It pleases me greatly to share my writing with the world alongside my singing. Like many of you, I’ve filled countless journals with my experiences of living and loving large.
I’ve written poems and dabbled with song lyrics mostly just for me and just for fun. As a singer, I frequently translate the words of the world’s lyricists and poets back and forth between English and German. Striving to maintain the original meaning while coming up with a sing-able rhyme scheme has been excellent practice for me in finding my own voice as a writer through the music that lives in the words themselves.
I chose the hawk as the guardian of these writing pages. One first appeared to me in Austin in 1997 around the time of the tragic death of a friend, providing solace and perspective. Twenty years later, as I dealt with a near-death experience of my own, the hawk re-emerged in my life as a guardian and gatekeeper. My spirit animal makes many appearances throughout this site with its feather doubling as a quill.
The act of writing by hand is a source of deep pleasure for me and I have my favorite pen and paper. I hope that we humans preserve and pass on this intimate form of self-discovery and key to engagement, even as our digital keys take us ever closer to the stars.
For 15 years, we’ve had a symbiotic and gratifying working relationship
where much is intuitively understood and communicated.
Our story could end there, but it doesn’t for our roots run deep and our muse is complex.
Behind her mask of wickedness, she is tender-hearted and has blessed us
with more than a connection that ends with a curtain, a bow and a pat on the back.
She’s gifted us a kinship, for life.
We are foreigners and this town has been a cherished second home that calls us back
whenever we venture far afield, as any place does where one has truly arrived in one’s own skin.
We have this understanding, you and I. Our Family Born is far away.
Yet something deeper connects us and you gave it a name.
You, one day, called me Mutti, Mom in German.
Beyond the music and the friendship, it was your idea to bring that level of commitment and reverence.
With this gesture, you touched a universal, for who among us has not been gifted a father figure,
a mother, sister, brother, son, daughter, a soulmate of sorts where none existed before.
Life with an artist is not an easy path. Just as the artist was always in you, knows the way
and flourishes in the light of a witness, so the husband is already in you and knows the way.
Our role is to watch and bear witness.
My song will not be your song and our marriage will not be your marriage.
But they are, I believe, two branches of the same flowering tree, fed by the same spring
and growing toward the same break in the wild canopy above us.
Some say the times are dark and fearful. What a perfect moment then to give
a resounding YES to this chance, this adventure, this merging and emerging
in this precise year in both of your lives. For the Light, and for the Courage.
Thank you for bringing us all together. We are your Family Found
and as you widen your circle today through your vows, you widen ours.
So steady the ship, Captain. You are born for this role, and we, the ageless children eternally at play,
need you and those like you to hold up the mirror to us and our creativity.
For without you, I daresay, we’re a little bit lost to ourselves.
~ Karen Kohler
* From a homily written for Kim and Matt on the occasion of their nuptials in the summer of 2022