I woke this morning to a valley full of fog, listening to the eerie echo of the ravens croak through the thick, moist air. Even though the days are getting longer, there is a chill to the air that hints at distant snow-capped mountains & the vast expanse of the southern oceans. And it is almost lunch time & still no rays from Father Sun have penetrated the thick grey-white clouds that are hanging so low overhead.
In this way I contemplate the coming turn of the Wheel, Imbolc. This festival is called the Festival of Awakening by the lovely Glennie Kindred & is the gateway to Spring. It falls at the exact midpoint between the Winter Solstice & the Spring Equinox, August 7 at 5:40pm according to the Spheres of Light website.
For me, this festival is a time of hope, a time when the deep dreamings of Winter’s dark catch the light of the lengthening days & spark into action my body & my heart & my soul. This transition reminds me of the journey of the Cailleach to the Well of Youth, where she imbibes of the magickal waters there & returns to her maiden form, waving her white wand to bring the Earth back to her green state.
This time heralds my great annual Spring clean, which I hope to have done by the time the Wheel turns again at Ostara. The greens of Yule will be burned, items will be boxed up to send to the local charity opportunity shops, curtains will get a wash & the besom will come out of the closet for a big sweeping cleanse of the entire house. This year I will be making a potion with basil, bay & myrrh that I will use to mop the floors & wipe the surfaces of my house, adding purification, consecration, joy, peace, healing & blessings to the space. The sills will get the usual wipe down with methylated spirits & there will be a pot of lavender, apple, yarrow & rose boiling on the stove top to fill the house with love. A large white candle will burn brightly to its end on the kitchen table & salt will be sprinkled into the corners to capture anything that I may have missed.
The Hedgewitchery festivities usually involve a mass candle blessing, a huge feast & the reading of poems. This year I want us to make Inner Child Dollies to gift our youngest aspects with something special. I want to fill mine with herbs & dried corn & oats. I also want to try divining using ceromancy- the pouring of melted wax into a bowl of water. Wish me luck!
Whatever it is you do to tap into this very special time of year, may it be blessed with much peace & love & happiness.