More Quotes!


Writing has been a constant outlet for me. I briefly stopped writing altogether after the police took my computer away for over a year and spread my words that had been meant for my eyes only to whomever they wanted. After that I couldn’t write for close to two years. For a girl who could fill up a math note-book with short stories, poems, quotes and randomness of words not writing a sentence was torture. Once it was “safe” to write things down again (I’d stopped being considered a suspect) the horror of what it was like for people to steal my words and use them against me remained and it was a fight of wills to put my thoughts on paper. That is how this blog got started, a way to get me to write again. I love this quote, I think it defines what it is to be a writer.

“The Raven”

By Edgar Allan Poe is one of my favorite poems!

  Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
“‘Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door –
Only this, and nothing more.”

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; – vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow – sorrow for the lost Lenore –
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore –
Nameless here for evermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me – filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
“‘Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door –
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door; –
This it is, and nothing more.”

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
“Sir,” said I, “or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you”- here I opened wide the door; –
Darkness there, and nothing more.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Lenore?”
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Lenore!” –
Merely this, and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
“Surely,” said I, “surely that is something at my window lattice:
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore –
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore; –
‘Tis the wind and nothing more.”

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately raven of the saintly days of yore;
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door –
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door –
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore.
“Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven,
Ghastly grim and ancient raven wandering from the Nightly shore –
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!”
Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.”

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning- little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blest with seeing bird above his chamber door –
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
With such name as “Nevermore.”

But the raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered not a feather then he fluttered –
Till I scarcely more than muttered, “other friends have flown before –
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.”
Then the bird said, “Nevermore.”

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
“Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters is its only stock and store,
Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster
Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore –
Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore
Of ‘Never – nevermore’.”

But the Raven still beguiling all my fancy into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door;
Then upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore –
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt and ominous bird of yore
Meant in croaking “Nevermore.”

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom’s core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion’s velvet lining that the lamplight gloated o’er,
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamplight gloating o’er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then methought the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose footfalls tinkled on the tufted floor.
“Wretch,” I cried, “thy God hath lent thee – by these angels he hath sent thee
Respite – respite and nepenthe, from thy memories of Lenore:
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!”
Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.”

“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil! – prophet still, if bird or devil! –
Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted –
On this home by horror haunted- tell me truly, I implore –
Is there – is there balm in Gilead? – tell me – tell me, I implore!”
Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.”

“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil – prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us – by that God we both adore –
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore –
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore.”
Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.”

“Be that word our sign in parting, bird or fiend,” I shrieked, upstarting –
“Get thee back into the tempest and the Night’s Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken!- quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!”
Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.”

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,
And the lamplight o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted – nevermore!

Some people indeed do walk into our lives, and some even if we never see them again, we never forget. Mom has this quote on pretty art work around the house. While simple, it reminds me of a time when the saddest thing was a friend moving away and not life as it is now.

I can’t but help think this must be true. And to the degree of “hold” together I hope no one ever knows just how bad things can be only to watch your life slide downward every day after and to silently prevail when the whole world is in chaos as it continues to slide further in state I can only describe as Hell. A Hell that lives in our minds and the minds around us.

This is how I make peace with the constant change of faces (furry & human). If our love for one another is real we will meet again. If not, then there wasn’t ever really anything to build upon to begin with.

With family issues and relationship issues this rings truer than true if that makes sense.


FINALLY it all makes sense now! All my bad grammar, typos and what not is just Coyote letting me know he approves of my writing! (For those who are slightly confused.. Coyote is consider the Trickster God among many, MANY Native American myths & Religions). And for those who are wondering why I might actually be happy with the God of change and tricks smiling at me, The outdoor survival camp I attended and worked at was fondly called “Coyote Tracks” even though the program itself is call ‘Children of the Earth Foundation’ or just “COTEF”. “Coyote Teaching” is the method we employed most to get the kids interested in the skills. Coyote has a special meaning to most COTEF and Tracker students.


