Thursday, October 10, 2013

The October Sun of Santa Cruz

I CELEBRATE myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.
I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass.
My tongue, every atom of my blood, form'd from this soil,
     this air,
Born here of parents born here from parents the same, and
     their parents the same,
I, now thirty-seven years old in perfect health begin,
Hoping to cease not till death.
Creeds and schools in abeyance,
Retiring back a while sufficed at what they are, but never
I harbor for good or bad, I permit to speak at every hazard,
Nature without check with original energy.

Houses and rooms are full of perfumes, the shelves are
     crowded with perfumes,
I breathe the fragrance myself and know it and like it,
The distillation would intoxicate me also, but I shall not let it.
The atmosphere is not a perfume, it has no taste of the
     distillation, it is odorless,
It is for my mouth forever, I am in love with it,
I will go to the bank by the wood and become undisguised
     and naked,
I am mad for it to be in contact with me.
The smoke of my own breath,
Echoes, ripples, buzz'd whispers, love-root, silk-thread,
     crotch and vine,
My respiration and inspiration, the beating of my heart, the
     passing of blood and air through my lungs,
The sniff of green leaves and dry leaves, and of the shore and
     dark-color'd sea-rocks, and of hay in the barn,
The sound of the belch'd words of my voice loos'd to the
     eddies of the wind,
A few light kisses, a few embraces, a reaching around of arms,
The play of shine and shade on the trees as the supple boughs
The delight alone or in the rush of the streets, or along the
     fields and hill-sides,
The feeling of health, the full-noon trill, the song of me rising
     from bed and meeting the sun.
Have you reckon'd a thousand acres much? have you reckon'd
     the earth much?
Have you practis'd so long to learn to read?
Have you felt so proud to get at the meaning of poems?
Stop this day and night with me and you shall possess the
     origin of all poems,
You shall possess the good of the earth and sun, (there are
     millions of suns left,)
You shall no longer take things at second or third hand, nor
     look through the eyes of the dead, nor feed on the
     spectres in books,
You shall not look through my eyes either, nor take things
     from me,
You shall listen to all sides and filter them from your self.

I have heard what the talkers were talking, the talk of the
     beginning and the end,
But I do not talk of the beginning or the end.
There was never any more inception than there is now,
Nor any more youth or age than there is now,
And will never be any more perfection than there is now,
Nor any more heaven or hell than there is now.
Urge and urge and urge,
Always the procreant urge of the world.
Out of the dimness opposite equals advance, always
     substance and increase, always sex,
Always a knit of identity, always distinction, always a breed
     of life.
To elaborate is no avail, learn'd and unlearn'd feel that it is so.
Sure as the most certain sure, plumb in the uprights, well
     entretied, braced in the beams,
Stout as a horse, affectionate, haughty, electrical,
I and this mystery here we stand.

Clear and sweet is my soul, and clear and sweet is all that is
     not my soul.....

(Excerpt: Song of Myself _   Walt Whitman)

Transcendental Faded Denim Jacket

   Trouble, love and greatness all begin from here.   There is a reason for everything.  There is a purpose to every moment.    Perhaps hidden, undisclosed, buried deep inside the spark and intelligence of the universe.    But it is there.   We may never see it..   
We might go searching..   but its like the words looking for the mouth or the thought for the mind.
Unveiled.  And certain that there is a destiny for the most distant of us.    That we are not only happening but becoming the laughter and genius of the stars.     I imagine my appearance here and as myself taking the shape of action and reaction..    and each time a window shatters, or a heart flutters,  I am a part of that coincidence.      

"Put your jacket on and take a walk"..   says the universe..   and when I do,  the doors open wide and I am part of the concoction.     

