Lessons I’ve been learning recently all came to the fore and were confirmed for me a few nights ago in a nurturing Samhain gathering of like minded souls. There was a fire, Irelands oldest stone circle, blessed water from St Gobnaits holy well, elderberry juice, poetry, songs, blessings, time to reflect and let go of what we no longer need and most of all a deep genuine willingness from all present to show up with a desire to re connect, value and appreciate our land and ancestors.
This was my first time to read and share my poetry to a group and when I was invited I knew that I must attend. Now I realise the connections made and lessons learned have hit me deeply at a soul level, an awakening of sorts.
For too long I’ve walked a path that was not mine, not true to my own soul and life purpose. I’ve tried to fit in and change myself in so many situations at the cost of my dreams and happiness. As this is Samhain, a time of letting go and moving forward to preparing our souls for darkness and healing I feel I’ve always been hesitant about change. Yet now I’ve finally found a door, grabbed it by its handle, opened it and burst through. And it feels like home.
The difficult part for some people is that not everyone or everything is fitting through this new door. It’s difficult to let go of people who make you feel bad for growing without them. Their need for your presence in their lives pulls you backwards and forwards and yet we know we must step through over this new threshold without them. This is the time.
I have to go back a little bit to mention something very significant that is linked to current events. A month ago just before the full moon I made elderberry syrup. I picked elderberries, hawthorn, sloes from our gardens hedgerows. I knew I had to make this, there was an urgency that I did not understand. After making the elderberry syrup I was inspired to write a poem, the words just started to flow. Words I did not fully understand either. At a Samhain gathering a few days ago as we sat close to the Grange Stone Circle in the dark by a fire that very poem and the elderberry juice I made was enjoyed by the group.
Why am I telling you this? Because anyone who has self doubts like I have, anyone who thinks what they create is not good enough then believe me when I say this it is more than enough. I’ve learned that our words can help to heal wounds. We don’t even have to know why or fully understand it. We just have to make sure we write them, speak them share them. They will find their way to the souls who need them.
Sometimes we feel lost, feel we don’t belong, feel we are amongst people who don’t get us. Then when least expected we are found or we find them, it’s not always clear. But the main thing is keep travelling and you will know in your soul when you have arrived.
On this rainy Halloween night I’m filled with gratitude for the people I have in my life, the old and the new, the ones who “get me”. I’m especially filled with gratitude to those who have recently come into my life and encourage me to keep writing. These are my soul tribe that I will continue to breathe in. And with one big exhale I breathe out all who make me feel bad for growing without them.
I’m finishing with the poem “Elder’s Blood” that I’ve mentioned in this piece.
Thank you for reading.
I held a gathering of elderberries in my hands,
watched their dark insides pulse through my squeezing fingers.
As the drops stained my clothes, I knew this was the fermented juice
of our ancestors wishing bones
rising back up from the earth that long ago
buried their longings, their wishes, their secrets
until the roots and sap of trees poured
their power within roadside hedgerows.
Now we see how you shine, feel how you soar
in sky high elderberries, sweet hawthorn and the blood red wild rose.
I drink its darkness, lips stinging
as elders blood sinks
into my being.
I know this is the earth’s prayer
gifted to me
to swallow memory
and write their longing bones free.