The Sun is out

Today is so pretty, when I woke up from half asleep state around 9am I almost got out of bed to enjoy the outside world before work. But a the lingering exhaustion and words of my friends ‘GET SOME REST’ made me think twice about. At this point I’d only had about 2 1/2 hours of poor broken sleep. I decided maybe this half ass napping would be better than nothing and maybe help keep from getting sicker. So I stayed in bed. Now I glance out the window at the glorious day and can’t help but feel like I made the wrong choice. I curse the fact that I couldn’t get in a measly four hours so that I could enjoy the sun a but before heading into work. Hopefully tomorrow will be just as nice and this time I’ll go out – screw naps.  Beautiful sunny Alaskan days are numbered as Fall comes down the mountains. Need to get out while I can!

Short but not sweet

I’m back to not sleeping. I’m on all sorts of medication to make me sleep but they seem to have stopped working as of late. It’s a struggle to remember things and keep my focus (as if the PTSD wasn’t making those issues bad enough already) particularly at work but even just the everyday things can be quite challenging . I get sad often when I can’t sleep and my mind runs amuck with things I’d rather not think about. I just wish for an end in sight of the pain in my back and in my head. I know it’s useless to wish for the pain in my heart to lessen and that it’s a burden that all of my family will likely bear. But I do hope that I have more to smile about in life in general one day.

Exhaustion seems to dodge my heels at every turn. Some days it feels as if my eyes have sunken into my face and that only sheer will keeps me from having a blank mask so as to not broadcast my state of mind.


I don’t really know how to put the rest of my jumbled thoughts into words so I guess this is all for now.

~ Joannie

Life without Reuben & company

Reuben has been gone for almost a month now, I would say I’m fully adjusted to not having my best buddy in Alaska with me and now spending time with the good friends I do have here.  It was similar to when I first moved away from Lorien and had to adjust to not having the most special friend in the world at my beck and call. While no one can take the place of another person their relationship to one can be just as meaningful and complex. Reuben is certainly not Lorien and nor did I think of him as a replacement for the absence of her physical company or words of wisdom. I take everyone as their own person and whatever relationship I develop with them does not impact existing ones (many a past boyfriend was slightly confused by this phenomena with my male friends). When Lorien visited me this spring Reuben spent some time with us both and it was a wonderful thing to have two awesome friends who weren’t worried or threatened by one another and instead all three of us bonded in the things that we can enjoy. I can’t say I’m thrilled to have adapt to being without a trusted friend again in such short time but I’m glad to call Reuben a friend. Life takes us wanderers all over the globe but for those who truly care distant and time zones don’t matter. I have a feeling Reuben may become another friend in my collection of amazing people I know and call friends regardless of how much I actually get to see them in person. As for how Reuben is, he is getting more job interviews than maybe one needs and finding himself in Seattle. I think he’ll do great. Hopefully I will get to spend some quality time when he visits his family over the Holidays.

Which brings me to my future plans of trips, living in Anchorage Alaska and Holidays. As of now (which may change) I’ve nowhere near the money to travel home for Christmas and such. While my heart breaks at going so long without seeing my family I understand that the first few years of being “out” often result in this and hope that no one on the farm takes it personally. My Aunts who have been great supporters of my own Journey have told me their tales of being away from home for the first couple of years and not being able to make it home for the Holidays to help with the guilt. As for staying in Alaska and where I might end up in the future, I’ve given things quite a bit of thought and talked it over with friends and family I think will give me their perspective without letting their emotions cloud their words and have decided to stay put in my life that I’ve built here till at least next summer and re-evaluate again once the snow clears (which is about June here). My reasons vary from the rocky economy to my health and “fixing” myself before trying to help others (my family).  I had been entertaining the idea of at least relocating to the lower 48 so as my Brothers could see me easier and more, but at this time such a move would just be starting over what I struggled with here, housing, job, money, ect and I don’t know that I need to force that upon myself unless the need is dire – particularly with how my immune system has been failing me of late. I have finally made some friends and connections that worth mentioning and seem to have a fairly steady job even though I don’t make much money I can depend on it. My living situation is the best I’ve had in a few years and my roommates are absolutely wonderful. I actually have doctors who know my first name and people in this time zone who might be willing to help in jam.  Right now the prospect of establishing all this AGAIN is beyond what I can make myself think. So while I feel hella guilt for my family and some friends, I am staying in Alaska where I feel the most okay right now.

