“The future remains uncertain and so it should, for it is the canvas upon which we paint our desires. Thus always the human condition faces a beautifully empty canvas.”
Frank Herbert

Children of Dune

Shma Israel


Yesterday morning Aube (a young french dancer who I met during a Shahar’s Tune project in Barcelona) arrived for a visit. She has been in Israel for a few months and wanted to come and share with me an idea for a project she wants to explore. She has been feeling very confined and limited and wanted to revive herself by creating. We spent some time together talking about life and about her wish. Around noon I left the house and went to get some groceries to make some food. When I returned both Aube and Andreea were sitting outside in the sun (it was an exceptionally sunny and warm day).

Shortly after that Hemi arrived – Hemi is a unique individual and good friend. He is usually very (very very) busy and so seeing him is a luxury I embrace whenever I can. Hemi and I were scheduled to do some work on the website I am helping him build. By the time Hemi arrived I was already at work cooking a late brunch for us all (spanish tortilla, peppers and fresh squeezed juice). When Hem arrived I asked him to look out at the garden: Andreea (who was feeling unwell) was sitting peacefully in the sun working on her newly launched website, Aube was lying on a blanket half-asleep with Tree, our adopted street-cat curled up next to her.

I felt fulfilled and proud showing Hemi that image. I’m in a challenging period in my life and often find myself wishing for a sense of refuge – and yet within this I felt I had succeeded in creating a place and a space that offers refuge to others. I was looking out the window, realizing and showing Hemi the richness of my life. I needed to see it.

We then all sat down to eat together. Then everyone dispersed: Andreea went to rest, Aube returned to the garden and Hemi and I sat down to work. Later that evening Aube, Andreea and I cooked and ate a wonderful tomato soup for dinner. Late at night Aube finally decided she wanted to create a few images she could take with her to continue her exploration – so we did that and called it a day.

This morning Aube, Andreea and I shared a morning drink. As we did this Aube put on a CD of a spanish singer called Yasmin. It was perfect, we all sat quietly listening to it. At one point I closed my eyes, holding my warm cup of coffee close my lips and nose. I slipped into a meditative place and a few tears came to my eyes. I felt grateful and thankful for having and appreciating these precious moments.

As one song came to a close, another started. This song slowly pulled me out of my meditative state – I realized that the words I was hearing were in hebrew and sounded like a prayer.  I then opened my eyes and looked at Andreea – and she too was realizing that the song was in hebrew. The words were taken from a famous prayer called Shma Israel – I am very distant from Judaism – so I don’t know much about the prayer – but as I write these words I realize that in a way it too is about refuge and thankfulness.

This is the song: yasmin09

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