Dangerous Compassions

riverbed buddies

riverbed buddies

Usually my good friend Ariel and I talk via technology.  We txt and polo often!  With some emails, shared googledocs, and social media for good measure.  When we get together, we usually just talk.  There may be food, embroidery, tarot.  But I thought it might be fun to go to my favorite riverbed with her and become riverbed buddies.

Yes, it was fun!  A legit outing and shared experience.  Before we went to the art gallery Recycled Propaganda!  That was fun.  And we tried to go to a farm right before Halloween, but it was closed on account of rain.  That Russian restaurant was cool.

riverbed buddies

Trying out being riverbed buddies, Ariel did embroider.  We walked a little ways down the trail.  Found our spot–she was in the shade.

riverbed buddies

I mostly sat and lay in the sun, resting and praying a little in my head.  And we had great conversation.

There were no clouds to be seen in the sky.  Some highlights were seeing a goat shape in a joshua tree, when Ariel touched a pencil cholla and I freaked out, and just being her passenger as she drove skillfully.

wild hair

The very highlight was when she was telling me her embroidery thread is too big for some tiny embroidery she’s doing: stitch journaling.  She knew embroidery thread would be too thick for the legs of the ant she wanted to embroider.

“Maybe you could use a hair from your head,” I suggested.

“Wow, what a cool idea,” she said.  “Probably there’s hair in my pony tail holder.”  To my surprise, she tried.  But the hair broke.

“You could try one of my hairs,” I suggested.  “Mine might be stronger.”  My hair has never been dyed.

So she did!  I gave her a hair from my head, and she was able to embroider the legs of her ant.  The ant is very small.  So cute!  I love ants, so it’s extra special.


I made jokes such as, “I love your art, and it’s good to be part of it!”  Amazing that my bodily material is useful in her embroidery creation.

king of pentacles

We talked about the king of pentacles.  I think most people are really into money, but I don’t have to be like that.  For me, pentacles are much less about money.  They can be about nature, stability, groundness, Mother Earth, what’s trustworthy, embodiment.

“I struggle with materiality,” I told Ariel.

“What do you mean by that?” she asked.

“Sometimes with my writing or art, I just want to stay in my inner world.  I can be really focused on a project and resent needing to stop working on it to eat a meal–I don’t want to pull myself out of it.  Taking a shower can feel really hard for me,” I said.

Felt good to explain all this to her.  I continued: “I’m like–god, why do I have to do all this physical stuff.  I’d rather just fly around and be a spirit.  But then I tell myself–I’m here as an animal to do animal things.  It’s not time to be a spirit right now.”

rhino earrings

I made my friend these simple rhino earrings with dark purple beads.

rhino earrings

I gave them to her in the morning, in front of our house when she came over to pick me up.  She put them on right away.  They seemed great on her.  They might be kings of pentacles.  Yes, solid and real.


The friendship Ariel and I share is mostly ethereal and part of our inner worlds, through technology.  So it makes sense to have a king of pentacles time together, embodied in a riverbed, as riverbed buddies.

Some people thought it would be wet in the riverbed.  No, the river is not at home right now.  It comes after a big rain or maybe tons of snowmelt.

If the river is not here, the riverbed might want visitors in it.  We could be extra welcome.  River is one of my names for a reason.  I’m mostly water.


Please consider joining the friendship art along that Ariel and I do.  Here’s our instagram.

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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