I have cocooned myself this summer~
wrapped myself away from the daily chaos modern life bombards us with;
wrapped myself away with silk-soft strands of animal wisdom around me.
I learned from my dog to play with abandon;
to bark & howl with sheer joy a moving body brings;
to wag my tail & invite others to play – without shame or judgement – & share this exuberance of life.
I learned from my cats it is okay to walk away when I am done;
to nap without excuse & to do nothing with serene & regal grace;
to blink my eyes slowly in the face of ‘should be doing(s)’, stretch languidly & reply that I am doing nothing but being.
I have cocooned myself away this summer.
I shall not break free – that struggle is for the butterfly & not me.
I wish to expand this cocoon of earned wisdom & find others of like mind.
Together, we can create the world I long to Be in.
A fragile sort of melancholy has settled around me, a rain-spun shroud of mist and dreams that is waiting desperately for the sun so that I can shrug it off and fly into golden summer days.
This image captures my mood beautifully. Just waiting for the skies to clear, and sitting, thinking… with occasional lapses into pondering.
Doesn’t the year know that I have plans for my free time? I have almost two free months for myself after this school year ends (in 7 work days, and I am counting): and time is taking its merry time bringing me across that line. It has been a long year — a marathon year — and I am ready to close it.
But for now, I must wait for the rain to end and for the 9th of June to do that. In the meantime, I shall continue to ponder, and be grateful that my feathers are waterproof.
Recently, I celebrated a milestone birthday. It was a bitter-sweet occasion marked by the physical absence of my mother, but my children and I still invoked her memory at dinner, and thus, she was still with me.
One of the memories I shared was how, a few years ago, I had begun using some night creams. I admitted to being a dabbler in that area, never quite seeing the need (good genetic trees can make you a bit blasé to a few things), and how my mother cracked a smart-ass remark about being early on the skin care bandwagon. My dabbling continued off-and-on over the years, until now. It’s that milestone, and a few other things, drawing skin care more readily to mind.
“It was one of the few sorrows of Granny Weatherwax’s life that, despite all her efforts, she’d arrived at the peak of her career with a complexion like a rosy apple and all her teeth.”
Terry Pratchett, Wyrd Sisters
This winter, I taught swimming classes after school three nights a week. All that time in a chlorinated pool did terrible things to my skin. Dry, tight, dull, and flakey are words that spring readily to mind. To say that I was displeased was an understatement. Fortunately, the means to the remedy was very close to me. My daughter is (and has been for a decade) a fan of K-pop. K-pop idols have beautiful skin, so I began to do my research on the latest fashion fad — which is Korean beauty regimes. I like these, because the look is dewy and fresh, not flat and matte, as is the trend here in the USA.
The classic ten steps (I know. “Ten!” was my first thought, too.) are the basic: (daily) 1. Oil cleanse 2. Water cleanse 3. Toner 4. Essence 5. Serums/Ampoules/Face Oils 6.Seal/Protect 7. Eye Cream 8. Skin Cream/Moisturiser (added once weekly) 9. Exfoliator 10. Masks.
It seems a lot at first glance, but I have gotten proficient with following these steps morning and evening, cutting the application time down from 10 to 5 minutes. It has been worth it to add this to my morning routine, and the results are now noticeable. I’m shopping at Peach and Lily now, and customizing my skin care regime to get the healthiest skin possible. Granny Weatherwax and I do disagree on this aspect of witch-hood, after all.
I have begun to buy all my products from Peach & Lily. They have a reward point system, and if you’d like to try them, click this link and you will get $10.
I told you I was the witch.
I told you I was the wolf.
I cannot dumb it down any more for you.
Society has already made you~
an ignorant cow, stupidly chewing
the cud of media bullshit
in the putrid glow of your television screen.
(Your kind makes me want to scream.)
I would try to elucidate you,
but I have given up the habit of banging my head against society’s walls.
I shall eat with you honey collected from the finest foxgloves and mandragora,
and grown in the garden you seek to Roundup and destroy.
My words always sweet to your kind, but dripping poison
to undermine you.
I shall perfume the air with salvia, wormwood, and myrrh.
My eyes watchful, waiting for you
to dip a drowsy nod & then I shall haunt your dreams
and turn your world inside out.
I shall feel the moist soil on my hands as I dig,
continuing to plant ivy to climb your walls and pull them down.
I will tend the slender willow, smiling when her roots crack open your controlled pipelines
and release the wild waters across your barren landscape.
I shall continue to anoint my skin with hemlock,
belladonna, henbane, and wild rose;
With my touch alone, I shall send you to the wild mountain to dance with the devil
and pull civilization from your shrieking soul.
I am the witch.
I am the wolf.
If you continue to seek my company
I shall, like Beatrice, kill you
so that you are reborn,
fit to keep me company.
I have an interesting relationship with Christianity~ and to be fair, it started before I was born. My mother was born into a mixed marriage. Her father was (Irish) Catholic and her mother was (Hungarian) Methodist. My father’s family was the opposite: (Irish) Catholic mother and (Hungarian) Methodist father. Needless to say, family get-togethers were entertaining.
For myself, from a young age, I noticed that the parishioners (of either religious flavour) were as sweet as could be to your face on Sunday, but wouldn’t piss up your arse on Monday if your kidneys were on fire. This always struck me as wrong — and I came to the conclusion that I was probably the only person in the congregation(s) actually listening to the words in red when they were read to the people.
I also was always drawn to the inherent esoteric mysticism within Gnostic Christianity — which was/is a big ‘no-no’ in the dogmatic structure of the church(es). Needless to say, I gave absolutely no fucks and continued my own spiritual explorations without the added benefit of the benedictions of either sect.
So here I am, sat at my table, eating baked haddock (seasoned with lemon grass, garlic, and a hint of red pepper) thinking about my mom and watching the sun set over a verdant line of trees that have ‘miraculously’ regreened after winter’s embrace.
I am not, as my children reminded me when we went shopping for fish, a good Christian, but I am a decent mystic. May the Mysteries reveal themselves to you this weekend, and may the blessings of Spring find you in good health.
Twice daily, I drive by Mary — a perpetually bored and disappointed Madonna planted in the garden, her arms eternally extended in benediction to an increasingly oblivious humanity.
Some days, I drive by unheeding, caught up in the sleepy rush of pre-caffeinated working life… an ungrateful child, indeed.
Other days, I spy her, Goddess mantled in stellar blue, bridging the worlds:
Crescent moon cradling the earth at her feet with the serpent and its apple curled around lunar horns~
Arms extended, sharing the blessings of the solar realms with us all…
perpetually hoping that we eventually (re)kindle our own divine spark.
Deep in the heart-wood that reaches upward to crown the sacred hill, Callieach’s white hart stamps the ground.
Antlered head cocks to one side as he listens to the birds speaking; sharing the best places to forage and the ones to avoid due to prowling cats and foxes seeking to put on winter fat. Once more the hart stamps the ground, steam rising from his nostrils to collect in clouds rising to crown his antlers. The conversation changes and he listens to wolves singing of winter winds and empty bellies; best to run and hunt lest winter stalk them later.
He nods in assent and his breath curls more around each point on his head. He bows his head to the ground under the growing weight. So he stands, waiting — impatiently — for the Queen of winter to gather his breath on her staff and spin out the snow-heavy clouds of winter.
I walk amongst the thorns that I wear upon my brow.
I clothe myself in the spun-silk of white blossoms budding out on spiked branches and smile with purple juice from berries ripe-burst upon my lips.
I dream the shadows.
I walk in candle light down mirrored corridors, where I catch hidden glimpses of my soul — waiting — in the bridal chamber between heaven and hell.