Andrew Tipton

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The Lions Are Sleeping

I was afraid
 that when I left you there, on the corner
you would begin to dissolve into soft unimportant pieces in my mind
float on by, losing your edges like the condition of clouds,
and never return. 
I was afraid that the part of my soul and laughter and belief
 that I sliced off of my heart
 for you
would disappear as well
like it does.
relentlessly. always.  never
to be put right again. 
the heart grows back hard. the veins seal up,
the capillaries wither.  you can see the scars
left over from the memories of beautiful afternoons. and summers
of unabridged anticipation.
leaves wounds too. 
and it never heals right.  like
it used to be. whole. honest. serenely open. 
And when I was obscene. scream. blood and broken wrist.
from punching holes in the routine.
 it was because of this thought.
of returning to the empty. the spacious comfortable
of complying with the predictable amnesty of ordinary
come and
let go. disappear.
 these hearts aren't made for reliving and recreating every six months.  
I don't want to forget.  the birth of my happiness in regards to you.   
because I don't want to become numb,
and hard
and cold
and lifeless from overuse.
too many journeys along the same path.
until our climb becomes only a stroll,  and the dangerous and mysterious
fade away
Am I a contributor as well?   I do not wish to become one.
of these
complacent ones.
No.  Is this how it is for us?
NO.  For everyone who has loved and begun and ended?
and starts again.  and again.    and again.
replicating the curves and sculpture of every past
love story.   until the soul only knows how to
imitate forgotten and tired emotions.
As I leave, 
I feel myself
release..  part of my spirit and the part of my song
that is irreplaceable. gets buried
in the median between lanes of slow moving traffic, beneath the fallen branches of redwoods.
  I am aware as the blurred, silver streetlights fade
behind me
each of us eventually becomes
a soft glow
inside the other
's mind. 
I resent this about the human condition.
without causing a mess of things. 
I am not sure how it will change.
Or how to keep you as an ember inside my thoughts.

Andrew Tipton

Friday, September 13, 2013

Zoe from Bonny Doon

this afternoon is a paradox.  wet pages, and your name scrawled across a scrap of paper,   (the wind will catch it and I will lose every trace of you.)   But in this moment, life is magnificent.   
I can't remember being any more naked than right now.  metaphysically, completely, truly.      and for some reason
this is the only way to smile and mean it ..  while you're ultimately, beautifully, unequivocally vulnerable
the ocean is a mess, my hair and thoughts are a mess,  the wind keeps tearing pages out of your magazine, and I watched you draw an enormous heart in the sand before the waves washed it away.     this must be where love begins and takes you.  to deserted beaches,  so that you can have conversations with lovely strangers about the philosophies of happiness.
  I am sure we appear strange.  But neither notices our self.   As the tide comes in.  
Me sitting yoga posed, absent of clothes, poetry in my hands,  and you beside me in your rolled-up jeans and braids  We laugh and speak about travelling across California.   About where we've been and where we're going to be.   And it is simple and honest and delicate.     As the tide comes in.  
I am pleased to be here now.    I was pleased to meet you.       

Andrew Tipton


Andrew Tipton

Sunday, September 8, 2013

The Opposite of Love is Apathy

Scream out when you feel love,  do not be silent!
If you feel it going,
do not let it go silently!
Make a scene for it.  because there is nothing so uncommon
so rare and enlivening.   
if ever there was a thing worth losing yourself over, 
if ever there was a thing worth making people uncomfortable over,
Do not be polite about love,  do not be quiet or treat it casually
LAUGH and CRY about it.
let the universe know you are awake.
let the universe know you desire
from the depths of your self. 

   -  if you posses love..  cherish it relentlessly.  

