Poem for Brigid

For Brigid

My feet still in the well, cool shock of yesterday,
I look to the candle, let open my head, my heart,
My hands, then begin. It is years since I first
Reached out (hesitant? hubristical? hopeful
I hope, and certainly teetered between
Extremes), and the worn steps still lead down
Into cool clearness, scent of moss and old
Stone and clean depths; spark-bright and
Ember-dusky petals still fall from
The rose dancing in the hearth, on the wick;
Forms still elaborate, fractally implied and
Impelled by tiny and mighty forces at play.
it is Her mantle I saw first, silver river,
All the shining things about Her, bright
As Her eyes, Her smile, the fire
She cradles in Her hands, that surrounds Her.

The Flame of an idea
The Forge of its making
The Well of its setting into place

Healer, maker, granter of imbas– She
Gave so much to me, it sufficed. Not
That I denied Her other domains, or scorned them,
Just bowed and let them pass on by.

But that complacent wall broke, and She stood
There in the middle of the night, when the
Bothy’s wall was torn down to take the body out.
Maker of the First Keen, Her voice wound through
The mourning sobs and whiskey laughter.
Sword not hammer in Her grip, shield hand,
Not healer’s She laid between my shoulders,
Behind my heart- wordless reassurance- “I
Have your back in this. Have, and give;
Have not, and receive; lapse, and be forgiven.
Make do, do without, but always do your best.”
And now she shows in so much else-
Sunlight flowing through amber glass, sparkling
On soapsuds; the smell of spices slowly
Annealing to delight in the cooking pot;
When I make any solid thing, or beautify
The familiar, known becoming rich and strange.

Washer of the Dead, Bringer Into the Tribe,
Midwife of the Soul through three worlds,
I shall never, ever lose my way to her Well
As long as I can set my faltering feet on
The first steps of the path to my own heart,
Where her living flame dances, too, paired
Water and fire, as much spring as forge,
As much spark as droplet, two and three
And oh! so many, unbound by number,
Spiraling infinite in the shining flow
Of Her mantle.

Prophet and Loss

Excellent article, especially with the reminder of how much we owe to Islam for the preservation of classical culture and knowledge. Extremism and dogmatism (whether Islamic, Christian, nationalist, atheist, or what have you) is what we need to fight against.

mainer74

Prophet and Loss,

Hail!

As the more astute among you have noted from my opening I am of a minority religion in my own country, for I am Asatru, or Heathen.  While centuries ago this was the faith of the bulk of the people in Northern Europe, those days are long past and we are solidly in the minority wherever we dwell.   As such I have grown used to seeing my beliefs and my religion mocked by those around me, used by the media either for a cheap laugh or as a stock villain.  Welcome to the planet, we are all minorities here; some of us just get more reminders.

We live in mixed communities, in whatever nation we live in, the people around us come from many other faiths, many other linguistic groups, many other ideological understandings, and yet, they are a part of our local community, our nation…

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