As the wind’s tones begin to cool and the leaves change color, I find myself in an inspiring Autumnal world.
The colors of the Fall.
The feelings of the Fall.
The beauty of it all.
When I think of my favourite times of the year, I am immediately drawn to Samhuinn (Samhain, Hallowmas, Halloween) and May Day, or Beltane. These days are Celtic fire festivals, November 1st and May 1st, respectively, and they cut the wheel of the year into two halves: the light part of the year and the dark part of the year. And I absolutely love the magic that they bring with them.
Now, when the veil is at it’s thinnest, I feel most alive. There is something so very special in the air around Samhuinn. Something ancient, powerful and electric.
We are a week away from Samhuinn, and my skin crawls with it. The magic is palpable. I can feel it in my hair like static electricity, and it rustles through dried leaves, whispering tales of a harvest season now past. I long to be outside, before the winter chill sets in. To breath in the rich tones of fallen leaves and to say a final thanks to the mossy earth, that is now drying up to rest. I remind myself that I must spend time in the forest, now, before snow covers her boughs. The thought brings with it a mixed set of emotions as I already begin to miss the warmer months while looking ahead to cozy evenings by the fire.
And long nights wrapped in my creative cocoon.
Today, I will make incense for Samhuinn’s fire festival. I have no idea what I will prepare as of yet, and I trust that Brighid will guide me to the perfect combination of ingredients as I pluck rations from the shelf of herbs. As I mix them together in the mortar and pestle, she will send her goodbye kiss to the world, settling in for her long winter nap. When she does, she makes way for the Cailleach to take her place. The Cailleach is that horribly beautiful crone goddess of the winter months, who will watch over the world until May Day, when the light returns.
There is a melancholic beauty to the turning of the wheel.
A lovely thread of magic and hope that runs throughout the year… yet before I fall into the quiet of the darker months, there is still Samhuinn.
The fire. That magic.
I close my eyes and memory serves up warm rituals and beautiful souls. Friendships carved and parties danced. Ancestral visits and poignant moments of connection as the veil grows taut and we are granted such easy access to the other side.
I breath in Brighid’s sunlight through my window… a few more days left... she says.
And I nod my head in the memory, thankful for the opportunity to connect again, and looking forward to the fires of Samhuinn.