Today was Lammas, or the first harvest festival. In total, there are three (four really if you count “secular” holidays) harvests. The first harvest is always the most low-key and special in my practice. I think I don’t go “all out” for Lammas because it’s just so HOT. I mean people were talking about a “break” from the heat today and it was 95 degrees (F). However hot and dry it is outside, I still notice that the nights are cooler. There is something crisp in the air. Colors seem darker: the apples on the apple tree are taking on ruddy hues. Late Summer, Indian Summer, and early fall are by far my favorite times of year. It’s so beautiful outside, I love everything about it. I can’t wait! I don’t want to share this, I don’t want to pomp it up… I just want to sit on the deck with a glass of wine, tour some vineyards, stargaze, and savor the moment.
Mockingbird sings in the middle of the night, all his songs are stolen so he hides… He sings them for you special, he knows you’re afraid of the dark. Come on Sorrow, take you’re own advice: hide under the bed, turn out the light.
Unfortunately, it’s been very dry this year. In fact, where I am in Missouri is in “severe drought.” Sunday, signaling the start of fall it rained for a few hours in the morning, the rain took away the dead heat breaking three solid week of triple digit temperatures. For me, it was the start of fall, a break in the heat – the cleansing rain. I totally sat outside in it. It was enough to rain to cool down the pool – but not enough to hold the garden up for more than a day without watering. I’m not complaining though, I realize out west people have it far worse. Our farms are still making some produce where I know some folks have none. I am grateful for what I do have, though I worry because it doesn’t seem to be quite “enough” for everyone. Even though I was never a global warming/climate change denier I think this situation makes it clear to everyone that it doesn’t matter what you think about the situation we need to do something. The debate is not about some theoretical future, this is about how to best survive in the near future. Corn has been pulled and stockpiled, cattle will go to slaughter soon, beef and animal product prices will drop when they flood the market: and then what? I’m not trying to be all doom and gloom, I really want a positive solution to come from people pre-planning. That’s just how I am: I am a preparer. This Lammas though, after such a drought nationwide, seems more pensive. Although I am in a better place than most, there weren’t enough berries and early fruits to make jam so, I didn’t do that this year. I could have gone to the store and bought fruit but that would be expensive.
In an effort to do something I just lit a few candles, am about to enjoy some wine, a small low-key ritual (but no fire, too dry fire warnings are out all over) and use the epic deck to do a World Tree reading. Last night, I charged my new deck and gilded the edges. I meant to work with the deck at midsummer, but didn’t get a chance to while in Michigan. I didn’t know what to do. I thought about making a new tarot bag but in the end, I think the kind of embroidery I want will take more than a day to do. My goal will be to have all my decks nicely housed by Mabon. I took a look at the new deck and decided it needed gilded edges. It was a nice way to get to know the cards, and small magical way to celebrate the harvest. Happy harvesting to everyone! I hope this time brings you what you need.