Message from the Muse

What I Did On My Total Solar Eclipse

‘Don’t ask yourself what the world needs;
ask yourself what makes you come alive.
And then go and do that. Because what the
world needs is people who have come alive.’ 
—Harold Whitman

Wake-Up Call from Venus

Thursday morning, 9/13

Mandala, from a magnolia leaf I found on the lawn.

I woke up uncommonly early last Thursday. With the happy thought in my mind: “I’m rich!”

Just to be clear: This has not been my usual first thought upon waking. And, the thought came with a bonus mantra:

I’m rich!
I’m rich!
I just came into a large sum of money

I’m rich!
I’m rich!
I just came into a large sum of money

I had been reading in The Oracle Report and elsewhere that we should be receiving messages on Tuesday or Wednesday that would bring clarity to what we’d been experiencing in the aftermath of the August 21 total solar eclipse.

I was eager to get this message. Because for all of the promise of the Leo eclipse, the next three weeks felt more like a protracted ending than a new beginning. Going into the eclipse, I had felt so much enthusiasm about where things were going. I was hatching plans, writing furiously, making music….

And then somebody pulled the plug.

I felt listless, hypersensitive, apathetic. My digestion was sluggish. I was having trouble breathing and feeling lightheaded and tired. I could sense that deep changes were happening internally, but I couldn’t put my finger on what they were.

So, to say this message was a surprise would be putting it mildly.

I had gone to sleep thinking about Venus making an exact conjunction with the North Node a few degrees from my natal Ascendant. After basking in my newfound wealth for a few minutes and singing my mantra in my head, it occurred to me to check the astrology for the moment I woke up.

I cast a chart for 5:06 a.m. local time and wouldn’t you know? There was Venus, just about to slip above the horizon!

Venus rising, conjunct the North Node.

Being awakened at 5 a.m. means I got fewer than five hours sleep. Which would normally have me feeling pretty grouchy. But c’mon! When the Goddess of Love and Beauty and Art (and some say money) Herself is the one giving me the wake-up call?

You bet I was feeling juiced. Especially after what had happened the night before.

Wednesday afternoon, June 13

It was one of the down days so many of us have been experiencing even more acutely on the post-eclipse roller coaster ride. I was milling around the office when I saw Liz Gilbert’s Big Magic, which had been sitting unopened right next to my computer for the previous three weeks. I opened it to the page where she writes about the importance of defining yourself as a creative person, rather than giving in to the voices that tell you that you suck, and that you’re too tired or too busy to do what you love. Gilbert writes:

Speak it. Let it know you’re there. Hell, let you know you’re there – because this statement of intent is just as much an announcement to yourself as it is an announcement to the universe or anybody else. Hearing this announcement, your soul will mobilize accordingly. It will mobilize ecstatically, in fact, because this is what your soul was born for. (Trust me, your soul has been waiting for you to wake up to your own existence for years.)

I remember a quiet voice telling me, “This is it.”

This voice was immediately answered by a more strident voice saying, “You’ve read that before. Don’t act like this is news.”

(In other words, this can’t be your message. Your ‘real’ message will be something totally new, shocking, and unheard of that knocks your socks off and sends you into a frenzy of ecstatic activity.)

Wednesday evening, June 13

Later that evening I took a long walk around the neighborhood to clear my mind and get my energy moving. I had been planning to head out to the store after my walk to see if any bottled water had made it to the shelves now that the remnants of Hurricane Irma had passed over.

I was feeling a little breathless after my walk, though. (Since the eclipse, I’ve been experiencing intermittent trouble drawing a full breath. I suffered from allergy-induced asthma when I was younger and this feels different; more like bodily anxiety that restricts my ability to breathe than the choking feeling of childhood asthma.)

I stretched and changed clothes and then I decided to draw a card from the William Blake Tarot of the Creative Imagination before going out: What’s my best attitude or action for tonight?

Imagination – Triumph 9 of the Blake Tarot.

