Welcome to
Transactions with Beauty.
Thanks for being here.
I hope that this is a space that inspires you to add something beautiful to the world. I truly believe that 
you are required to make something beautiful.

– Shawna



A Beast in Winter

A Beast in Winter

It's late February, the light is low and startling. The light is acrobatic. The light is a Shumka dancer in February. 

Winter has been long. Here, the winter is always so. But now the days become incrementally longer. At first I'm wary of these new show-off days, the way the sun bathes the kitchen table in gold at certain times. Oh, it's you again, you're back. Are you really back? Oh, I believe in the sun alright. It's just that winter makes me raise one eyebrow at such easy delight. 

tea and chocolate biscuits

In winter I become a little thinned out, pared down, a bit more quiet. I nap more, I dream more, I hibernate more. I don't mind who I am in winter. Perhaps, I become a beast, like in the following poem by the Russian poet, Vera Pavlova:


A Beast in Winter

by Vera Pavlova

A beast in winter,
a plant in spring,
an insect in summer,
a bird in autumn.
The rest of the time I am a woman.


tea and steam

On cold winter days, I can see my breath, I'm a snow dragon, or some other proper winter beast. In winter I guard the treasure of myself. I guard my intimate life, my soul. 

“For anything can happen and damage the most intimate life of a person. What will have been done to my soul next year? Will that soul have grown? and grown peacefully or through the pain of doubt?”

– Clarice Lispector

I am a beast in winter, growing my soul. I have no thought yet, toward becoming a plant in spring, inevitable though that is. 

I won't yet give up winter. It won't yet give me up. 

Rumi says:

“My worst habit is I get so tired of winter
I become a torture to those I'm with.”

My worst habit is I become a snow dragon in winter and I might never give that up. 

steaming tea cup
Ordinary Affects

Ordinary Affects

Enlightenment for Ordinary People

Enlightenment for Ordinary People