-Andrew Tipton

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Unthinkable Colors from the Omens of Strangers

The next seven days I have dedicated to soaking in the bliss, waves and warm sunshine of Santa Cruz, CA.     I haven't spent much time simply inhaling the rhythms of a single city, and I already feel so much goodness from sinking into this town for a few days..  exploring my own thickness.   This week is an exploration into releasing my agenda and direction.   Not being idle..  but instead allowing my experience of this place to be shaped and guided solely through my interactions and conversation with complete strangers.  No personal research whatsoever.  No Google, no planning, no inhibitions.    I want to take obscure and fascinating paths..  discovering friends and adventures while simply and completely following the omens of the moment and my own intuition.
 So far, I have been practicing this lifestyle for three days here.. approaching Santa Cruz with this mindset has brought me nothing but goodness!   I am physically and spiritually amazed.   I am certain that this receptiveness.. this listening..  is the root to beautiful and unimaginable experiences; opportunities and gifts from strangers (stories, affection, food, surfboards, sailing, horse rides, tea, joy, wisdom, love,.)  that would not be possible any other way.      
 Increasingly, it is becoming certain to me.. that every single person whose path intersects mine.. is absolutely here for a purpose.   Even though I cannot see "why", I am learning to believe there is always a reason.    This way of thought opens up the potential of every interaction..  it opens up the unthinkable.
Last night I spent awake..  considering colors that can only be seen by certain animals.    Bears, for instance, are able to interact with colors that are completely out of our spectrum as human beings..     This thought captivated me.   Perhaps my interactions this week will be close to discovering those colors..   discovering the unthinkable

Andrew Tipton 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

All that I desire. I am.

We are wholly and utterly connected to the gifts and affections of consciousness. 
 We are the spark as well as the soul of the universe.  We are not separate from our dreams, we are not separate from our purpose or the perfection of ourselves..  .    We are and have always been in perfect harmony with the origins of what we desire.   Hope, wisdom, grace, peace, strength, immense joy, and happiness..  these are not distant or elusive;  every fragment of our heart's longing and will is extended towards us as human beings..   not waiting for us to "ask"..  but waiting for us to claim them as part of our experience.    What we desire for ourselves as humans is already ours.  

 Whether we realize this or not, each day we are consciously or unknowingly binding (accepting) tethers of agreement with greatness, goodness, weakness, purposelessness, infinite beauty, desolation..  etc.  inviting these energies, both positive and negative, into our lives.     These are our agreements with life..  these are our agreements with ourselves.       We may claim or reject any agreement.. either creating a new tether towards something we desire,  or severing one that holds us back.    Realizing that we are the source of these agreements..  the source of their fulfillment.. this is a powerful lesson. 

We have direct tethers to the insight and fearlessness of the universe. 
Nothing that exists, does so outside of our relationship with god / ourselves.  
When we are ready to accept liberty, or when we are finally ready for love or joy..  we may create agreements with these desires.    Instead of sheepishly asking for the fulfillment of our purpose..   we should say with authority and consciousness:    "I build an agreement with love..  I claim the limitless love that is offered to me through every part of the universe."      Because we are the universe, we are god, we are these emotions, we are these desires.  We are already everything that we desire from ourselves.    

Andrew Tipton

Friday, August 16, 2013

supreme purpose

"I want absolute salvation, I want freedom and understanding and lightness,  I want unspeakable pleasure, I want to be good then bad, then good again,  I want to explore and learn and get hurt and feel everything and be felt and filled and cry with happiness and experience things straight out of a novel.    I want life as close to fiction as I could possibly have."

Sunday, August 4, 2013

It was you breathless and tall

let me stay.
 for a moment longer.  time
does not listen,  as I lean against the dirty fence, tilt my head back
and watch as she signs her name on the bottom of the page.
two of the kind that loves. the greatness of drawing whatever comes
to mind.  stiches in a worn out bag.  sidewalks. denim. string binding
us together.  Alabama summers.   and vegetables. 
fingers through our hair as our voices are lost in the noise of the street cars,
and we are merely speaking into each others' eyes.
both knowing, both realizing that somehow this conversation
was longer in a different place
the world knows exactly what is right, 
through, tonight it seems too fast. 
I'll write you a poem,
as slowly as I can
\it might still be to fast
for me. 
I wish we could come back to a moment, and
finish it,  without rushing.
this would be one of these. 

folds his poetry into her hands,
paintings under his arm,
a goodbye in a smile,
moving along, 
through the rush of the darkness
through the city,
as time holds my hand and
pulls me. onward. 

