rise and root



The Flame Haired Solstice Dreamer

Cold winter brings the Everfrost and jewels every tree
In a forest new as birth and old as old can be
A flame~haired dreamer wanders there and shelters from the wind
And spins her dreams around the trees to break the ties that bind
She takes her thread and spins anew and how the Greenwood smiles
As she spins a spell for freedom and for her spirit Wylde

The dreamer finds an ancient oak and shelters in his lee
In a forest new as birth and old as old can be
Tis summer now and birdsong weaves its magick through her spells
And humming bees drum drowsily in the foxglove's bells
The dreamer sits beneath the oak with yarn upon her knee
And spins and knits and weaves her dreams and sets her spirit free

"When birds fall from the sky and the animals are dying, a new tribe of people...shall come unto the earth from many colors, classes, creeds, who by their actions and deeds shall make the earth green again. they will be known as the warriors of the Rainbow"

Hopi Prophecy

~drumming up the moon*earth mother & her green lord~

it seems right that this extended post should be in three parts


i have spent three days (thee again) on this post, getting no-where and becoming distracted until i finally ran out of possible words and thoughts and so gave up.

this morning i was up at that liminal time when the veil between worlds is thin and i stood in my garden surrounded by the scent of valerian and bird song, i heard the last conversation of an owl and when i heard the first morning calls of the crows i knew it was time to come in and write.

i admit this has been a very a difficult post to write, i think because it was part of something...
part of something larger over several days, weeks even, that caused a slight shift in my spiritual path and i keep having to stop and ponder, journal, ask my cards for more clarity.

i think at the end of the day it is all starts with labels
the labels we assign to ourselves, ones that are assigned to us by others

early on in our spiritual paths we label ourselves to fit into a specific category~a category that we actually wish for ourselves, that we think we should be, that maybe popular culture tells us we should be no matter what our heart tells us. we may fall into a path through our heart or through our reading. maybe we go through this process of labelling as a natural process that finally leads us to something that we find fits us and our spiritual practice perfectly

our spiritual path could take us through several 'incarnations' as we seek that perfect fit~that perfect place where we can stand alone or among a group of other pagans and know that we are on our 'right' path~the path that the universe intended us to be on. we no longer have the need, the urge, to seek any further.
more importantly we no longer feel we are wrong if we follow our own path because we realise that no matter how many books are written, no matter how many online articles and blogs are written instructing us in a particular path, no matter how many groups or orders are out there...at the end of the day we just do not know, there is no complete, written, ancient text that gives the whole, complete information for any particular path.
so any guilt/confusion we feel from not fitting any proscribed criteria, at being on a truly independent path, sloughs away like winters dead leaves and we feel all shiny and new. brimming with a new confidence that nothing can take away because we have travelled, maybe for many years, and we have undertaken our own form of initiation and come out the other side knowing that it is
right, that we have stood in the dark and been spoken to and told that 'yes this is right for you...'

 i sit here realising that i have gone through this process and found myself at this place, this time...this place that fits so well and feels comfortable, feels
and the final part of my 'initiation' took place over several days and  places...

i understand that the final part of my initiation started at the camp with a small private ritual during which the moon rose to the south while we were in our candle lit circle. it had not been planned that way, my beautiful friends who had written out the ritual had not consulted any almanac to find the exact time of moonrise and the place they chose came from the positive energy given out by a tree.
but as we stood in our sacred circle i noticed a small hint of light on the horizon and gently nudged my friend, nodding towards the light, one by one we all came to notice the rising of the moon and the ritual stopped while we all stood watching for a while, laughing and hugging and the rest of the ritual ended under the light of the full moon.
 the feelings that grew in me during this ceremony for friends were feelings of a circle slowly closing, that the ends were nearly meeting, that my unconscious searching was nearly at an end.


the following evening as we sat around a large camp fire with music and laughter filling the air we again sat and watched the moon rise~this time was the drumming up of the moon, where those with shaman drums ran towards the moon, drumming and ululating wildly and it was a feral sound that made me feel almost complete...another part of that circle was closed


while in Glastonbury we went to the

 white spring
where i filled a bottle full of the water from the spring from which i take a little sip first thing in the morning and last thing at night and when i am close to running out its the perfect time to return.
once my bottle was full swampy and i went into the dark, chilly temple

as no technology is allowed these photos from the white spring website

within the temple lies three shrines~to Brigid, the guardian of the sacred springs where a  flame is always burning~to Our Lady of Avalon beside the healing pool and at the portal to the Otherworld lies the shrine of the King of the World of Faries.

