A story as we shift into dark half of the year 🍂
Here is my contribution to what was my druid seed group Alban Elfed eisteddfod yesterday. 🍂🍁
This was born as a story I wrote for a sabbat workshop with friends two sun cycles ago.
🍂Autumn blessings as:
The Cailleach Stirs
Its summers end, the air around us changing, the scent, crisp and clear. Darkness soon enveloping our evenings, the earth prepares for her long rest.
The landscape around us glows in brightest of colours of life's cycles last breath, as earth prepares her ancient children, the trees, for their winters sleep. The black shapes and caws of the crows at dusk echo through the skies.
A cave in the mountains is awakening as the lady, once of youth, now ages within the belly of the earths womb, it is her aging that brings our earth’s changes at this time.
This lady is woven deeply within the fabrics of these lands, she emerges from the cave. A cloak shrouding her shoulders, and leaving woven streads of web that turn to frost in her wake. A crooked staff of yew in hand. Her face hard to see, as she looks down, hunched over, with her gated hobbly walk.
‘Caww caww’, a crow swoops down and lands on her shoulder, as she starts out across the land.
She is, the night hag, the hag of Berra, the witch of the North, the bringer of frost, the taker of souls. The washer woman, as she can be seen to wash the clothes of the dead, unburdening them. She is a shapeshifter, a walker between worlds.
She fights against the life of spring as she clears the lands with her frosts.
She is the ancient one, the Cailleach. The keeper of knowledge of all that these lands hold. She walks alone knowing, sensing, all that has been, and all that will come.
Those who come across her and live to speak of her, because it wasnt their time to cross the veil, tell tales of her deep penetrating eyes. Eyes that when they look into your eyes, see the very imprint of your soul, she can see everything within you, your past your future. It is said her gaze alone can release your burdens, jusr as she releases the leaves off the tree and sends the earth to sleep.
For she is not really to be feared, it is her ancient wisdom, the unknown, that people fear as the landscape changes, the darkness hangs over us shortening our days, and the veil between worlds is thin. It is the unknown of how a maiden becomes a mother, then looses her apparent beauty as she appears as a crone, a hag. It is the winter lands she brings they fear, the lack of crops, the death.
But, when you look back at her, back into her eyes you see the light of her youth, and the wisdom within.
It takes courage to do so, and courage to bear our soul to enable us to transform.
It takes courage to release the burdens of this life we dont need to hold, burdens we get use to carrying.
It takes courage to seek her guidance.
It takes courage to reflect within, with our lady of these lands.
It take courage to see her... Soul to Soul.