from Burning Drift-wood, John Greenleaf Whittier, one of the Fireside Poets
Also known as St Brigid’s Day, today marks the end of Winter. As one of the four Celtic Fire Festivals (Imbolc 1 February, Beltane 1 May, Lughnasadh 1 August and Samhain 31 October), it prepares the ground for the abundant, proliferative fertility of the full force of Spring yet to come, closer to the Equinox.
Here in the northern hemisphere, its transition is brumal and beautifully wild and windy; but when darkness comes so early at the end of each day, as much as I love crisp, revitalising air, the dusk brings a need to rest in the nest!
The depth of rest taken in the dark season provides the ground for vitality when the Sun returns. Anon
The first buds have already appeared along with yellow gorse, the pink of cherry blossom, with the first carpet blush of lilac crocus and white snowdrops surrounding the trees.
As one cycle is dies, the next is birthing.
Kung Hei Fat Choi, All!
Aligned with galactic or Nature’s time, yesterday was the beginning of the Chinese Lunar New Year of the Wood Horse and the New Moon in Aquarius, bringing with it a vast influx of beneficial energy and renewal.
I feel it is a time full of hope and, whatever this year brings, the equine symbolism for me is not the image of the wooden trickster on wheels at Troy! Nor the tragic misuse of those noble, majestic beings for human battles throughout the centuries.
It is instead the symbolism of the living wood of breathing trees who enable life on Earth; and the mystic vision of stallion horsepower that moves everything forward even faster – with the added spiritual power and inspiration of the white, winged-horse, Pegasus, soaring into the stars!
The symbol of this new year’s horse brings to mind wild, wild horses running freely, their manes waving in the wind; of Anna Sewell’s “Black Beauty”; and an indelibly prophetic dream I once had of an untamed, wounded horse running towards me escaping to my peaceful forest!
This night, light a roaring fire or rekindle resting passion with the flame of a single candle; making your intention to defeat the Chimera, like Pegasus to fly “On wings of fire like steeds of steam;” and soar as high as the stars to your dreams this wonderful year!
No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.
“Dedicated to the Priests of Peace, all Shepherds and Horse Lords
and my Imperial Lore Liege – the King of the Rumbling Spires”,
from A Beard of Stars which gift I still have from 1970. Thanks, Pater. X
I keep vigil
to the fire
in my heart.