So what am I doing? Working… A LOT. The word must be out because as of late we are over goal on training sales and people seem to be coming in without any salesmanship needed to lure. While great for my bills and savings, my health and brain have been going downhill. Catering to so many puppies and their needy (but usually in a good way) people is utterly EXHAUSTING. The other week I got bit and scratched more than a few times that drew blood and I have to use first aid skills to fix. I would never put these puppies and dogs in the pound as people sometimes suggest I should consider in some cases; all of these canines are in need of help and most I CAN help – it’s  just very hard on my body and mental state. But saving dogs lives and giving their people tools and a piece of mind they may never have otherwise gotten is very important to me. Thus far I’ve done very well in not ACTUALLY taking home the needy animals that cross my path and instead find them someone who can help them. But I’m afraid the day is closing in.. I like to think I can blame my upbringing for this particular trait. Dad won’t turn away anyone who he can help and Mom well.. rescuing horses wasn’t enough we adopted my wonderful Brothers and Sister too. So as a product of this I help pretty much anything that crosses my path..stray pitbulls, baby birds, 1 week old kittens, loose horses, unwanted ferrets ect. I’ve had boyfriends and friends tell me I do it to the point of a fault but I think they have no say because I don’t ask for their help. It’s just part of who I am. So the bulldog puppy that bit me ten times isn’t getting reported, I am helping her instead.

Speaking of puppies a certain springer spaniel needs a potty break so that will have to for now. ~Joannie

Part two (later in the day)

Okay back to what I’ve been doing. Besides work I help friends out with their dogs, try to take care of my own dwindling health and hang out with my Anchorage buddies. Good friend Emi who moved away for a bit is back for at least a few months much to her chagrin and though I wish she were happier I’m glad for her friendship so close. Stefanie who has been friend to me the longest (only shortly after I moved here were we friends) has been busy with her own life as of late but we still get to see each other and enjoy one another’s company even if it’s only for a few hours. Thick and Thin Stef and I have been friends. Danny whom I’ve known for quite a while (gym & MMA guy) and grew up here is back to spending time with me (for which I’m thankful for! as he was very busy over the summer). Other than these three wonderful people and my roommates I don’t usually spend much time with people outside of work. It’s hard to break my hermit tendencies here of late even when I’m lonely and want too. Now and then I will see some of Mom & Dad’s friends and “catch up” as they often treat me to food. I thoroughly enjoy hearing about my parents, especially Mom when she was my age and gives me some idea what she might think about my choices now. While not coming anywhere near filling the black hole it gives me things to smile about knowing how much people love my parents over 25 years after meeting them and that they generously consider me to be family because of Mom & Dad.

I spend a good deal of time at doctors offices, an awesome Chiropractor, a great Rolfer (bodywork) and Walgreens… I had about a month and a half of NOT being sick earlier this summer (was quite literally the best month of my life in the last few years) otherwise I’ve been battling one cold after another followed by a serious bout of the flu and what other virus I can pick up than morphs into a full-out infection (I’ve had strep three times this year already) that renders me useless and sometimes on antibiotics. My Immune system is not responding well to anything and I keep trying new and different things. Many people have something they want me to try or think I should do, often at the end of the day I’m too freaking tired to make myself soup let lone set yet 3 my doctor appointments and phone consults and “try” this new pill (which is always expensive). So while I grateful for all the help sometimes I am just not ready to receive all of it when it involves money and decisions. Most days the everyday little things are about my limit.