Andrew Tipton

Monday, July 22, 2013

San Francisco

I began to see their faces today..  for the first time, not a blur anymore, but individual chins and eye brows, nose rings and downward gazes.     I began to tell them apart, for the first time to understand that behind each face lies infinity.   A mind, a dream, a tangle, a restlessness, a hope,   
I discovered that humanity is not one place or just an idea that we speak about eloquently..  it is the single voice of a San Francisco Mozart playing for passersby on Height Ashbury.  and the crescendo of his mandolin as he desperately looks into my eyes.  Change. Please.  
  Humanity is the Mexican mother pushing her child through Dolores Park in a broken stroller..   Humanity is the hands of gay men squeezed tightly in exclamation of their intention.   It is the captain in fisherman's wharf,  the steel in his handshake and the creases along his eyes from staring into the ocean's reflections.     I see them..   The young and the tattered, the peaceful and the misguided, the lovers hitching rides in each other's tattooed shoulders,  the first-time brave-ones, the culprits and the aspiring revolutionaries.    I see the tourists, the naturists, the poets writing their lives away in the meadows of Golden Gate Park.   Each one. Humanity.    
 Humanity is the song of a small, tousled-haired girl, whose eyes and passing smile break my heart and remind me of someone I adore in Maui. 
 Maybe to become purpose, you first have to see what you are fighting for.   Who are you fighting for.    These are my faces, these are the looks on my own face.   This is my humanity,  this is me. 
I see you.  You are me.  Humanity.   We are each other now. 

Andrew Tipton

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

In The Company of Gods

Today started with the sound of rain and then a sensation of awakening clarity.   Neither pursued or imagined..  an overwhelming sense of becoming and intuitive inflection.  

As I lay awake in my tent surrounded in thoughts of purpose,  I let myself drift through nearly seven different mental states of being.    From excitement to rage, from sensual pleasure to philanthropic visionary..   these consuming moods swept through my body,  each one fully embodying my thoughts and my physical presence.    These were more than simply emotions..    I watched myself take on entirely different shapes..   each mood was full of its own blessings and its own obstacles.    I realized that the selves that I was experiencing were all part of me; each one serving my life's purpose.    No individual part of my self can adequately create the vision I hold for my future or the future of enlightenment..   it is not until I allow myself to unleash and embrace each individual mood,  that I am able to take my mind and body to the level I ultimately desire.

There are characters of this self..   this man, this person..  every version, every character is essential and unique.  The boundaries and abilities for each character are vast and contribute to my greatness in very personal ways.   To become unified in consciousness is to allow each character to play their role..   to abandon the thought of maintaining a single presence at all times.   This means that although my belief of life / my purpose may be aligned on every level... my physical and mental ability to manipulate the present reality is open for interpretation.    
We are gods.
   Each manifestation of our self is merely one shade of our consciousness..  a unique and intricate ability, from which we may achieve all of life's purpose.  


Andrew Tipton   

This Island has a River

Andrew Tipton

/Wilderness Song

"Bitter pain is in store for me, but I shall bear it. Beauty beyond all power to convey shall be mine . . . Death may await me . . . Not through cynicism and ennui will I be easy prey. And regardless if all that may befall, let me not be found to lack an understanding of the inscrutable humor of it all." 

- Everett Ruess

Monday, June 3, 2013

Good Earth Woman


There is so much knowledge just waiting for us to ask..    This month I met purposefully strong and beautiful female farmers who have blessed me with wisdom and shown me their methods in the sustainable growing of fruits and vegetables.    It is easy to forget the sacredness of ourselves, and to forget to honor the source of our health..  our foods.     Spending time tilling soil, building shelters, admiring these roots and leaves, I have discovered that the wellness of my body is ultimately grounded in my respect for each meal..  where it came from, and acknowledging its purpose for granting me life.   
Andrew Tipton

