Rites of Spring Equinox Amidst the Exhaustion

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03/20/2017 by syrbal-labrys

I’ve been humming that bit from “Camelot” about the “lusty month of May” and substituting the phrase “springing month of March”….and the weeds in the gardens DO seem lusty.  But with both my knees killing me, and my neck singing back-up tunes to the knees?  I’m not feeling it.  One son, the Manchild, is laid up in back agony; the younger, Raptor, is depressed over Manchild’s imminent defection to Eastern Washington for love of a sweetheart.  Our newcomer, the Marine “Viking” is stressed to hell out over various sorts of assholery going on in his life.  The Minotaur went to get cat food and a coffee maker so life can go on in those areas of our reality.

Today is the Vernal Equinox.  ‘Tis one of two days I “feed” the 13 stones that are the symbolic ring of protection round my home and property.  Yes, I live in a magical circle of  my own creation.  When I told my children I could no longer keep up the appearances of Christianity, even in the confines of a socially active Jesuit parish; I asked them a question.
“Which old gods of legend would you like to worship/celebrate, if we were not trying to keep to the paradigm of monotheism.”

Thus was born our first circle.  We placed and named small boulders — nine of them that first year.  We added four more later.  At the Equinoxes, I go out and spend a bit of meditation time at each stone. Sometimes I light incense, sometimes candles.  It is a few stolen moments from the hectic, crazy pace to contemplate meaning and intention in my life.  

Do those old pagan deities exist?  Do they hear me talking to them/myself about fears, hopes, needs, and focus?  I don’t know.  Sometimes they feel as real as the smell of trash burning in the neighbor’s yard and as palpable as my lungs slamming me into asthma.  Other times, there is this sensation of void and emptiness – of a hollow large enough to swallow the world.

Also, on the Equinox, if the weather is done with serious freezing misery, I go to the Hexenhaus and take twelve pounds of beads down off their winter-hooks.  I walk my way to the Labyrinth center, singing and imagining the carrying of all those too-young bodies to helicopters in body bags, off planes in caskets, into and out of family churches and to grave yards (every one?!) and place the bead counters back onto the central stone. I pour pure water on them, saying “May your every thirst be satisfied.”  I splash water on the opening stone, upon the stone altar and scoot back inside before my lungs rebel again.

I start laundry.  I plan the rest of the day.  I pull a few weeds on my way to the trash can.   Before month’s end, the young wife of the Viking will join us in her hurriedly appointed “nest” in the one-time garage.  We will continue.  We will sign petitions and go to meetings.  We will give money to causes when we can.  We will support each other, nourish each other, worry for each other.  What did I ask for thirteen times this morning, pouring beer or mead, or wine?  Courage, strength to go on, knowledge of how to keep my family safe.  May you find the same.


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The name of this blog, and my Dreamwidth blog, Herlander Refugee, is taken from a 1915 feminist novel "Herland". It makes my heart sing that modern women are experimenting with creation of a new "Herland"! Yes, comments are closed. Anyone who just MUST reach me can do so at syrbal6 at gmail dot com.

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