28 October 2014

The Great Relay

When October hands off the baton to November,
earthly time stretches to  a l m o s t  breaking point
and I see beyond this material world
into under- and over-world spirit.
Woodland sprites lure me to ritual,
challenge my terror of dead ones
 and my caution near magic,
and compel me to where
gods know each other
and God welcomes
travel back
and forth
belief systems.
Here, safe and holy,
I name my cat Wicca,
invoke Gaia, He-cat-e,
Saints and Jesus, eat with my
dead, circle and drum with sisters.
We then pray for the New Year and record
wishes on snips of cloth and papers to burn
away or plant deeply in next year’s grounding earth
for nurture until Winter hands the baton to Spring.

Copyright © 2014 S.L.Chast


Grace said...

The rituals of the dead and waiting for the new year ~ Frankly I can't wait for spring to come faster, skipping winter, smiles ~

An interesting prompt Susan, thanks for the heads up ~

Mary said...

It is a good season to see beyond the material world & to lose the terror of the dead. Two times I was in Mexico during their celebration of Day of the Dead, which more affirms the cycle of life rather than expressing sadness. And in my church on Sunday we will celebrate All Saints Day & light candles in honor of those who have gone before. I think that as October hands its baton to November, it is a good time to recognize such transitions to the other side.

Sreeja said...

very interesting things here.....the changes and the attitude......Nice!!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I loved every line of this, the transitions, the cycles, the fears, and their overcoming..........fall to winter, winter to spring......a passage beautifully penned.

Jae Rose said...

Even the shape of this hourglass is certain...time pours through the timer but we can celebrate..with our sisters..and cats (great cat name ;)

humbird said...

Love your hourglass/1-13 poem. Very magical! Love the image of baton handing to November, and later - to spring...

totomai said...

interesting form. i read this one loudly and i felt that at the center my voice just soften. must be the form.
the four seasons will never end. just turn it upside down once it's over.

Unknown said...

my favorite part was passing the baton to spring - I am not looking forward to winter (after the last one.)
I love your symbol of the hour glass - time is sifting (slow or fast)

Laurie Kolp said...

I really like this, Susan... and the hourglass shape, too.

Nicholas said...

i kind of like the rituals and the deities you have listed in your poem here Susan. reminds me so much of the 90s where i was a teenager emulating The Craft, reading Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, and listening to Shawn Colvin's Sunny Came Home.and Sarah Mcclachlan's Building a Mystery. Those were the days... lol

Eileen T O'Neill ..... said...


November affords a quality time to remember those who have died, quite aside from any other significant dates of memories.
A simple candle adds to the thought.


rallentanda said...

The rituals celebrating death are interesting in all the religions As everyone else has said the shape form in an hour glass suits the poem.

Gen Giggles said...

Yes these days do seem to stretch. They are never quite what we expect as we blend traditions. Well written.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Nice to be eclectic, including saints and Jesus! Andrew always used to include Jesus too, and I often do. Congratulations on the accmplished form.

Anonymous said...

This is my favorite time of year for reflection and mindfulness -- the quiet beauty of transition and a grasp of mortality and/or immortality ... with definite connection to spirituality. The shape lends to the texture and visual image of the words.

Arathi Harihar said...

very nice representation of how death can become a celebration ..loved it Susan

Old Egg said...

It is the dark longer nights that do it; then those of the other worlds have greater power and the sustaining energy of the sun is weakened. The cold winds whistle, the house creaks and we hear knocking at the door and rapping of the windows and we know we are not safe anymore. Just saying...