Sunday, June 2, 2013

indomitable hope


"imagine if every will was free to roam,
imagine if the trees could tell us where to go

imagine that the sun could fill each lonely heart,
imagine confrontation never got a start,

imagine if things were always crystal clear,
imagine if the mind never interfered

imagine if we could fly with broken wings
imagine if the heart could shed its skin,

patience please,

patience please,
I'm creating a dream,"

-Xavier Rudd


Sunday, May 26, 2013

strawberry stains

I thought it would be really cool this week if I could return a little affection to my community..  since I've been back in Alabama, I've had my soul rocked by the generosity of strangers, the open-hearts of my friends, and the warmth of people genuinely happy to lend me their grace.   I have felt welcomed as a son and a brother.   
I invited my friend Jess to join me for the afternoon, and we took a ride down some beautiful stretches of Alabama back roads to find the juiciest, ripest, most succulent strawberries in the state!    After gorging ourselves on as many berries as we could possibly eat..   we picked a few to bring back with us.      
  I was reminded that often even the simplest and seemingly insignificant efforts can change everything, about a moment, a day, and a life.     I think what we do.. for better or worse.. 
great or small..  echos through the universe long after our thoughts are elsewhere. 
I'm glad to be home for this short while..

Andrew Tipton

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


(Ryan McGinley)  
To be in love with ourselves is the boldest undertaking I know of.

To forgo the instinct of personal fear,
and the hesitation that accompanies doubt.. 
To take our sanity forward {yes, as always}, but also our madness.
To know what we are here for,  and not pass it by or shut our eyes.
This is everything / every speck and dusty thought:  colliding.  
This is the transformation,  of a self.  our self.  the self.  
Acknowledging our frailty and despite it, our readiness for belief.
I see
greatness happening,
I feel
 greatness.  here.  now.  happening.
and it is as if everything rests on the shoulders of the dreamers
the ones who know that time is infinite and
that love is a disease - contagious. no such cure.
We are beautiful.  straight ahead.. as our eyes wander
and somehow we both know that nothing else matters.
not our flawed voices, and not our scars.
    This is the root of Alchemy.
To take our wildness and our virtuousness and to obey them both.  

     Andrew Tipton

Sunday, May 12, 2013

speak it up. thirsty

Thank you for sharing my place of sunset,  for teaching me the art of randomness..   for meeting me when I did not ask to be met.    For listening and for speaking sincerity.    For the loose-leaf yerba mate which I am constantly sipping.   Thank you for your kindness, and for unravelling your sorrows.     For discovering our stories in the labels, and for your pursuit of darkness. 


Andrew Tipton

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


We must be our own before we can be another's.    

Thursday, April 25, 2013

I Love You for What You Will Become

Two days ago I had a conversation with a new friend, and her words have left dents inside my heart..  
We were talking about travelling, about exploring the vastness and beauty of America and other countries;  she is well-travelled and offered some incredible stories!     At some point during our conversation, I asked her if she had ever visited the South..  I invited her to come to Alabama.
"That place scares me", she said, "I can't think of any reason to visit there..  I've heard terrible things."     
Those words were a sledge hammer against the strings of my heart.    As much as I wanted to disagree with her and vehemently protect the ego of my home..   I just stared back at her with a hot sadness.  Because although in many ways she is right...  she doesn't know what I know about my home - that there is hope.    I feel sometimes it is impossible to accurately describe hope to someone who doesn't have the will yet to believe in it.   

I come from a place that many people do not associate with enlightenment or positive vibes..   truthfully my friend's comment is not an isolated thought..   she shares the same view as many people.   The South, and especially Alabama are places that have a reputation as backwards-thinking, non-progressive, severely racist, uneducated, and hopeless..     our past has not given us room for a second breath..  we are still choking a bit on the influence of previous generations.  
But...   we will not stay that way.    Change is happening.  Right.  Now.     

