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Beltane in the Woods

May 3, 2010

Tags: order, Beltane, Beltane in the Woods, biochemistry, Earth, evening star, Gaia, Kneipp - Sebastian, poem, renewal, Sebastian Kneipp, spring, Venus, witchcraft

Enter the Circle, the holy ring,
Behold what the Goddess of Life will bring.
The Circle of Day—Moon and Sun,
The Circle of Year—summer, fall, winter, spring,
The Circle of Life—babe, maid, mother, crone,
Dust to dust. The circle forms a new beginning.

Prime of year, joy of flowers—
Mystery of spring—of thee we sing.
Hallow the forces of spring and creation,
Leave behind your wintry sedation.
Green wood inspires, friendship blooms,
Fruitfulness soars and health resumes.

Last Friday was Beltane – yes, the night when witches fly around on their brooms. We were driving up to Maine to open our cottage . The sun went under in a pale, pale pink horizon under a spring-blue sky, promising a beautiful next day. Night settled and the evening star, Venus, appeared - the “lovers’ star.” The moon had just peaked two nights ago. It was eerie and lovely.

No, I am not into witchcraft. But I work with the same herbs the people of old tried to understand. Nowadays, science helps me out: You wouldn't believe how much biochemistry is floating around at herbal conferences!

But the renewal in spring is as vital now as it was for the ancient. If Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” would come true, the whole human race would perish. (Don’t worry about Gaia, our Earth - she would survive, repeople herself with a hopefully more gentle, considerate race. If not that, at least the molds and lichens and bacteria would survive, and start the process of evolution all anew).

Beltane has special meaning for me because I am a gardener and herbalist, because I depend on healthy nature all around me – and because a Beltane celebration in the woods opens my “Sebastian” novel (the poem is taken from it).
Aspen eyes, by Peggy Peters

Iguazu Falls, by Xin Liu

Alexa Fleckenstein M.D. 2012, by Lolita Parker jr.

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