Fall is coming quick here in the north and the evenings getting shorter by the day and the nights chilly. But I’m excited for the snow when it gets here, I do love winter. Maybe I’ll snowboard this year!

Good Medicine ~ Joannie

A year ago today & how I got here

This time last year, I’d just gotten out of the pines of New Jersey with best friend Lorien after spending over a week learning a magic that is almost lost, and finding myself in the tracks of animals and the coals of a fire that isn’t touched by modern technology. I was so pumped, so ready to take on this thing called life and get through the weeks ahead with the trial. I knew it would be impossibly hard and awful, but I had something to work on, something to hold on to and share, so I was ready for the darkness — or so I thought. This time last year I had a very nice and comfortable house with my then-boyfriend and some roomies in Knoxville. I had an awesome job, contract horse training, which paid all my bills even though I only worked 4-6 hours a week. It left me the freedom to work on that bartending job I wanted, go to therapy, see my brothers and take the kids out to see movies, work on myself and try to “deal.” I even got to travel that summer and take an amazing class, drive Lorien to the Adirondack Mountains and take a few road trips.  But when I got home from this adventure, it was to a family in great pain with the doomsday of the trial looming, a boyfriend who didn’t want me and was done (even though the worst day of my life was only a week away) and no place I could make myself stay for more than an hour. I packed my stuff and said farewell to the dick of a boyfriend and tried to figure out what the hell I was going to do now. In this unbearable chaos my aunt threw me my lifeline of going to Chicago till the court date. I walked and walked all over downtown, watched people, talked on the phone, sat with the pain I was in, reconnected with an old friend, and even had some fun in the Windy City. I went home to the pain and darkness and promptly lost my mind in grief and confusion over what happened. Another aunt thankfully whisked me away to Bethel, Alaska where I prowled the Tundra and had many sleepless nights, cut off from everyone in the world (no cell service) for a few weeks. I mushed dogs, had a job offer and made some new friends while visiting the Bush.

I flew into Anchorage to see a friend and get a “feel” for what the city was like, and to see if I maybes wanted to try making a life there. My next stop was Seattle with another aunt before heading back to Tennessee to get my beloved River dog, a few more clothes and say a proper goodbye to the kids before I set out to find life. But a job appeared and I got “don’t you dare” and “I believe this a VERY bad idea right now” from my family back in Tennessee. After some intense conversations I decided it was safer to just miss my plane and stay in Anchorage rather than risk not being able to get a flight back and have no job waiting. So I stayed with a little duffel bag of clothes, my computer and one pair of shoes. Homeless, carless and penniless I somehow found places to stay and worked the bus system and the rides I could get from people I’d met to get to work every day, on time or early, but sometimes I just had to walk… I walked and worked my ass off through the winter. I moved around, got kicked out and put out by people. I’d no sooner get access to a car then it would get a flat tire or something random, leaving me to wait on the nice people who would ferry my ass around and walk. I briefly visited the Farm for Christmas, which may or may not have been a good trip but I did get to see my wonderful brothers and sister and say a real goodbye along with stealing my dog back (they had fattened her up) and a few more clothes.

My own car arrived (best gift Dad could ever give me) once Dad had made peace that for better or worse I wasn’t coming back early on in the New Year. The rest I’ve written to some degree on this very blog, but it was today, this time last year, that I came out of the woods with the determination to live and not “get by.” I had made that commitment and a few others to myself – and, unbeknownst to them, my people – that I would live my life in a way that was filled with integrity. That no matter what happened in the following weeks of the trial (and little did I know about losing the entire life I’d made in Knoxville) and darkness that I would make it through. With the chaos in which I was enveloped, I do believe that those promises I made in the woods, only a week before the hit from the boyfriend and friends I thought I had, are what enabled me to continue through. I had so much passion that I can only hope now I somehow didn’t lose after a year of trying but never being quite good enough, smart enough, rich enough or stable enough to have anything besides the clothes on my back, hand outs and my dog whom I fed before myself.

