things exactly as they are

beach - r.kennedy

i am home from a night in a small black box theatre that sits at the back of a big red brick building. i watched a tall man play an even taller bass, and breathe music to a group of people that numbered only as many fingers as are on my one hand.
our minuscule audience learned each others names and the songs filled the space as though it was a packed room 5 times it’s size.
my life is filled with a lot of live music and i hold a deep reverence for the art. but every once and a while i get the chance to witness something really special unfold. tonight was one of those times.
Oliver Swain played his voice for the crazy instrument that it is, and embraced that upright bass like a lover. it was gorgeous to watch, and equally beautiful to listen to. it will reverberate in me for a long long time.

when gorgeous moments happen something in me craves to have people there to share it with. i want someone else to see that sunrise too. i want more people to hear the howl and yip of the coyotes as i fall asleep. i want people i love to understand how incredible it feels to stand in that spot on that beach on the shore of that ocean. i want a full room of eyes and ears to take in the sweet music that’s being created. 

but…i’m also learning to stop wishing that something was different and just fully embrace the way things are.
i am trying to practice being fully aware of MY own presence in those moments.
i am a witness. a participant. maybe that is enough.

Oliver deserved a full house tonight. his art and his talent are worth it all. but there was also something absolutely perfect about us 5 random listeners sprinkled around the tiny room. the beauty was performed whether or not a crowd was there to witness. the art was made with skill and heart despite a near empty room.
the experience left me feeling incredibly full.

sitting in that darkened room i found myself forgetting that anyone else mattered at all. i was just there, feeling grateful and inspired.

i drove away and came home to an empty space, all that energy burning inside me. you weren’t there to feel what i felt. but you’re here now, and the least i could do, the best i can do, is try to tell you about it.

pile it up, let it go

1. farm fields at sunset with four-leggeds and best friends. doesn’t get much better than that.

2. re-arranging furniture…again.there are always possibilities, even in the smallest space. never ceases to delight me. is there a career in that?

3. listening to some Andrew James O’Brien. yup.

4. how does a small life aquire so many things?

5. the birds are singing in your eyes today

6. Lemon Blueberry Cornmeal muffins still hot from the oven. making this rainy night smell so good.

7. i can’t wait till i get to eat more of this:

8. i have shelves full of books that i’ve never read. i’ve moved them in boxes from one house to the next. i like the way they look. the way they feel. i like the idea of them. but they’re strangers to me still. stories i’ve never met. just covers or titles or writers i thought i might like or want or read.
enough already, rae.
read them or let them go.

9. love.

10. this season of newness really is a wonder.

snow day

1. mint hot chocolate.
2. parka and track pants and a shovel.
3. Lisa Congdon’s colourful illustrations and good words.

lisa congdon

lisa congdon

4. loving my wintery treetop attic view
5. empty suitcase and a pile of clothes.
6. Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. it just works for me. you know?
7. finally got around to reading and finishing Blankets. not sure what i’d expected but i don’t think that was it.
blankets by Craig Thompson

blankets by Craig Thompson

8. “the scared is scared of the things we like”
9. the gift of unexpected hours.
10. a favorite by one of my favorites:

in not so many words.

this weekend held a lot of things, including two felting workshops, one little girl’s art making birthday party, a whole lot of baking, one cold on the mend, one missed Julie Doiron concert, and not enough sleep.

the stereo played a lot of beyonce (yes, that’s right) and Lucius, oh and Grace because this song never stops being beautiful,and even, um, some of this… because that’s just what you gotta do sometimes, you know?

there were some good reminders given, like:
1. fresh snowfalls under mid-winter night skies are worth bundling up for.
2. hot soup is one of life’s finest offerings.
3. sleep changes everything.
4. art making is good. plain and simple.
5. kitchens were made for dancing.

took a few pictures to prove it all happened. little Claire photo-documented the art birthday party at the Gallery, so credit for the “eyes of a 6 year old awesome shots” go to her.











sitting here, on the far side of it all, i’m tired as, but i’m also ridiculously grateful. this life is a good life. even when it’s hard, it’s good. remember that, rae.

Lhasa de Sela

“The world doesn’t adjust itself to the soul: the beauty, the magic of the soul is what I want to bring out. My job is to do it my way.” – Lhasa de Sela

Photo Credit: Jérôme Lapierre

Photo Credit: Jérôme Lapierre

Give yourself a beautiful gift and just listen.


