December 17th, 2019


Three Tales for the solstice fire

Wondrous things come in threes, so let my telling be in three.

The first is a tale of the heart. It begins in kidnapping, and mother’s sorrow, and the inflicted frozen horror of the world, but that is not where this tale lies. Imagine that near ending – the finality of a rescue close at hand. Then this young woman, a Springtime flower girl, her mother’s daughter, sees the fruit. She feels the hunger. She looks about this realm that is a prison.

It was a pomegranate; the fruit of prosperity, the fruit of nuptials, a marriage seed. Hardly nourishing at all. She knew it’s weight. Sometimes, you chose your home. Sometimes, a home chooses you. Sometimes, you pretend there is no choice. So it was that Persephone gained two homes and the world of seasons was born.

Is this winter a mother’s grief, or a marriage bed? Are we torn from our gardens or find them by the hearth? Rue and thank Persephone for her choice. Give us a turn. With nowhere to go, how should a wheel turn. Spin it again, Winter. Greet your love. Welcome to the sensual dark of the year.

The second is a caretaking tale. A mother and queen adored her son above all others. Well would she guard and protect him. Then in his infant swaddling, the threads of fate she saw and a young death. Desperate, the mighty woman gathered oaths and negotiations with all that was; each tree, wind, stone, furred and feathered thing, and all that was. The world gained her luck as they agreed that none among them would harm her beloved Child. So, he grew and became known as impervious – for no manner of flame, stone, blade, or fletching would harm him. It became a game to attack him and revel in this unyielding defense, a joy to behold, and a revel for those who knew him.

Thus it was a trickster saw this and grew jealous. Taking a maiden form, he approached the Queen and asked was she not fearful? Had she truly made him guarded against all? “All but the mistletoe,” she answered, “For it was so small and weak that it could do no one any harm.” So it was, the weakness was discovered and within a day the shining lad was struck dead by a evergreen spur.

Yet, this is not the whole tale, for magic lay in regret. Seeing she could not protect her boy from harm, the Queen wept and forgave the small sprig. As tears clung to leaves, they adorned it as berries. Then brewed Mistletoe renewed the strength of the fallen boy, as Winter renews us all, as dead wood hides the world strength. There are no protections from fate, but there is love and forgiveness amidst the trickery. Evergreen is hope.

Then, my tale. I sit by this fire and watch my life burn by. Time burning away in the wood. It is a fine pyre. Solstice burns before us, and I am glad to spend it so. Tales and wine and love enwraps the night, and the spirit soars like smoke; laughs like flame.

If we must burn, let us burn well. There will be Winters yet – darkness and cold. Let us burn the best fire. Winter come. Bring the passionate darkness. Enjoin us in conjugal heat. Renew sinews in evergreening splendor. Here’s the light, Winter’s crackling Laughter. We burn together in the world like this fire. Let the season be our time to shine.

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