Saturday, November 19, 2011

28 Dancing Green Ribbon

28 dancing green ribbon
Monday October 31, 2011:
"SCATTERED with the bleached heads of dried thistles,
the quiet heath, Is like a dark sky full of bright stars.
Through the veil of the cool breeze,
THE ground soft beneath my careful feet,
I walk in remembrance of my beloved dead.
A green satin ribbon dances,
spiralling in the wind,
a shining tribute to a life too soon extinguished.
The pavements are stencilled with the outline of fallen leaves. The rain
must have plastered them to its surface. The wind has set them free to drift
away, leaving only their shadow behind.
Lights twinkle from a pumpkin set upon a doorstep. A silent group of zombies
slip past on soft-soled feet. The quiet street echoes with a sudden burst of
cackling laughter.
The night is warm and cloudy. It does not rain. We seem to have the heath
pretty much to ourselves. Walking up the hill is like climbing the rounded
belly of the goddess. London disappears behind the screen of the trees and
fades into silence.
We have the ducks, geese, owls and rustling, scurrying creatures to
ourselves. The thistles have dried up. Their bleached heads shine in the
dark in a startling meadow of pale dots. The grass is long and springy.
It holds us as we walk.
The ash tree waits for us. We circle it and cast sacred space. We call our
beloved dead and our ancestors. The wind touches my skin. I feel the
spirits of those we've called, cluster around us. The wind whispers in the
grass like the sound of a silken robe swinging around a walkers legs.
Led by a solemn drum beat, we move through the veil and across the heath.
Dressed in her beautiful green ordination robe , she walks with me. She's
stately and composed. She exudes compassion and serenity.
As one, we step into each other's footsteps, linked by frail woollen ties to
remind us of each other. Far away to my left, I hear an owl hoot. Further
away, another answers. We swish our way through the dried thistle heads.
They snatch at our legs, snagging trousers, reluctantly releasing us to move
My mind chatters away, images of my beloved dead come to place themselves
before me. So many were so young. Their passing is forever a loss to the
world. But I am different because they were in my life. I can continue to
carry the memory of their wisdom with me on my journey forward.
We proceed circling through the field of thistles and back through the veil
to the ash tree. I hear her deep voice addressing me; I ingest what she says
though I am not conscious of the words. I immerse myself in the deepness of
her voice.
Hand in hand, we circle. Our beloved dead stand amongst us. I feel their
presence like the coolness of the gentle night air. We speak of our
experiences, of those we've lost and mourned and what they have given us.
I speak of the sense of compassion and serenity that Vijayatara has gifted
me. I tie a wide green satin ribbon to the tree in remembrance of her. It
swings and spirals in the breeze, as though bowing and stepping, turning and
reaching up in an exquisite arabesque of perfect grace. I cup it's moving,
waving self loosely so that I might feel its dance against my palms.
I sit on the soft grass. Somehow I feel sheltered here, closer to my beloved
dead, who cluster around me. We offer thanks to the spirits for being with
us this night and open our circle.
On the way down the hill I hear a duck cackle manically. The trees hold
their limbs up for us to pass under. We stand amongst fallen leaves to say
goodbye to the heath, taking the bond of our connection as protection to
guide our ways home.


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