(Lhasa de Sela quote c/o the black ewe )

blink and they’re gone

one hell of a year, in retrospect.
































and a million other moments in between.

so grateful.
so humbled.
so blessed.

(all photos c/o me, except the one of The Boss rockin’ out…that one is courtesy of The Globe and Mail. i was too busy dancin’ in the dark to snap a photo…smile.)

art of a common kind

listening to this while making clay on another oh-so-rainy day.

things that make the heart beat fast

3 reasons to listen to this song non stop today

1. it’s Bon Jovi. that’s all the reason anyone ever needs. mmmhmmmmmmm.
2. approximately 12 years ago i was living for a few months in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. which is right around the time this song came out. MTV India was often on the television in the house i was living in, and this song was in constant rotation. so, strangely enough, every time i hear this particular Jon Bon song, i immediately think of the beauty and craziness of those months many miles from home. it’s a curiously perfect fit.
3. in a few short hours my brother is going to warm up the stage for Jon and the boys in Quebec City. i can hardly believe it. two of my favorite tight-pant wearing rock stars on one stage in one night. i am a proud sister no matter what, but i’m busting at the seams with excitement for the RIKERS boys right now.

oh for the love of big hair and electric guitars, sometimes life is just real good, isn’t it?

lazy sunday breakdown pt.1

Michael Kiwanuka
strata with arugula and parmesan and a side of greens
slow rising
whirr of fans
bruce-the-dog’s warm breath on my toes
the comfort of gentle words and hearts that love
good morning, sunshine.

somewhere in the night

it’s far too late to be awake still
but my bum foot and bum-foot-hopefully-healing-medicines
have a wakefulness side effect. combo that with the late afternoon nap i had,
and it makes for one open eyed bird at this late hour of the night.

what do i do with myself?

i’m double fisting books right now but neither one is really holding my attention. i pulled out of face-book land a long while ago, so i can’t go creeping around there. my only bulletin board hangs on my wall, and the online ones of others leave me swimming in some cocktail sea of inspiration/overkill/envy/self-doubt/pleasure…always swamping me in the end with plain old overwhelmed.
i tried the middle-of-the-night shower (sorry downstairs neighbour).
i researched poisonous plants.
i wandered through blog land.
i youtubed bill withers.
i read some poems.

earlier in the night i took my dog for a drive.
i know…dogs much prefer walks. but this whole bum foot business makes walking to the kitchen a chore, let alone walking around a few city blocks with a big-hairy-squirrel-chasing-beast-on-a-leash…so i opted for a drive to the country instead. i once read that taking your dog out in the early evening is like the equivalent of a sensory orgasm for your pet. the air at that hour (so i read) is so thick with the scents of the day, that they just go wild in the best possible way. so i loaded the old guy in the car, opened the sun roof, rolled down the windows, and took us both out for a good time. it was great. he hung his head out the window and stuck his nose in the air…we listened to jazz on the radio…we watched the sun start to set over farm fields…

hello friday night.

i’m not sure if there’s a point to this post. i just felt like writing, and, well, quite frankly around here, that’s all the reason i need to have. i used to be driven to write words all the time. when i was younger i couldn’t feed paper through my typewriter fast enough. i filled spiral bound notebooks like they were going out of style. but now i have to work the muscle a lot harder to get the words to come out.
i need to exercise intention. i need to follow the impulse. i need to make myself sit down and write.

so it’s 2am and i’m writing improper sentences without using capitals, and i’m telling you about body malaise and you tube videos and evening drives with my dog.

and when i started this post there was a moth fluttering around my lamp, doing what moths do, trying to get close to the light. i just noticed that the fluttering has stopped. even the moth has gone to sleep.

i will turn off the lamp now.
i think i’ve done enough.
the body will heal.
words that need saying will come.
we’ll all keep moving toward the light.

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Words + Photos + Credit

Unless otherwise noted, all original photography and text are property of Raechelle Kennedy. If you see or read something here and feel inspired to share it somehow, please be considerate and give the artist (me!) credit, or even better, drop me a note and make sure I don’t mind.
Thank you!

Here + There

Secondhand Sainthood and the gift of losing it all – Topology Magazine, December 2015

Ten Things Made – Topology Magazine, December 2015