I drew the Imagination card. And, in the moment of looking at the card, I suddenly felt too weak to even consider leaving the house.

I lay down on my yoga mat on the cement floor of my basement studio, which seems to be the best way to get my breath back when these episodes come on. (The mosquitoes have been off the charts this summer; otherwise I’d lie out on the lawn.)

I went into my inner world to talk with my Inner Guide and then I must have drifted off to sleep. When I awoke an hour later, I felt groggy and stiff. But I was breathing clearly again. As I staggered to my feet I became aware of a melody I didn’t recognize, circling through my mind.

I went over to my desk, fired up my audio rig and Ableton Live, and was about record me singing and playing the melody (making a song as the vehicle for a late-night cruise with Imagination) — when my wife came downstairs.

– What are you doing? she asked.

– I’m meditating on things, I said. Did you need something?

– Oh, she said. Do you want me to leave?

– You can stay for a few minutes, I said. What do you want to talk about?

– I guess I’ll just go to bed then, she said, obviously nonplussed.

– OK, I said.

Even a year ago, that interaction would have left me clenched into a little ball of shame and angst. She needed me and I turned her away. Now I’ll be abandoned. Soon She will punish me. She is full of grief and anger and despair: I must help her by taking some of that into my Self. That is my duty.¹

No music would have been made that night, only more sorrow.

Clearing Old Patterns

One of the major functions of the total solar eclipse seems to be the clearing of old patterns that keep us from living as our essential selves – our God-selves.

I witnessed the old programs flashing through my mind. But after a flicker of self-doubt, I felt absolutely clear on what I needed to do.

The Muse had given me a melody; I would lose the melody if I didn’t use it. My wife didn’t need my attention at that moment. She was just bored and wanted to chat before bedtime.

I shook off the old shame feelings and picked up my guitar. And spent the next two hours joyfully immersed in eternity with the Muse.

You might have guessed that She isn’t my wife. But who is this woman who has controlled me for half a lifetime?

(To be continued…)


I made a cool little ambient looper track from the Muse’s melody. Improvised on the spot with acoustic guitar, voice and a couple of drum clips:

6 thoughts on “Message from the Muse

  1. Jessica Radcliffe says:

    Listless, sloggy, omg go to sleep. And yet getting things done, actually. Had to literally throw someone out of my house last week. Cops. Neighbors. I was shaking like a little leaf. Annoyed , upset and bored. Unsure.But getting a lot of stuff pretty whimsical stuff made for Xmas mkts. Jeez. Lying down every couple of hours. Lonely, wtf.

    • DK Brainard says:

      You’re probably getting a stronger dose of ‘the medicine’ than most, eh? Being as the eclipse was dead opposite your Sun. I hear you with the ups and downs. Also sleep had been, until two nights ago, elusive and unsatisfying. I couldn’t even get a statifyjng nap in. Hell for a Pisces.

    • DK Brainard says:

      ❤️ JJ

      I know, right? It has taken me a week to put that sequence of events into something resembling chronological order. It was so intense. Being in the presence of the Goddess herself. Interspersed with periods of feeling totally drained and just crushed. But I hung in there and I’m still euphoric about it.

  2. Fran says:

    Beautiful, DK. Glad you didn’t let “Her” stop you from recording this. Well Done:)
    Clearing old patterns – YUP. Trying to stay Present, In My Body, best I can, & let it all burn off, leave, transmute. Then comes GRACE…. Wash rinse repeat.
    Solar winds been blowing like crazy last week or so, finally quieted down. I swear I feel them in my body. Electrical, uncomfortable, exhausting, sometimes uplifting at the same time.
    “Everything is everything.” Bruce Springsteen

    • DK Brainard says:

      Thank you Fran! I so know what you Jean with the solar winds. I felt them calm down too a few days ago. And agreed: try to stay present, participate in letting go of the old gunk they are trying to blow out of us. ❤️❤️

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