The days are growing shorter, my friends, just as sure as my yard is a tapestry of crunching colored leaves. The air looks like the glitter filled daydream from the movie Legend, which is just one reason why I love the autumn season.
There is something special about the sunlight in fall. The yellow is rich, like an egg yolk, or melted butter, or slices of the last sweet summer squash found hidden in a corner of the garden as you start to till it over. It’s a warm light, a soft light, and a light so thick that it seems that you might be able to pull it together and use it as a pillow for one of those naps that seems to happen more often in October than anytime else.
The clouds are thick, the mists are thick, and the veils are thinning. I’ve been lighting candles more often already, and turning over tarot cards, seeking answers in the morass of mystery that seems to make the air rich and cloying. Night-time brings deep, vivid dreams and mornings are a bit harder to navigate.
My mind turns from the fun and frolic of the warm seasons and turns inward – my gaze goes inside the cool cave where the harvest has been stored and the firewood stacked. The crafts that keep us moving in the cold times sit there, my hands tingle to touch and move over the yarn, the cloth, the beads. My eyes want to see everything bathed in the glow of flickering fire instead of harsh, bright sunlight. The time is coming for story telling and singing, for community gathering and supporting each other through the cold and barren times.
That is one reason why I’ve been looking forward to the Herb Swap on Sunday. Not only do I get a chance to meet other herbalists in my area, but we all get a chance to strengthen a network larger than our homesteads encompass. We are reaching out to the water protectors at Standing Rock, and sending our spare herbs, supplies, and medicines to those healers who will be camping over winter to keep everyone healthy as they fight to keep their waters safe. To keep OUR waters safe.
Even if you don’t have money to spend, just sit and think about Standing Rock. Think with both your heart and mind. You are mostly water. Each of us are mostly water. Consider how much water matters to you, to us, to the whole world. Imagine not having water when you turn your tap. Imagine you live in Flint, Michigan and your taps are poisoned. Imagine you live in places where they dream of having taps in their house.
Water is life.
Let your prayers join and embolden those on the front lines if you can’t join them physically.
We’re in this together, folks. Like it or not.