if you haven't been to the White Spring it is so very difficult to describe~the spring gushing out from the rocks and filling the pools, the sacred water flowing over the top of the pools and flowing in rivulets along the floor.
the temple is lit only by candles and the sound of flowing water fills your ears but still there is a silence that fills you, a sacred silence that first fills your mind and then fills your body.
but it is not an empty silence, it is a silence filled with joy, with voices calling to you in welcome.
but these are ancient voices, new voices to me.
Brigid/Brighidh has been with me for a while now, slowly introducing herself with signs until i could no longer ignore them and she was here but there was another.
this other was older, far older~i am talking mother goddess, earth mother, Danu and Dôn.
and of course the essence of the lord of the wildwood, the green man, was there too, laughing among the flowing waters, making sure he was not forgotten.
i walked slowly around the temple, watching the spring flow into the pools from deep under the Tor, standing before each shrine, bathing my face in the ice cold water, my body was almost vibrating, humming from the feelings i was having, feelings that i was being given as a gift from a deity so much older than i imagined i would ever find.

i finally, and very reluctantly stepped out of this comforting, dark, watery temple~i wanted to stay there much, much longer and immerse myself in the pools, i stepped out into sunshine feeling transformed and that the circle more complete.


the following day i stood at Avebury and felt a huge sense of peace fall over me and i lay for a while in the long meadow grass beside the great stones of the outer circle trying to absorb all the energy i could.

a little later found me walking the hill up to the West Kennet Long Barrow with that great symbol of the goddess, Silbury Hill to my back. this burial chamber is truly ancient...think back around 5000 years and then add a smidge of maybe another half a millennia...

i took a few other photos from this point but it doesn't feel right in posting them

within the burial chamber, as i walked though past the north and south chambers and into the rounded west chamber at the very end  i was getting the same feeling i had at the White Spring~there were no  threat in the darkness, if anything i  again felt comfort that the great earth mother had welcomed me into this ancient chamber and acknowledged me, allowing my time there to be uninterrupted. i held my hands out to the stones feeling an ancient vibration and greeted the ancestors.

this time, as i stepped out of this ancient and sacred place, the ends of the circle that had started to close days before finally joined together and the circle of my initiation was complete.

of course it doesn't end there, it never does.

i came home and still vibrating, humming from my experiences, looked though my journal.
i went back over weeks, to entries where i written down my card readings, the notes and musings i had made.
there was so much, so many words set into sentences and in the end i had to try to collate it into one easy to read page made up of single, repeated words
 the same things that kept coming up reading after reading and although i was aware of this as the days went by it wasn't until i returned home and looked again with new eyes that it all made sense...

interaction with spirit, ancestors, Brighid, Earth Goddess, Brighidh, Arianhrod, gifts of the Spirits
earth serpent, serpents, primal wisdom, deep soul knowledge
inner journey of spirit
rebirth, transformation, new paths,
springs, wells, river flow,
 weaving a web of life, synchronicity,
the embrace of spirits and their blessings

looking at it in this way i let out a huge sigh~i was not going crazy and reading my cards wrong, i wasn't 'inventing' something out of nothing. everything over the preceding weeks, months had cumulated into these events, at these sacred sites, some places i had not intended to visit on this journey, but timing and luck had me going to all of them.

reading back on this i feel nothing but joy that i have been taken by the hand and guided on this journey and although the circle has been completed i am still on a great journey.
i am looking at things from a new perspective, its almost as if the decades have rolled back and i am starting anew. which, of course, in a way i am, but with considerably more wisdom than i had before and with a maturity that makes me feel i can walk the path that the great earth mother and her wild green consort has laid before me and be open to anything that crosses my path.
i am looking at my sacred garden with new eyes, at my altar inside with new eyes and feeling grateful that i can turn a little aside from the norm that is given us on our pagan paths and forge a new path, with new ways of doing things, knowing that the simple rituals of my life are guided by the great earth mother.

i have seen people moaning that the taking of photos and film should be allowed in the White Spring Temple and why is there no proper lighting to see properly? well if they feel this then they do not get it and should maybe stay away from what is a highly sacred place to many, who do not want the flash and whir of cameras and mobile phones to disturb their mediations...or even better why do they they not discard this technology, kick of their shoes and wait and see what may happen to them in the darkness.


Sandies' Patch said...

Beautiful post. XXX

Becky said...

Wow, a powerful post and a powerful experience for you. I havent been to the white spring, but want to on our next trip to glastonbury. After my first trip to glastonbury in the easter holidays, I found that my 'path' had veered onto a slightly different course and I think this is something to be embraced and to go with the ebb and flow of our spirituality. I cant really explain it any other way.
PS I have a new blog littleriverwanderer.blogspot.co.uk

laoi gaul~williams said...

thank you both...Becky i am so glad the link is working, i have been and and forward looking for you!!!

Laura said...

This is so beautiful! What a wonderful experience you had and I thank you for sharing it with us. If I'm ever able to get to the UK I will add the White Springs to my list of places I want to see.

Becky said...

Hi Laoi, no I didnt get any water, didnt realise you could. I will do next time I visit. beloved and I are already talking and provisionally planning our next trip x

Susan Ealding said...

Beautiful my darling girl... You have found you- your way, your life path... X

Miss Robyn said...

you have no idea what this post means for me today. xo

All things share the same breath~the beast, the tree, the man, the air shares its spirit with all the life it supports.

Chief Seattle

Johney Gaul~1915

Johney Gaul~1915
1890-17 september 1918~France