A grassy field spreads open
hemmed by crumbling stone and ancient oaks
gay ribbons streaming in the breeze from the lowest branches
Drums rumble through the night
while the grove gathers around a bonfire
flames leaping into the darkness, chasing it away
Each merry soul carries with them
small bunches of flowers tied in ribbon
a gift for the Queen of May
As the sun sets and the bright moon shows her face
revelers begin spiral dances
celebrations that will last throughout the night
Come morning they will praise the May Queen
seek her blessings of fertility and creativity
around a festooned pole or a blazing fire
But tonight is for revelry
for delighting in the balance of Sun and Moon
for honoring the duality of life
male and female, Goddess and God
for both are needed
in order for humanity to thrive.
December sneaks into the year
lost in the shuffle
of Black Friday
of Small Business Saturday
of Cyber Monday
and all the hoopla that follows.
December comes without warning
and I’m not yet ready
to think of tinsel
of glittering ornaments
and sparkling lights
of ribbons and bows and wrapping.
December settles in
and I’m waiting for the snow
which used to herald
and prepared me for the season
but it hasn’t come.
December won’t wait for me
to catch on
to catch up
to be ready for the holidays
and so I haul out boxes
put up lights and garland
ornaments on trees, candles in windows
and begin to play winter carols.
as my heart opens
illuminated by each sparkling light
each flickering candle
my soul swaddled by familiar strains
surrounding me in holiday cheer.
December always comes
and finds me a Grinch
a sad, solemn Scrooge
who has forgotten the magic I perpetually seek
but it only takes a ritual
enacted each year
to reclaim the twinkle and sparkle
to renew my soul and my heart
embracing Winter’s magic.
More or less inspired by the prompt at Poets United, which asks us to write about a Scrooge. Most years, I start out the season a bit of a Scrooge, but I always find the magic again.
In preparation for winter
she stands, flour dusted, in the heart
of her home.
Tired hands performing
from flour and milk and yeast.
She repeats the motions
(turn, draw in, push out)
order is achieved.
She, and the living slab
rests a moment
she to reflect, it to rise.
Turning to the fire she takes in
and gives form to her regrets.
Committing them to
Each then rests a moment
in her floured fingertips
before falling upon the embers
to be cast into smoke
carried away from her heart.
Looking forward now she shapes harvest loaves
speaking blessings unto the Divine.
“Autumn brings another year to close
and release to regrets and woes.
Draw near those who watch over me
I offer bright blessings to thee.
Danu, Mother Earth
Horned God, Earth Father
I welcome your presence
and thank you for your blessings.
Cerridwen and Cernnunos
Guardians of Nature, of the Crossroads
of Inspiration and Knowledge
I am blessed by your gifts
and invite you to remain at my hearth.
Lugh, Sun King
especially do I thank you
and wish you safe passage in these
your dying nights.
I greet thee all, Great Ones
and set my table with your bounty.”
With this invocation she prepares her feast
begun with bread
the fruit of her labors given form.