Edit: this was written last night, on a strangely balmy evening, under a full moon. I was deliriously tired, (which is perhaps one of my favourite times to write – in that dreamy, twilight haze). It’s cold and raining now. Spring is a fickle mistress…
It seems to be the case, that the more I’m out in the hurly-burly, the more my mind turns to domestickals. That eternal quest for balance that seems to pursue me.
I’d rather read and write than clean. But I need a clean and peaceful environment in order to think straight. So…you see my dilemma.
It’s Spring. It truly is Spring, even though the calendar says otherwise*, and even when the weather packs it in and turns brutish, it’s happening. I walk with a friend, and we’re pursued by the aching fragrance of early Spring flowers. It hits us like old memories: absurd, lost love and wild hopes; but it’s also a promise of all to come, because youth deludes itself that it’s the only dream worth having. And we don’t buy that lie for a minute.
And today Spring had her turbo-booster on. Warm gustiness that whips the hair and sends skirt billowing at scandalous altitudes. There’s the kind of sunshine that compels all the creatures outside to bask in long-absent warmth. My courtyard resembled a Roman bath at one point, with dog and felines lounging around, corpulent and sun-drunk.
Curtains, couch throws, and a Spanish shawl (that I use as a curtain) are tossed into the wash with lavender water, and spritzed with sun, wind, and jasmine. I plump pillows, and stretch to clear cobwebs from the rafters. I collect bouquets of now-dwindling red camellias, along with the first precious daffodils of the season. The yellow I crave. I even clean out my fridge, (which was more of an emergency evacuation than a clean).
I light a sage bundle, and whisper homage to the Old Ones. The smoke lingers, drifting through the hall, hanging louche and sinuous in the sunlight.
Not being a Summer Person,** I almost feel traitorous – embarrassed by my susceptibility to Spring’s seductions. After all, it’s an augur of the cursed heat to come. But Spring. It has, and always will be, I suspect, my moste secrect, beloved season. Spring is tenderness, trust, hopefulness, and unabashed Romanticism. I’m always besotted by the season. Hopeless, I know. It always makes me…remember. It shocks me into remembrance of what a life, and the living of it means. Sensual, dangerous, rapturous, brief.
Even the quietest of lives can contain hearts and minds that are limitless in their yearnings and imaginings. That which is often designated as “wild”, and exciting by the wider culture, and its feverish pursuit of the next high, feels to me, conservative, unimaginative, and tedious. Each to their own, hey?
And I feel that cynicism is pervasive, but that Beauty is its antidote. Beauty defies fear and nurtures compassion. It’s no lightweight distraction or delusion. It’s the real, divine deal. But I’m no priestess.
And Beauty comes in so many forms, hey? Spring offers its effortless glut of all that’s lovely. Dancing with beloveds around an outdoor fire under a rococo sky that Time would hold still for.
Now that the wind swings around from the cruel, scouring Antarctic, to the ancient, fiery and belligerent North; I succumb without hesitation. I throw the doors and windows open…inviting it all within. Daring the siren song.
All around me there are flowering plums, releasing their abundant charms to the winds, just as the golden wattles begin to wane and fall. When it’s properly dark, I join the scuttling confederacy of lunatics who dance their rapt devotionals beneath the moon. I ask Her what she wants from me, born as I was beneath one of her wicked, intemperate moods. She’s not as chaste as all those dead men insist. She’s as sybaritic and deranged as those of us she incites to lunacy. The joke’s on us, but she wants to laugh with us, and let us know we’re never alone. Just look up and peek beneath her skirting clouds.
I offer her my sore mother’s heart, a libation of dark red wine, and this bewitching contralto.*** The music arches over the garden, stirring the aching shadows, and speaking to the moss, and mountain dark. An enormous ‘possum, holding a large chunk of pineapple skin, sits bolt upright and stares at me from the compost at the back of the garden; haughtily bearing witness to this swaying woman, who sings to the moon.
We acknowledge one another’s freakdom, quite cheerfully. And I can’t bear to leave the night, so filled with story, spirit, and newborn growth. There are ferny promises, whispered.
By day, I tend seeds that I’ve sown that are beginning to emerge, (peony poppies, shasta daisies, bergamot); and schedule writing and research jobs, always walking the line between precarity and plenitude. And knowing now, that despite everything, and that even though I don’t court upheaval, I am supremely adapted to instability and change. Perhaps that’s why Spring is my season after all.
Wishing you a beautiful weekend. And the brightest and best of Moons. xx
*The indigenous wisdom says otherwise – we’re entering the windy season, which is a lot like Spring.
**I do mention this, quite a bit, don’t I?
***my favourite of hers. She channels something raw, and wretched, and utterly sublime. This is my song for the Full Moon. Utterly required at the moment.