Be the warmth you desire, or something like that.


“HATE” is a strong word. I rarely use it, although today as I get older, “I HATE being cold.”
It’s alright to say it’s “DAMN COLD HERE!”

The snowy months have a strange way of painting a picture of your life, past present and future.

The hyperborean times gives you a sense of yourself that nothing else can give you, FEAR, POVERTY, DOUBT, HUNGER, LOST, ETC…

Just go outside and feel it, truly feel it, sit in a cold house, walk in the snow for an hour without a coat, step into the ice world without shoes, field dress in two feet of snow as the sun sets, sleep on hard, frigid ground, dance naked, dig a grave.

Two things happen and both those things will be fired up by some kind of emotional tangent,
1. Run back in and say this is stupid!
2. Or you will receive the gift, however it’s not gonna be without some kind of tangent, whatever comes about these will have to be brought on by some mental emotional quandary. The cold doesn’t mess around.

Since I’ve been home for a spell my body has been a bit frazzled and not as strong, I used to say, “the cold gives you a name, YOU ARE OLD…” haha yes getting there and the bleak does give you that name.

In between my warm blankets I imagine myself on some boat miles off shore, 10 foot waves, alone in a squall of sleet. Or I think about being a child in some cold war torn city, barely enough wood to survive, breaking oak chairs, and floor boards huddled around a fire place, or being born 243 years ago where it was natural to live without insulation, central heating, Sorels, socks or even gloves.

I also used to say that in those times, “In the times when the earth was still angry with birth, the polar-winds were considered an enemy.”

I often tell people, “stay warm.”

My opinion, I figure those words in an inhospitable world are by far the biggest love-send, consideration, warning and inspiring thing to say to anyone, seek warmth, be warmth, live warmth, with warmth you will share and live a life spreading warmth.

Did I say I hate being frosty, however I can handle it if it slaps me around.

Early evening after a long day of shoveling too much snow, I’m sitting inside the village house, waiting for the fire place to finally do what it’s supposed to do. I Peep out through the door.

I could still feel my skin, my bones, muscles, the pueblo world numbing outside, I stoked up the fire, it’s going to be an arctic stinging wintery night, a big Cheyenne girl type of night.

On the east bridge I saw an aged man leaning into the northerner winds as snow fell dark outside, his white blanket blowing, he made me curious, what was he doing here, on the Glacial looking bridge, shivering his frail skin.

I decided even though I was frozen to see what he was doing. I drudged across the village as the looming, brumal village watched.

I asked the old man, what are you doing here?

HE, the man was not an old man, however IT was a HER, a spirit, a frozen entity, a ghost of the winter.

I stepped away quickly as she stared into my eyes, piercing blueish grey eyes cold as arctic.

I spoke looking back at the smoke coming from my smoke stack, stepping back, “this place, this village is not yours it’s mine, your world is where lies the dark trees of pine, the frosty cliff sides where water lives.”

Without words, she turned to me silence dead as a grave, only the wind as my tone got higher in my numbed throat.

“I asked you to leave our home, my land

You were never sent any invitation.”

The raw Intense spirit floated a little above the bridge, much more hazy as night fell, the wind subsided she turned to me but the biting silence was all that was heard.

She looked me in my eye’s eyes, sad as shivery loneliness and she spoke, ” many years ago I was born here, in this village. I used to hear the young men sing songs on this bridge, my time is done I wanted to see if they still sing here, you are young still have plenty of time to learn the songs. Rise early like the sun or like a stone in water you culture will sink.”

As she disappeared into the cottonwoods I heard, “sing the songs sing my song, even in winter a song can warm the soul…”

Carl Moon Painting, “home from the hunt”

Sitting in your warm house, looking out the window, think the world is cold outside?

Sit with me awhile, sing me into your soul, then you will know it’s always the cold inside you that sent the invitation.


22 thoughts on “Be the warmth you desire, or something like that.”


    Prayers and Blessings for everyone who reads this. Prayers and blessings for you, your girls, your mom, your siblings, the tribe, and people not of the tribe. Prayers and blessings for the animals, Mother Earth, Father Sky, and Grandmother Moon.

    Thank you for sharing this story. When I was running low on firewood to when I could afford more, the house where I stay was cold. (the propane and electric space heaters don’t make up for firewood) Luckily a neighbor loaned a log splitter since I don’t have a wedge and a maul, and the wood was too frozen for me or my strongest roommate to split with the axe.

    This winter is cold.. Last winter it warmed up about 50 degrees and trees and grass started growing before winter was over. It caused many fruit trees to bloom early then have their blooms frozen.

    I also rarely use the word “hate”, and I find when that word does find it’s way to my lips, I usually do not mean it. Even for those who would say they hate me, I find compassion knowing that they must be going through something terrible, and I pray that they can learn to see the world in a more loving way.

    I have spent some time in the cold where I was not dressed as warmly as I should have. I understand how you feel about cold. I have also told people to stay warm this winter. (Especially a friend of mine who needs her wheelchair, and drives it instead of a car.)

    may everyone find the warmth that they need,

  2. Loved, loved this one, Robert. “Stay warm” … what a simple and beautiful way to say “I care about you, I love you.” And… “Be the warmth you desire.” Wow… What a challenge. There is so much that I want to say… Got to get my thoughts together. We are all out here ‘in the cold’ together. We must all be sources of warmth for each other. You, my friend, are a beautiful warm fireplace.

