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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

When It Rains Naïveté

It seems I’m naïve. I was floored to the deepest depths of disbelief over this past weekend when I received a response (to something that requires no specifics) that went like this: Well, if they were dangerous they’d have been taken off the market.

It was spoken in absolute sincerity. It was not a joke. It was not sarcasm. It was someone’s truth.

It was a moment where I didn’t know, as they say, whether to shit, run or go blind.

So I did my best to share my perspective, offer resources, but dropped it, for my voice was being wasted.

In any event, I sat with the experience, to digest it as I continued some busy work. When the reality of the words finally got through to a place where I could feel their meaning, I cried. And I’m not a crier. Yet, when it rains from within, there’s Medicine to be made.

This is a sad, sad world where there’s still so, so many who accept without question that the commodities they purchase – from food to floor polishes, soaps to toothpastes, medicines to air fresheners, fertilizers to herbicides, and so on – are perfectly benign because they line the shelves of our frontline shrines of capitalism. Given all the information out there, this blind faith simply does not compute in any part of me.

In any event, sitting with the Medicine of this experience gave rise to a phrase that I’ve noticed resurfacing. A phrase that truly irritates me. I feel a visceral response to it. It saddens and angers me. And in this moment, as I document the Medicine of the experience, I realize my reluctance to challenge its use (or to even share the phrase here). My reluctance rests in the fact that I witness it being used by folks I know and care for.

And it’s this weird, counterproductive, counterintuitive compassion (or is it fear?) that is nourishing, in part, my newly realized naïveté. And that’s not Good Medicine.

So I pull this naïveté closer so that we may get intimate. I feel that disquieting sense of dis-ease, of discomfort, and it’s not reassuring. And as my discomfort waxes, Naïveté takes shape, and she pulls me closer, holds me like she cares, and dares me to consume and transform her.

And this, this I realize, much to my ever-familiar dismay, is the next Medicine I’m called to manifest and take in tempered doses.

The healing and the evolving never pauses. Damn it. And bless it. And get to work.


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Autumn Blessings

This past summer has offered me a bouquet of challenges and insights. So as fall evolves, and the leaves let loose, as the blooms fade, as the fruits and seeds take center stage, I welcome the deeper harvests of autumn, of letting go, of planting for some mystical future, of mulching with and composting that summer bouquet.

Prayerful ceremony roots the lessons, messages, and my own intentions in ways that I can revisit in these early days of autumn so that I may stay grounded in the vision I am dreaming and manifesting as I tend to the many urgent and practical tasks that nourish and sustain. Tasks like...

... fermenting tomatoes in hickory smoked salt for a delicious and nutritious beverage, or quite possibly a first frost Bloody Mary...

... honoring the abundance of Nature with beautiful feral apples, gifted by a generous and inspired spirit, put by in dried form, and in hibiscus-lime-apple jelly...

... garden tomatoes, jars and jars of puree for soups, stews, sauces, juices...

... preserving the bounty in every way I know, fermenting, dehydrating, canning, that I may Know My Food, and know that it nourishes and sustains Nona Gaia first, and me only as a bonus...

... preserving prayer, blessings, intention, healing energies and so much more by collaborating with Nona Gaia and her rooted children, my most sacred ancestors, by making magic together. Simple magick.

Holy, sacred tasks, one and all.


Friday, September 1, 2017

Drop Down, Ease Up and Take Care

This is the month of quickening. For me, anyway. I mean, I was away from my gardens for only a few days while attending the Women's Herbal Conference and when I returned the tomatoes that had been stalled in green - among other things - had burst into ripening. So now, the pace of harvesting and preserving revs up again. And this reminds me, yet again, how important Self Care is, and that it's vital to make time for it now, in this season... and, let's face it, in every season, especially in these times in which we live. ::nods:: 

That conference I mentioned was exceptionally Good Medicine for me. It reminded me of behaviors and activities that truly nourish, nurture and sustain me. Holistically. Like what, you ask? Well, like making time to look up into the evening sky to invite the starlight into my being... to hold a loved one (or a stranger), to just hold them, to be held, and to hold space for others to hold and be held... to make time to drum, alone, sure, but especially with others... to walk in prayer, in a labyrinth, through a garden, along a woodland path, or down a hallway... to raise my voice in Truth, in song, and in story - with the stars, with the drum, with the silence, with the plants, the trees, the pollinators, with my Self, and with my Tribe... 

These are a few Medicines that I will be nurturing this month, specifically as forms of Self Care. For me and for you. With that I invite you to open up to September, the month that ushers in Autumn, the month that quickens, even as it reminds us to drop down, ease up and take care.


Sunday, August 20, 2017

The Eclipse of Patriarchy

Tempus fugit. Summer is hitting high stride. And the pace of the season is picking up steam. It is a vivacious and passionate time.

