A brief respite from the wonderful hurly-burly. It’s been one of those intense periods of work and creativity, yet for the first time in ages, I’ve not been doing much writing, (of my own). However, it was back to it this morning, and then I thought I’d pop in here and say hello.
These times away from routines can be compost-making times, hey? I remind myself of this as I watch the leaves whirl madly outside my window. They scatter themselves across the lawn, and I rake them up from time to time, giving them to the garden beds, where they’ll nourish the plants with their rich rot. The Chook Ladies are doing their level best to bring disorder and mayhem to the garden, throwing themselves into the piles of leaves, like the feathered berserker butterballs that they are.
It’s been unseasonably warm, but now the sky is gathering up its stormy skirts, layer upon layer of cloudy tulle, white mist, and leaden silk. Every now and then, there’s a gust of wind that sets the wind chimes singing, (they never fail to enchant me), and more leaves are released from their increasingly bared branches.
It’s been a teensy bit over a year since we moved here, and I have to say that I have never in my life been more at home anywhere, nor thought it was possible to fall so deeply in love with a place, as I have with this little mountain.*
And all around me there is inspiration and beauty, and I’m pulled in so many directions. It’s almost like a Spring Fever, this snowball of creative activity and fervour. I attempt to centre myself, yet I’m quite happy for it to tumble from me in a mad gush. It’s part of the ebb and flow, perhaps. The calm, tranquil, even-tempered waters are fine some of the time, but there is also a time at the end of Winter, when the rivers and streams rush with the thaw. They boil and race, released from stillness in all their clean, cold clarity. They are unapologetically passionate, and intent upon their course.
Perhaps we favour too much the stillness, the calm. Striving for such a state, understandably as a counterpoint to the sensory overload of our Age. Yet all seasons and moods carry power and beauty, and the energy within them to transform, create, destroy. So I welcome this Spring-like energy I’m experiencing, even though I am also enjoying the beautiful and ancient descent into the deep seasons.
In the spirit of Spring, but rather than try to play catch-up in too mad a fashion, I shall toss a bouquet of random things in the air, and see where they land…
Despite the fact that we’re knee-deep in Autumn here, I’m poring over seed catalogues. I can’t help myself. I’m quite obsessed. And right now I’m sowing sweet pea, comfrey, and wildflower seeds. I’ve been planting out blackcurrant bushes, and yet more lavender. My honesty seedlings are flourishing and more than ready for planting out. All my kale and salad greens are doing well, offering up on a near daily basis their leaves for salads. And after much research, which has resulted in an agony of decision-making, I’ve ordered a climbing rose called “Cinderella”.
Said rose is actually part of my cunning plan to transform the benighted Frankenstein’s Potting Shed into something less retina-burning, and a lot more fragrant. It’s a three-pronged approach involving paint, Virginia Creeper, and…roses. There’s also buddleia involved, but that maketh the plan four-pronged, and therefore less elegant in the telling. I shall post some before-and-after pics anon. Poor old potting shed. At some point before our arrival here, it suffered the indignity of a tree falling on its roof. As if it weren’t unfortunate-looking enough, in all its naked aluminium glory.
It’s also spurring me to paint other projects, including the exterior trim on my house. Although the latter plan, (along with the shed-painting), is somewhat thwarted by the season. So I’ll have to sit on my hands and wait until Spring.
A list, of sorts…
Long walks with swathes of ruby leaves at my feet; golden, sepia light; Samahin night with Starchild incense, and bats; sipping sweet rose London fog tea; receiving a gift of sublime ecoya candles; reading the new issue of Womankind Magazine, and devouring Neil Gaiman’s Sandman, (in one sitting). Helping a friend paint a bedroom and ensuite in her home, and loving how it’s evolving from a cold-looking storage space into a cosy sanctuary. Knitting up a ‘Juliet’ using Malabrigo worsted in ‘Paris Night’, (as I work my way though my wool stash). Thinking about the (un)common ground – the nexus between magic and science – and how fascinating is this idea to a science-loving witch who despises superstition and crackpot ideologies . You know the ones – the compassion killers that masquerade as enlightenment, but which plug us full of the same old, old fear and guilt; and a delusional sense of superiority.
Listening to Radiohead’s ‘Burn the Witch’; loving the fierce but kind truth-tellers, (there are more and more appearing, right when we need them most). Sensing the call to Sharon Blackie’s Reclaiming the Wise Woman course; feeling incredibly inspired by Colette O’Neill’s Bealtaine Cottage, (I love it more than all the words, and am often deeply moved, as well as tangibly impacted when I see and read of her profound work of love, and healing earth magic). Seed-swapping; spending time with dear friends; creating a playlist for a book I’m writing; nibbling on baba ganouj scattered with pomegranate seeds, and scoffing avocados…whole, (lemon juice, salt, spoon, inhale).
*Or rather, a hill, as one would refer to a landmark of this height in New Zealand