The only reason a place stays the same is if the people living there remain the same. 
There are no spells holding a city or a community, or a state, or a culture to its past..   there is nothing in the land that says,  "You must always be this way."     
Our future is malleable, it is merely a reflection of our own presence or absence.  
I believe that many of us are born into cultures - and it seems as if the present way of thought is all that has ever existed.   We often don't question the ability for change,  because (in our minds)  that culture seems so permanent and so rooted in a place.     But that is an illusion!
The only thing required for changing a place, is loving it -  bringing affection to it, and not abandoning it to its past.  

I have a vision for my home.  For Montevallo, for Alabama, for the South,  for the New South.   I believe in the transformation of our culture from the inside out; not losing our traditions, or our 'Southern-ness'..   but becoming a place that generates goodness and no longer apathy.      I am discovering friends with the same vision, who share the same hostility towards repression..   friends who are investing their abilities and intention into our home.   That gives me so much raging joy!
I think that before we can fully love anyone or any other place in the world..  we must first begin to love the place we are from.    The more desperate it is..  the more love you must create for it.           
My home..  Alabama. 
I love you for what you will become.

Andrew Tipton

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


"..Show me how you follow your deepest desires,
spiraling down into the ache within the ache,
and I will show you how I reach inward and open outward
to feel the kiss of the Mystery, sweet lips on my own, every day.
Don’t tell me you want to hold the whole world in your heart.
Show me how you turn away from making another wrong without abandoning yourself when you are hurt and afraid of being unloved.
Tell me a story of who you are,
and see who I am in the stories I live.
And together we will remember that each of us always has a choice.
Don’t tell me how wonderful things will be . . . some day. Show me you can risk being completely at peace,
truly okay with the way things are right now in this moment, and again in the next and the next and the next. . ." 

- Oriah Mountain Dreamer.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Ambitions for the Wanderous

    there is never a need to fear the abandonment of love.  
Such an insecurity that plays tricks with our minds sometimes..  the thought, that if we wander too far or let a beautiful relationship out of our presence, it means we are abandoning our love for a person,.. or that we are losing theirs'. 
love never abandons itself.     

 _  traveller  
   know that you when you release love..   it is like releasing a faithful animal friend, who longs to return to you and play at your side.   when we release a person from our love..  we are not withdrawing from them..  we are offering them our affection without boundaries.   
We are saying, "You are free.  here is my adoration,  please take it with you wherever you go. 
we will see each other again soon."   

Andrew Tipton

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Street Poet Erin


'Rake the air as if it's clay
touch my face like mother's
come from nowhere.
go on journeys
we know nothing about.'

-Andrew Tipton

Monday, April 8, 2013

Friends with Boats


_Julia, acting the model.   There are so many connections to sailing here,   I feel blessed to be in a circle of people who are excited about travel and the thought of adventurous crusades.    You have to remember that friends want you to succeed..  we are all hoping for dreamers with balls.   

Andrew Tipton

Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Traveller Paradox

As travel has become an intimate part of my existence,  I've begun to realize as "travellers" we are allowed an incredible gift -   the ability to powerfully and intimately connect with new people.  I feel this is a direct result of our temporary stay.     The traveller's life is a mirror in which people look and experience their own impermanence.. it opens the door to the eagerness that resides in all of us.    Our transience makes us susceptible to the generosity and emotional receptiveness of strangers.        We are permitted to fall in love within moments..  we are permitted to venture into the deep-beautiful spaces within a person that usually take months or years to discover.    As a traveller, I've witnessed the barriers and limitations of normal relationships utterly dissolve.     I think that when we're aware of our temporary time,  it literally alters our level of communication.. creating an earnest longing to experience truth and open-ness. The walls of normal interaction disappear.. and we can address a person at their purest state.
The love experienced by a traveller is unmatched.  

As travellers we are allowed a direct connection into the deepest most fulfilling relationships that life has to offer. And ironically, it is our destiny to let them go.
I am discovering this balance.. to unconditionally offer love, and then to unconditionally "release" people from it.    We are given the gift of finding extraordinary friends, and then we must accept that our paths part ways.   It is a unique and often difficult way of living..  as so much of our life is often devoted to "safety" and "maintaining" our possessions.    It seems counter intuitive to find greatness and then set it free..    
yet, I feel that this paradox must exist. 
I believe this is how universe balances itself..  discovering and releasing -  and in neither, holding back.    

