Tuesday, 22 January 2013
And wrap myself around you,
Assured that when you wake
You will gaze in wonder at my virginal beauty.
Lose yourself in my softness,
Feel me yield beneath your touch,
Will me to stay,
Yet know it cannot be
For the warmth of your embrace
Will lead to my eternal sacrifice
And in an instant I will be gone,
Possessed only by myself.
From 'Mrs Darley's Pagan Whispers' - 'The Snow Maiden'
Wednesday, 16 January 2013
Today, Twelfth Night falls on the 5th January, however prior to the calendar changes of the C18, Twelfth Night fell 11 days later - around 16th January. The exact date however matters not, it is the spirit of the occasion which makes the festival.
The first writings we have of Wassailing appear in the C14, where the host of a party is described as holding up a communal drinking bowl and shouting out the word 'wassail'. The word derives from the Norse 'wes hail', or the Anglo Saxon, 'waes hael' meaning 'good health' or 'be whole'. After taking a drink the bowl was passed around and accepted each time with a kiss. The drink itself was thought to be 'lambswool', a mixture of mulled ale, herbs, honey and apples (you can purchase a pack of lambswool mix at the 'Copper Pot' in Bewdley Museum)
During the following century cakes were dipped into the bowl, and later still, in the apple growing regions of Britain, a ritual of blessing the apple trees with cider evolved. This was accompanied by hanging cider soaked toast in the trees for the birds and firing guns to scare away any impish spirits.
Although they are both now over, make a date for next years diary to visit Bewdley Museum in Worcestershire for the day time Wassail and Cookley in Worcestershire for an evening celebration with lit torches.
Meanwhile may all your trees bear fruit and Wassail to you and yours.
Read more: 'Mrs Darley's Pagan Whispers'
Thursday, 10 January 2013
This was the first Moon after the dark time and was welcomed as both a sign of hope in so much as the light was gaining, albeit the worst of the weather was not yet over and also a time of abstinence and suspension following the Winter Solstice activities.
To the Celts the Wolf was a powerful animal and many of their Deities had the Wolf as their totem animal, for contrary to popular belief wolves are rarely aggressive, even amongst themselves and have a strongly developed sense of family and belonging.
May this Wolf Moon bring you a sense of belonging and protection.
Read more: 'Mrs Darley's Moon Mysteries'
Thursday, 3 January 2013
Tonight and tomorrow night bring us the Quadrantids meteor shower - it's short and sharp as it only lasts for about an hour each night (3rd and 4th) and is best seen in the north east after midnight. It will however treat us to around 40 or so fast blue meteors.
The planets are a real treat as saturn can be seen in the south east around 3.30 in the morning with a small telescope and the rings are actually visible (7th is best).
On the 10tn venus is a delight just before sun rise and by the 22nd jupiter will make good viewing low in the north west sky, when at least 4 of its 28 moons should be visible with a small telescope.
The new moon is on the 11th and the full on the 27.
For more information on the moon read 'Mrs Darley's Moon Mysteries'