Saturday, November 19, 2016

Jacob Needleman

The struggle to exist, to not disappear in this moment, is the advancing root of the struggle to exist throughout the whole passage of time. We need to help each other in this struggle. You by asking, I by struggling to respond. This is the law of love, which rules the universe. By Jacob Needleman

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

When I come home

Here is today's entry from our Art and Words book that is now published.
I hope you enjoy it as much as we did its creation.

Last weekend I attended the SCBWII illustrators retreat. It was my first of what I hope to be many such retreats.  Coming I knew no one, but leaving I felt I made a number of friends. Coming I was insecure about my abilities, but leaving I left armed with new inspiring ideas that I can't wait to try on. So I have spent the past few days absorbing the plethora of information. Not only from the teachers, but also from my fellow students. My first order of business has been to return to this blog. My second order of business is to update add many new links, and start sharing my new work. I don't know if I will ever become a published author/illustrator but I do know that I will write and draw for the rest of my life. These activities feed my soul and consequently, make me a better person.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A woman's orchestra

A woman's orchestra

Babies do not have to come
from your womb
in order to be sung to

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Monday, March 21, 2016

A song for the South China Sea

Art by Sandra Moreano and Words by Courtney Hanes

We now sing
of a love that binds
an altered course
sinking the hate
on an anchor of pain
through mist
until they meet again

Friday, March 18, 2016

The greatest love story

The greatest love story
is like
fresh purple grapes
on a February day
dripping with taste
  sometimes in hast
(that's how you learn).

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Sleeping while the moon is full

Sleeping while the moon is full

the man at the counter says I look like his niece Alexandra
who doesn’t take no for an answer either
and looks at him with the same crinkled, confused face. 
she thinks it is impossibly foolish to 
attempt sleeping while the moon is full
and says we are not meant to lie down    easily when the night sky is so bright
that is when we should hit the road and drive all night

I smile

he smells like coffee and cinnamon rolls
his eyes are fierce with regret and mistakes,

and I wonder if he realizes what his own face looks like

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

I glamorize

I glamorize the Alaskan Frontier, 
but wonder if I’d ever have the guts 

to kill and prepare the animals  I eat every single day 

Sunday, March 13, 2016

A nod to Shel Silverstein

It is

It is a heart-warming experience
to borrow a book from a man 
who loves his mother
and listen to a sweet six year old 
read about a tree that lives
to give
and gives to live. 

It leaves one feeling 
lucky for the shepherd
who served his time,
found a boat,
and sailed back to build a home
with wood 
from a tree he carved himself. 

We are the tree that 
gives to live,
and lives to give. 

So be it, so be it. 

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Some are better prepared

some are better prepared
to take
the news that rattles and
spooks without warning
with no time to duck, cover, or
hold on for dear life.

some are better prepared
to let
it wash over their bodies and
face. clean. like a fresh start.
or a new flower, growing alongside
a field of beat down weeds.

some are better prepared
to release
the nastiness and stench of a thing
that they did not ask for, 
and are forever questioning.

some are better prepared
to close their eyes to betrayal
that knocked on the door and let itself in
with a secret key. secrets love company.

some are better prepared


Poem by Courtney Hanes are by Sandra Moreano

Monday, February 29, 2016

Stephen Levine

Stephen Levine past away in January and I am moved to honor him in someway. His book "Who Dies" was one of the most helpful books I have ever read. If you are ever at a loss as how to deal with grief or your own impending death, this is a great read. His wife Ondrea is the co-author. Although she has been in the limelight, I am sure she has played a huge role. Not only in the writing but also in his life. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

A Calf on Hollow Road

I know he is a new calf
too weak to walk alone
who only wants a teat
to suck
to be nurtured and loved,
but it's growing cold
and I've got places to go
and I'm afraid that
if I stay to love him,
he'll die anyway
I'll be left alone.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Saturday, February 20, 2016


The combination of observation along with love--not with resistance, judgment, analysis, or labeling--just observation with love and reverence, is probably the best definition of contemplation.                      Richard Rhor

Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Caregiver's Tao Te Ching

When we become more at ease with all the intensity that flows through our being, we find that we can remain present with what's happening. In this way we build proof that we can endure and even welcome all that life presents, one moment at a time.

                            "The Caregiver's Tao Te Ching by William and Nancy Martin.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Measuring the Invisible

I've had this comic in the making for years now. This idea that we can not measure our subjective experiences brought me to a spiritual awakening. I always believed that we lived in a material world that operated on principles of science. More recently I have come to believe that human life also operates on the invisible things that defy measurement.

Friday, February 5, 2016


Time lapses with light,
which retires and
brings new days
it will not remember the dirty heat,
or the chains which some bear,
     for it is too in love with living
     to feel anything but divine strength,
drink it up because that
is the essence in which we travel,
in which we are traveled.

Words By Courtney Hanes and Art by Sandra Moreano

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Kiss

Your slime and moisture
will mix
in a 
science of ancient beauty
wrapped up in stars,
an Egyptian Milky Way
of crevasses and 

Words by Courtney Hanes and Art by Sandra Moreano

Monday, February 1, 2016

As a Girl

As a girl

she picked daisies
happily lost in magical
landscapes of green 
streaked with birds 
and their worms
when she 
became a woman 
she moved to the city 
sprinkled with
skyscrapers and 
mocha dreams
and traded in 
her horse for 
an old 
model Porsche 
sped her away
     leaving behind 
more than 
dusty corridors 


Words by Courtney Hanes   Art by Sandra Moreano

Saturday, January 30, 2016


I like you
for what you
and what you

Words by Courtney
Art by Sandra Moreano

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Inheriting a Marriage

I inherited their marriage,
though (I’m certain) that was not
                     their intention.

She whispered to me often,
    “Do not go gentle into that altered night.
    Like fins in an algae covered net
    you too
             will be trapped.”

Decades later
with different jewels
he forgot the jaded rules
and rubbed his
(already smooth)
along the hardened pew.

She laughed at him and screamed,
"That's not my name!
The mirror belongs to no one!
The winter is full of frozen water, not ice!"

They became
compassionate strangers
with four working hands
but their
voices no longer matched
the ones they heard before.

They stood like wood
rotten from the inside.

They swam like fish upstream.

              They pretended to be   the people
                     that others wanted them to be.

Friday, January 8, 2016

The Soul's Garden

Art by Sandra Moreano                                            Poetry by Courtney Hanes.

The soul's garden reveals when it is full of grief or love,
unable to hide in the shadows, 
open like a mystic's eye 
that even when closed knows how to see. 
Time always lapses with light, 
which retires and brings a new day.
It will not remember the dirty heat, 
or the chains which some bear. 
It is too in love with living 
to feel anything but divine strength. 
Drink it up 
because that is the essence in which we travel,
in which we are traveled.