Andrew Tipton

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Journal Entry, 4/6

Journal Entry,
April 6th.

Spent the last few hours surfing some incredible wind and waves!
23mph steady from the Southeast.  
As the sunset came, the entire surface of the ocean become a mess of vibrant color and magnificent distorted reflections.   The board under my feet, I felt as though I was painting long, sweeping calligraphy through a wet and morphing canvas..
  As I surfed, I sang as loud as I could.. to the wind, to god, to myself..   the words spilled out from a shrouded and wonderful place.  
Once I made it back to shore,   I pulled on my red fleece jacket, and leaned against the catamarans to watch the final colors of twilight fade away.     My shoulders ache, my hair is a tangled mess falling in my eyes..   I am warm, and I feel engulfed by a sublime calmness.
  I feel very much awake.   I feel true.     

there is a path..  it is mine, and I am on it.


Andrew Tipton

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

this story.

some of them leave you
than when -Y'ou arrived. 
be one
of these. Places that
sovereignty through the mouth.  too
the rib's cages,  beneath the tongue.
where you can feel it absorbing.    
like the characters in your books
about discovering
this story drives a
eats cornbread with a spoon.stirs things up
a bit.  at a time
we all need to fall in love with
a desert and then a waterfall
just so we know the difference.
this story sleeps on
park benches
wh?at you're thinking
about, halfway
through the afternoon. and
hears you.listens.before the words fall out.
because we all.hope.
someone might come along and believe in us
that we believe ourselves.

Andrew Tipton

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Boat Song

This song from the Black Angels found its way into my ears a few nights ago..    absolutely rocked me.      I see humanity asking these questions...  I feel myself asking these questions of myself. 

We lose our sense of permanence, we lose our fear, and then we lose nothing anymore - because we realize it is always ours to re.make.. We are the question as well as the fullfilment discovered in our answer.  

-Andrew Tipton


Bareness of Being

"..As I get older, I long even more for the wisdom and companionship of other living things; to stay in conversation with all I love, with all I admire, with all who have suffered and given of themselves to stay alive (awake) and to keep life going.   In many ways, our stories are part of one story.  Our pain is part of one pain.  Our surprise at the beauty and fragility of life is part of one chorus of awe.   My passion now is to stay as close as possible to the pulse of what is kind and true to stay in conversation with what happens there and to experience more and more ways to listen. " 
- Mark N. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Rare Bird.

Our journey took us to the heart of Key West,  a place full of poet-visionaries and eclectic spaces. Its streets evoke the creation of music,..  its atmosphere urges you to press beyond your personal expectations.       While seeking out the lullaby echos of steel drums..  I wandered down an overgrown alley and found this man..   an Key West artist whose inspiration left a solid mark of goodness my heart.
"You are very fortunate..",  he told us..   " are young."
     An artist his entire life..  he has been sustaining his body and mind, while living in his camper van..  for the past twenty years.   Creating, envisioning, sharing, cultivating..  this man's life is about experiencing the world through his own reality.   As we talked I kept looking into his sprakling  eyes, and admiring his soft, white cloaked face..       He showed us drawings of eleborate apartments in New York,  abstract paintings of vivid colors, and sketches that can only be discribed as the "energies of music".       Wearing a loose sweater that one of his children knit..   he spoke about musicians, about culture, about the strangeness of becoming old..    and this crazy, warm smile kept making its appearance on my face.         I realized how simliar we both were.   I realized that I could be this man in 50 years..  and that didn't bother me at all..   because we are both simply humans creating our own definitions of life
I think one of the most liberating things to know about this life is that we are free to make it up any way we choose.   Meeting this artist and hearing his story reminded me of the open-ended sacredness of this non-permanent experience.    It is up to us to define or defend our pursuits..   we may (the choice is open to us) become world leaders, or we may (the choice is open to us)  become island artists living from the sheerness of our van.    It is beautiful either way.. and in all directions.    