I'm busy every single day with some harvest or another... in the gardens, drying room, kitchen, or at the craft table. It's a season where SelfCare can be easily forgotten, overlooked, put off for later.

So it's a season to remember to pause, breathe, dawdle, and what better day for such sacred acts than Moon's day, the day of Black Moon Eclipse? The day when my beloved Nona Luna says to papa sun, "I reflect your light back to you, old man. Go shine your light elsewhere, take it back and bathe it in shadow to make it whole and holy again." To me, this solar eclipse is sacred, and I will be sending up prayer to Nona Luna, and to old man sun in his time of quiet reflection, that the light of day may eclipse the poison of patriarchy in this world we share, and restore a nourishing harmony that sustains us and all Life... once again.

To me, this is the Eclipse of Patriarchy.

As it is, so shall it be.


Saturday, July 22, 2017

Simple Summer Medicine

As summer heats up I find myself surveying the garden and the wild spaces daily to see what needs attention, be it harvest, care, quiet honor, or simple gratitude.

The same is true for the garden of life. And yesterday offered some beautiful harvest... care... quiet honor... and simple gratitude... and in the form of several two-legged systers. It was a rare occurrence. It was a powerful day. So subtle and "ordinary" that I'm glad, so glad, that I saw it... recognized it... and welcomed the simple Medicine.

Keep your heart and eyes, your will and mind open to the simple blooms of summer. Today and every day. And every season.


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Warm and Sunny Solstice Blessings

Most every summer solstice for the past 23 years I've made myself a gift of intention, some have been transient, others have been longtime and steadfast tools of spirit and healing.

This year I knew I would be a stringing stem beads. I thought it would be cronewort, which I had prepared from the stripped stems. But no, it was motherwort, likewise prepared, that was ready and waiting and singing to me this day.

And this guidance is so fitting given the play events this morning. Lot's of mother verve around me on this very, very long day.

Whatever you do, or honor, or not, I wish you warm and sunny Solstice blessings - whatever your season!

Friday, June 16, 2017

New Friends, Anticipation, Gratitude & Memories

The gardens have been keeping me busy, preoccupied, and intimate with some of the best Medicine I know, communing with the earth and all her loved ones. Mine too.

Between all the spring transplanting, seeding and harvesting I make time and space to wander "my" little patch of earth. During a recent wander I discovered this new friend. At first glance I thought it was Rosa multiflora, but a second glance noticed distinct differences in leaf and bloom, and it's not any of the Rubus species that I'm familiar with, but I'm quite certain it's in the same family. I'll be curious to see the fruit that it creates.
The stinging nettles are blooming and preparing to make seed... another harvest to which I look forward.

My patch of Mentha suaveolens is always generous, and she always offers one the early harvests for drying. I love this spearmint in my tea blends.

The lovely Inula helenium against a background of mint (and other friends mixed in). She grows up so fast. It won't be long before her stalk rises high, bursting with blooms. And it won't be long after that that I'll be digging a few roots for winter Medicine.

And Rosa multiflora, our deliciously fragrant non-native invasive. We keep her in check, and I still collect her petals and buds for personal use in teas and skin preparations. Her fragrance fills the June air, and she reminds of that mead I made years back... a true labor of LoVe... collecting the petals over the 2-r-so-weeks of bloom... to create a unique gallon of liquid love.

And all these rooted friends, and more, remind me of the fleeting verve of spring. So I shall press the pause button this coming week, as summer leans closer, to take it all in, as part of my personal ritual to prepare for solar event that welcome's the steadier, fierier season to come.

If the botanical world excites you, visit my herb-dedicated blog, When Weeds Whisper, to learn more.


Friday, May 12, 2017

Deeper Roots... in the Garden and in Life

As spring keeps springing I find myself sinking my Roots ever deeper into my dedication to grow and preserve most of our own botanical food (and Medicine). I'm busy every day, no matter what else is on my schedule, planting more seeds, tending to seedlings and nurturing that with sustains me.

The early harvests have started, with nettles, wild onion, cleavers, among others like this rhubarb that's ready for harvest.

I review my seed packets several times a week to what needs to be planted indoors, in the greenhouse and in the earth. Sacred work, this.

The spouse helps to expand our ever-expanding garden beds, this year leveraging the dead maple trees that were taken down by creating hugelkultur beds that feed the soil, sequester carbon, hold moisture, all in the spirit of permaculture, a modern term for a very traditional method of growing food that, in essence, mimics Nature, the wisest inspiration for all practical wisdom.

So I am busy. And I am expanding my dedication (some might say obsession) with growing our own food (and Medicine) organically, with honor for Nature, with LoVe, as the sacred work that it is, always has been (until recent times), and always will be (gods willing).