Now, on the day before I lost everything in the city in which I had built my new life, I stand in yet another city  – one as far away as I could get from Knoxville without moving out of the country – with yet another new life. I’ve a job, a car, my dog, a house I rightfully live in with roomies I actually like; I pay my own bills, try to take care of my health and River’s. I think I even have a few real friends in this very city. Somehow, I’ve more today after losing EVERYTHING a year ago. I can only hope I’ve made some impact on others that I meet, and that my brothers and sister don’t hate me for leaving. I miss the horses so much – most days I tell myself I’ve no horses so as to not feel their absence. I left my best friend and most of the family. I walked out on my work and said goodbye to a dream job of training horses.

Tonight I sit here wondering where I’ll be next year, and if I will like it; if my decisions this year will land me in the same spot of just starting over with nothing, as they did last year. I don’t think I could survive another crumbled attempt at life and being left with nothing but dust. Kind of puts some edge to my decisions now. I now know to not build life around anyone (i.e boyfriend, roommates, friends) and not depend on their love or help in any way to get me through the daily things. That is my job, and only mine. I take risks that I normally wouldn’t consider, and don’t let myself get used to anything just in case. I feel that because of this I’ve learnt much, so much. But for everyone who is nodding their heads in ‘I knew it would work out’ and ‘everything happens for a reason’ I wouldn’t wish this path on anyone and if “things had a reason” it sure as hell wasn’t this.

Another song by Within Temptation is the theme to this piece of writing.


 I can’t sleep ‘cause it’s burning deep inside
Like gasoline on fire running wild
No more fear ‘cause I’m getting closer now
So unreal but I like it anyhow

I go faster and faster and faster and faster and faster and faster and faster.

And I can’t live in a fairytale of lies
And I can’t hide from the feeling ‘cause it’s right
And I go faster and faster and faster and faster for life
I can’t live in a fairytale of lies

I can feel that you mesmerize my heart
I feel so free, I’m alive, I’m breaking out
I won’t give in, ‘cause I’m proud of all my scars
And I can see I’ve been wasting too much time

[Pre-chorus and chorus]

I go faster and faster and faster and faster and faster and faster and faster.

And I can’t live in a fairytale of lies
And I can’t hide from the feeling ‘cause it’s right
And I go faster and faster and faster and faster for life
I can’t live in a fairytale of lies

I can feel that you mesmerize my heart
I feel so free, I’m alive, I’m breaking out
I won’t give in, ‘cause I’m proud of all my scars
And I can see I’ve been wasting too much time

A fairytale of lies

[Instrumental break]

 And I can’t live in a fairytale of lies
And I can’t hide from the feeling ‘cause it’s right
And I go faster and faster and faster and faster for life
I can’t live in a fairytale of lies
A fairytale of lies.

I most certainly cannot live in a fairytale of lies, and I just keep after life itself. I’ve found that whether in a crowded city or the vast tundra, I can’t hide from my feelings; and that my scars won’t ever go away, so I might as well be proud that I could live to claim them. Most days I have no idea what I’m feeling, but then I stop and realize that while I might not know what I always feel, at least I can. At least I’ve a life, and at least (I think) I live with some integrity. And that is living.


Quotes & sayings I like enough to share

I’ve always loved Butterflies, not because they are pretty and girly and seem to be “in” right now ~ I’ve always secretly liked them! Also, in the Celtic zodiac my power animal is the Butterfly. So I get more than one meaning with some of these quotes about butterflies ♥

Another butterfly reference and beautifully done!








For everyone that I love and care for, blood relation or no, this sums up my love for all those who have captured it and the means I am more than willing to go for all of you.














Anything with a compelling picture and simple wisdom of compassion and reality, I love! To many of the “dreamers,” as the artists, writers and teachers of the world are called, along with those who dare to dream big in the first place.










So many people ask the meaning of life, search for it, ponder it and seek out possible answers; this is the most simple and to-the-point that you can get in my opinion!





I think this is pretty self explanatory:



A great Irish quote:



Courage and Freedom go hand in hand.