  3. When you belong… you don’t need an invitation… and… hahaha…. the message outweighs invite. :)… across time and space the heart listens…songs connecting folks… some magical stuff. 🙂 So rich how everyone comes, reads and shares how they belong to the words. yep,, magical!

  4. Be warm Mirabal-Man,

    The still morning
    Glistening white covering everything in sight
    Staring out my fog filled window
    My mind wonders
    It sends a shiver down my spine
    Just thinking how cold it must be
    It calls to me
    The silence, the moment of absolute stillness
    When everything is frozen in time
    Even I am in that moment
    Warmth fills my heart with undeniable love and joy
    It wanders throughout my whole body
    Reminding me that I am alive

    Warmth to you and everyone! Sing me a song!

  5. I lived most of my life between the North Shore of Lake Superior and the border with Canada. I remember one day of felling trees most of the day when the temperature, NOT the windchill was 62 degrees below zero. I have fished, hunted and played in the cold often and I know how the cold can worm its way deep into your body and it is hard to drive it back out.
    One day many years later I visited Florida. One my next visit I bought a one way ticket.
    Keep warm my friend.

  6. I’m glad there are still song singers.
    I’m glad you sing.
    Thank you for singing your song.
    Stay warm.

  7. I too, HATE the cold. It’s painful and relentless. It stabs through your body like pain of a love you thought would last forever and becomes non-existent because of old age and like COLD is unforgiving. Cold makes one feel old, cold is lonely. Today I am cold, very cold and very lonely because my love is forgetting that he once loved me. He’s forgetting how to live but he still knows, HE TOO HATES THE COLD.

    Be well Robert. You are always in my heart and thoughts of happy times when music spreads love and warms the heart and soul.

    Your Florida friend,

  8. Be warm, my partner in hating to be frosty!

    I always like to think about the duality of snow and ice – so beautiful, yet so deadly. Those icicles hanging off my roof are so pretty. But when I slip on the back steps from that same ice and fall flat on my ass…ehhh, it kind of looses it’s magic!

  9. I was born and raised in the land of the frozen tundra…but once I found my way to New Mexico in February of 1998 I knew it was going to be my home. I too now hate being cold or frosty….if the sun is out I can take it a lot easier but I often find myself in many layers just to be comfortable. People say I should be used to it but this old body has forgotten the times of below zero with a wind chill of hell just froze over….

    stay warm…be safe….wear fleece…

  10. Was in Santa Fe last night, very cold. I am minding the cold this year . getting old I guess. Will try and tap into the fire within. Thanks for the suggestions.

  11. Robert, you will bring warmth to the Rio Grande Theatre tomorrow night with your songs, dancing, and poetry. I look forward to greeting you after the concert. It seems like yesterday you first came to the Rio Grande in November of 2007.

    Peace and Love, Wayne

  12. Man, Mirabal, Warm May you Be

    Yes, again me, again this warmth cold duality, and a memory of walking barefoot in the snow as I woke up once in my favorite place that had turned from a green to white sea…
    And as I remember the intense cold bites feeling like tiny flames under my feet, I also notice that sometimes it’s ok to say we “hate” a few things, especially when, looking at the word again and seeing it from a different perspective, we turn “Hate” into “Heat”-
    Because even though the frozen stillness of silence fills me with warmth, I too hate being cold, as in feeling cold, and also sounding cold when I don’t want to…
    (A few thoughts for this cold afternoon)
    So just in case, let me repeat again, stay warm and sing me a song by the fireplace when I’m / you’re / we’re back home, as in this beautiful Moon’s painting…

  13. You will be in warm place tomorrow, Robert — Las Cruces. Peace be with you and enjoy your trip down to sun country from the cold snow country of Taos. Ken

  14. Perhaps the invitation was on the form of a link from the past. All at once altogether no beginning no end: world with out end.. with artic eyes I sing a song to warm the soul. I sing a song to share common ground. I sing a song to warm my soul like hands in front of a fire on a photo that touches two souls. The souk it travels to where it is called “a souk tracker” one teacher to leap through time to heal forward and backward in time. No ghost. She is as real and she too wishes warmth and fir two souls to come in from the cold. Released from all that separates until there is only love.

  15. Thank you. Tobreceive the words is itself a gift as was the song, the lyrics the reminder that our thoughts carry us like the wings of an angel swooping down for safe delivery. May the swoop down now and wrap around keeping you warm, safe, and protected from insecurities and fear. You are powerful beyond your imagination.

  16. Hey Robert,
    A good cup of chai sounds perfect right about now. Hands cupped around the warm bowl. Eyes closed, breathing in the spices, mmm, mmm! One way to chase away the cold. Sipping it slowly as you ponder fond memories, wrapped in your favorite blanket as if in chrysalis. Momentarily you are transformed and take flight. Your wings are stronger than you think and your songs even more beautiful.
    Have many cups of chai and stay warm!
    PEACEFUL MOMENTS are yours!

  17. Your wonderful performance in Las Cruces , the music, the beautiful flutes, those lovely daughters..and the dance!..all so special…but your message, your gift of heart and honor was a true blessing for everyone there.Your aknowlegement of the Vietnam vet was so dear and thoughtful…thank you for that and for sharing your spirit with all of us. We are richer for the opportunity to experience of your purpose.

  18. cold really makes the emotions raw, and it seems to be a time of reflection and slowing down and meeting our self, after that wild ride of summer
    I really loved this one , so true to tell someone to stay warm, its expresses a type of care and concern

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