The news is all over the Pagan blogsphere (and if you’re not connected into The Wild Hunt you should be): the VA finally approved the pentacle as an acceptable religious symbol for headstones for veterans buried in national cemeteries.
I took these photos of Abe and Rosemary’s headstone on Febrauary 17, 2007. I found on top an offering of a stone and a golden earring — offerings of love and remembrance for two of our local ancestors.
Knowing Rosemary, her response to today’s news would probably have been, “It’s about damn time.”
This offering prayer is dedicated to the 22 people killed in today’s mass shooting at Virginia Tech.
Hermes! Hermes! Hermes! Listen, the people call to you!
O, great Hermes Psychopompos, conveyor of souls,
Many lost ones will show up on the threshold tonight.
Guide them gently to the shore of the River Styx and beyond.
I offer this bag of coins for their passage.
O, great Hermes Enodios, he who travels over the lands
Many souls are wandering, unsure of the road they travel.
Watch over their journey as they cross the last boundaries.
I offer this grain for their last pilgrimage.
O, scheming Hermes Dolios, charming trickster of the night,
The souls in your care found death in violence unsuspecting.
Help them escape from the pain of their last moments.
I offer this honey to sweeten their memories.
O, divine Hermes Diaktoros, translator between gods and men,
Heavy are the hearts that mourn today’s loss.
Whisper sweet words to cleanse their wounded hearts.
I offer this wine to ease their pain.
Hermes! Hermes! Hermes! Listen, this person calls to you!
I pour out the wine in your honor.
I pour out the oil in your honor.
I pour out the milk and honey in your honor.
Hermes! Hermes! Hermes!
Do not let the lost souls wander forever in the wild darkness.
Take them safely to rest in the Realms of the Dead.
Somedays, I feel like I just don’t know anything well enough to write about it or teach about it. I mean, I do know things, know how to do things, know in my gut what might work, know to trust my instincts in circle and in magic. But how do you pass that kind of knowledge on?
I don’t know.
I’m feeling like I want to try new and crazy ideas and techniques out with others. Break out of the mold and flex some muscles. Not that the mold is bad. The container of my current group is necessary for the work we do, but that’s not the only work I want or need to be doing right now.
I am calling some things into my life: energy healing techniques, sensual touch, heart circles, and ecstatic ritual. Dancing in the backyard, painted and costumed, around a fire, singing a spontaneous song of freedom, power, and joy.
How is this connected? I’m sure it is. One feeling leads to another. Let’s see where it goes.
Last night as I was driving home from my friend Carly’s lovely, moving, earth-based Pesach seder, I looked up and saw the full moon brightly, calmly shining in the night sky. I began to rifle through my memory for any songs/chants that I could remember about the moon. I sang two over and over:
Full Moon shining bright
Midnight on the water
Diana’s silver daughter
Silver shining wheel of radiance, radiance!
Full Moon, come to us, come to us!
But that wasn’t enough for the spirit that moved through me. Through various hummings and snitches and snatches of words and melody, I finally allowed a new song to well up.
Lady of the Moon
Hear the people calling
Bless us with your boon!
Silver bright in the night sky
Shining in the dark
Reflecting in each other’s eyes
Connecting heart to heart
It has been a decade since I’ve been in a group that regularly met on the full and new moon. And frankly, I don’t notice the energy pull of the lunar phases that many say they feel. For me, it is often a happy surprise to look up and see her shining round and bright. Like a phone call from a distant friend you think about occasionally, but whom you haven’t talked to in ages.
I have been toying with the idea of doing something more regularly at the new and full moons, but haven’t been sure what would engage my imagination enough to ensure that I follow through….I’ve never been good at being solitary. Perhaps one song from the deep self and the heart will spur the desire forward.
We shall see where the wandering takes us.