Of Skulls, Wild Blessings, Pain and Ink

I got out of bed counting skulls. I always find healing in the act of counting blessings. If you know me a bit, you aren’t wondering about my use of the words skulls and blessings in the same paragraph—I love skulls, and recalling the tales of how they got to me is quite soothing.

Take the skull in the photo below, as an example. It’s a gift from my friend Lynne, mistress of the Insomniac’s Attic. She gave it to me during her last visit to New York City… in which we delighted in old books, got lost looking for an antique shop that insisted on hiding behind a delivery truck, and witnessed a rather irresponsible New Age seller tell a customer that onyx stones would give her telepathic powers.
Weeks later, the outrage I felt towards the seller’s statement (and the amusement my reaction brought to Lynne’s face) makes me laugh like a maniac. Laughter heals. The same is true of rituals and symbols. That’s the idea behind the grouping in the image: a frog from Stacy, a skull from Lynne, rosemary from Gina, and a mini-book from Emma, every piece sitting on a stone and a shell that holds its own tale. Even the black ribbon has a story, and telling myself all those tales (and laughing) pushes the aches away. Yes, it’s magic.

After saying goodbye to the frog, skull, rosemary and book, I started breakfast and made my bed. The quilt filled me with warm grins. It’s a handfasting present from my Mother-in-Law. As my not-so-perfect picture shows, the squares make an M or a W (for Magaly & William). And yes, the stitching forms lovely hearts. How cool is that, my Wicked Luvs? How could pain and exhaustion ever compete against the love put into such thought-filled gift?

Some gifts are unexpected treasures. The memories of when I first saw them always rush through me like a wave of ecstatically surprised endorphins. Yep, I’m referring to the bee kissing crabapple blossoms in the photo below. I was gifted this glimpse into Nature’s crafty magic, right after having spent a couple of hours searching for mushrooms. The search was a total fiasco… So, I was justifiably disappointed. Then I saw the bee… and the blooms… and I was delighted. Oh yes, I’m grinning like a lunatic, just thinking about it.

I’m writing this post while my heat pad does its magic on the pain that kicks my back. And “Yes! Yes!! Yes!!!” I’m smiling, as I think of gifts… of friends… of spring… of skulls… of wild magic… of every experience life has inked into my blood… and of how lucky I am to have the strength to craft them into poems and stories to share with you.

Do you count personal blessings? If so, do tell me of a wee blessing that brings all sorts of gigantic smiles to your face. Yummy grows yummier when spread. Really. 😉

A Stinker of a Time

If you’ve read me for more than a season, then you already know that my springs tend to be full of T.S. Eliot and The Waste Land. Who can resist inspiration like: “That corpse you planted last year in your garden / Has it begun to sprout? Will it bloom this year?”

“A Stinker of a Time”

I learned the trade from Primavera the Fisher.

“Spring can’t stand botched up winter jobs,” Primavera said, the first morning she took me to the docks. “She always floats their mistakes to the surface. It’s a stinker of a time for us, even when their rot comes carrying gifts.”

Before I could ask what she meant, Primavera speared a severed hand that had been bobbing for sunlight. Its pinky finger wore a huge ruby ring.

“They’ll never be good at winter jobs, if they can’t keep a corpse from blooming in spring.”

In winter, it’s best to bury or burn.

.
a wee note…
– Linked to Friday Fictioneers. Visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog, to join the writing bloom. Then follow this LINK, to read what others have fished out of the docks.

photo by Fatima Fakier Deria

Spring Equinox in New York

Spring comes to New York City in thigh-high snow boots, pockets full of pomegranate seeds and the sprouting hopes of Winter’s dead. Some shoot frigid thoughts her way, but Crocuses and Dogwoods stretch their roots under icy soil, and bloom. The wild Witch dances barefoot in snow, heating this mad world from the inside out. Frozen tears melt into dirt, and Spring shrouds Winter with songs of buzzing bees and butterfly kisses… to come.

frosty March
chilling flesh and bone,
but souls spring

.
the wee notes…
– Remnants from our last snowstorm are dirty piles on the ground. So, I’m not celebrating this Spring Equinox in my traditional witchy way—walking in the woods as the sun rises, searching for spring sprouting through dead leaves, listening to birds sing of mating and fighting and of whose plumage is most impressive. On this first day of spring, I shall be Aries wild, and celebrate her coming by playing with my books, thinking of seeds, singing offkey, dancing… right after my limbs stop feeling stiff enough to snap (say that 13 times fast).
– Pomegranate Seeds ~ in Greek Mythology, spring doesn’t start until Persephone returns from the Underworld. Soon after her return, it is discovered that her stay won’t be permanent—she ate pomegranate seeds while she was there.
– Linked to the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads ~ Tuesday Platform.

Wishing you a delicious Spring Equinox, my Wicked Luvs.