaned his wounds.

When he asked why his head was so cold, she didn’t know what to say.

He had lost a good amount of hair immediately after the attack, and there were large bald spots on his normally youthful head of hair.

She wrapped his head up in her t-shirt and tried to keep him warm.

She spoon fed him and helped him when he needed to pee.

She put pressure on his wounds - was it his spleen or his liver that got punctured through? I can’t remember - with her socks, and then her shorts. When those items of clothing got soaked through with blood, she used her underwear, to keep the blood inside of him.

When help finally arrived, when he survived to tell the tale, when the local press came to interview the group, someone else, another man in that group of 3 or 4, he took credit for all that my friend had done. He told the newspapers that he had been the one to stay up for two nights, banging the pots and the pans to keep the wild animals at bay.

When she finally cleaned her clothes of all the blood and wrung them out to dry, she crumbled to the floor and cried.

This isn’t my story to tell.

This is her story.

I wish she were here to tell it to you herself.

Your dance mission for the week is to roll through your house and then to stop for awhile and wait.

See what happens.

If something happens - a dream, an image, a story, a dance - that's good.

If nothing happens?

That's just as good.

Maybe even better.

With Warmth and Jivey Vibes, Joanna of Joanna and the Agitators sweetly agitating/persistently upending www.joannaandtheagitators.ocm

So many PS’s today, I can’t keep count:

PS #1:



Will you be there??

I hope so!!

Tuesday, August 18th from 11-1pm Saturday, August 22nd from 10-12pm

Both are at The Boulder Circus Center

To reserve your spot, of if you have any questions, email me.

Feel to bring a friend along with you.

PS #2:


(I'm excited about this one too it seems....)

I'm just about done lining up the ducks, so I'll have all the info for you next week, if not sooner.

What I do know so far, is this:

Classes will be on:

Tuesdays: 11-1pm Thursdays: 11-1pm Saturdays: 10-12pm

The session will run from Tuesday, Sept 1st-Saturday, December 19th.

Notice it’s a 15 week session this time, rather than my usual 8.

This upcoming session is already starting to fill, so email me if you are interested, and I will make sure to hold a space for you.

If you’re not sure if the class is a match for you, come check out the FREE classes to get a sense of how I work -- see above. PS #3

Someone emailed me last week after receiving my last newsletter asking if it was okay if she shared the newsletter with a friend.

The answer is an overwhelming YES.

Share it with this social media phenomena that I don’t fully understand, share it through email. snail mail, or while sipping your afternoon tea.

The more people you share it with, the better.

As always, post your comments here, or email me directly.

You know how much I love hearing from you.

PS #4

That’s all.

Have a wonderful week.

xo jo