On Saturday we were a group of sixteen interesting women. 
We came together to learn about Astrology + Love from master teacher and astrologer Carol Ferris. 
It was a fascinating renewal and I have been thinking a lot about it since ... 
Carol asked each of us to read a quote, poem or story about love by way of introduction. 
Here are a few of these gems:

"Return to Innocence" 
That's not the beginning of the end.
That's the return to yourself.
Love - Devotion - Feeling - Emotion
Love - Devotion - Feeling - Emotion
Don't be afraid to be weak!
Don't be to proud to be strong!
Just look into your heart, my friend,
That will be the return to yourself,
The return to innocence.
If you want, then start to laugh.
If you must, then start to cry.
Be yourself don't hide,
Just believe in destiny.
Don't care what people say,
Just follow your own way.
Don't give up and use the chance
To return to innocence.

Osho quote:  "A woman who loves herself takes the first step towards real love."

"Nobody has ever measured, not even poets, how much the heart can hold."
Zelda Fitzgerald

"If You Forget Me" 
If you forget me
I want you to know one thing.
You know how this is: if I look at the crystal moon,
at the red branch of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch near the fire the impalpable ash or the wrinkled body of the log,
everything carries me to you, as if everything that exists,
aromas, light, metals,
were little boats that sail toward those isles of yours that wait for me. 
Well, now,
if little by little you stop loving me I shall stop loving you little by little. 
If suddenly you forget me do not look for me, 
for I shall already have forgotten you.
If you think it long and mad, the wind of banners that passes through my life,
and you decide to leave me at the shore of the heart where I have roots,
remember that on that day, at that hour,
I shall lift my arms and my roots will set off to seek another land.
But if each day, each hour,
you feel that you are destined for me with implacable sweetness,
if each day a flower climbs up to your lips to seek me,
ah my love, ah my own,
in me all that fire is repeated,
in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,
my love feeds on your love, beloved,
and as long as you live it will be in your arms without leaving mine.
~ Pablo Neruda

“We cultivate love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection.
Love is not something we give or get; it is something that we nurture and grow, a connection that can only be cultivated between two people when it exists within each one of them – we can only love others as much as we love ourselves.
Shame, blame, disrespect, betrayal, and the withholding of affection damage the roots from which love grows. Love can only survive these injuries if they are acknowledged, healed and rare.”
Brene Brown

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.”
~ Maya Angelou

"The Nearness That Is All" 
Love's what Shakespeare never
   said by saying, "You have 
   bereft me of all words, lady."
Love is the man who siphoned 
   phlegm from his ill wife's throat
   three times a day for seven 
      Love's what the Arabs 
   mean when they bless those
   with children: "May God keep them 
   for you."
         Or why a mother
   whispers to her suckling, "May you 
   bury me."
            Love's how the ten-year
   widow speaks of her buried
   husband in the present tense.
Love lets the man with one leg 
   and seven children envy no man
   living and none dead.
   leaves no one alone but, oh,
   lonely, lonelier, loneliest
   at midnight in another country.
Love is jealousy's mother
   and father.
            Love's how death
   creates a different nearness
   but kills nothing.
   makes lovers rise from each
   loving wanting more.
   says impossibility's possible
            Love saddens glad 
   days for no bad reason.
Love gladdens sad days
   for no good reason.
   mocks equivalence.
                           Love is.
Samuel Hazo

"Love Hurts"
~ Nazareth

"Love After Love"
The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other's welcome,
And say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was yourself.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.
Derek Walcott

"Love is the only sane and satisfactory answer to the problem of human."
Erich Fromm

"Ode 314"
Those who don't feel this Love
pulling them like a river,
those who don't drink dawn
like a cup of spring water
or take in sunset like supper,
those who don't want to change,
 let them sleep.
 This Love is beyond the study of theology,
that old trickery and hypocrisy.
If you want to improve your mind that way,
 sleep on.
 I've given up on my brain.
I've torn the cloth to shreds
and thrown it away.
 If you're not completely naked,
wrap your beautiful robe of words
around you,
 and sleep.
~ Rumi

"Love is just a four-letter word."
Bob Dylan