Andrew Tipton



Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Invitation -

My new friend Ariana gave me this poem..  I am in awe tonight of discovering myself in the mouths and minds of strangers.    Ariana is a traveller and a lover of philosophical thoughts,  she left my body and soul refreshed with her warmth and her blissful, adventurous energy.   Windsurfing, philosohpical debate, and bicycle rides at 2am..    This year has just begun , and already I feel I have discovered so many facinating and inspiring friends!     I feel blessed and infinitely connected to my own reality at this moment..    


"It doesn't interest me what you do for a living
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dreams
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life's betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your
fingers and toes
without cautioning us to
be careful
be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.

If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand on the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after a night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the center of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments."

by Oriah Mountain Dreamer from her book THE INVITATION

Sunday, February 24, 2013


The presence or absence of happiness or goodness is not conditional on my perfection,
 but rather my assimilation into my moment.  What I see, or believe I see, has everything to do with my state of awareness. This experience is an echo of my own level of creation.
Are we God?   
Because the interpretation of "being" is open-ended, the outcome is wholly saturated with my own belief and certainty in HERE: 
this place - my place,  my mind." 

Andrew Tipton

Friday, February 15, 2013

Never Stop Becoming

"There are parts of me, I only recognize from photographs."   -  Sarah Kay

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Flower Sweetbreads & Peppers

Approaching the moment we live in with sacredness;  respecting not only ourselves but our exhertion and our motions.
 Just because a moment is common, makes it no less sacred.
 Just because a moment is necessary, makes it no less sacred.
We try to move through spaces that we find meaningless, but its our view that changes everything -
we may offer sacredness to a moment, or we may attempt to withdraw ourselves from it..
we will face the moment either way

A freind taught me this..
 I watched her slender hands slicing red peppers on my wooden chopping board.    Not in a way to be finished - she did not rush or become hurried.     Instead, each slice was distinct and purposeful..    with absolute presence and respect for what she was doing.
It was a moment in which I experienced tremendous inner reflection..  to see love expressed towards the simplest task..  is breathtaking. 

Andrew Tipton

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Songs for mending.

"Let it go, let it slip away.
Let it fall, everyday.
You should know you
Can let it go."

Trent Jones.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Admired by the Sun

Ryan and I threw together some gear and decided to go climb the cliffs in Cheaha a few weeks ago..      Sleeping beneath the winter stars, grilling sweet potatoes and jalapeno-sauteed steaks in the embers of a hand built fire, coaxing a little music out of the cold night sky..    everything simple, and everything that creates expansive thoughts.    
   After an afternoon of climbing rock faces..  our hands aching, our legs bruised and scratched, we both perched ourselves on a few boulders overlooking the valley...  both of us watching silently as the sun melted into a blue horizon.    
As we sat there staring out across the wilderness, I felt this warmth radiate through my body.. 
  something lifting, rising from our joy and exhaustion.   The best way to describe it, is to say that it was an overwhelming awareness and pleasure of my own humanity.   I felt certain, I felt significant..  in the most simple and yet dis-ordinary way.    I was glad with myself..  glad to exist on earth in this (human) way.  To climb and taste food, and wander and laugh and be aware of vast colors..      That seems common and trivial..  but I wonder if the rocks think so?   Or the if the sunset looks back towards us in the evenings and admires us too?    Because we are beautiful in our own right..    this is a remarkable experience - to be human.    I believe we admire many things about life sometimes, and forget to consider ourselves as well.       
   I have never been appreciative of my humanity before..      but that is changing.  

Andrew Tipton

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Skipping Stones

some. ones.   become our skipping stones, make splashes, on our surface and sink deep. deep. deeply. inside us.   we are not THE arm or THE toss..  but the water that resides in chiseled spaces.  attempting the discovery of our reflection.        

Andrew Tipton