Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tracking the Sprowl of the ;Land

The Sun casts a cold single eye across the moors. It is early November, and in sharp contrast to the oddly balmy last days of October, there is a clean chill in the air, and a quality to the light that expresses the intention of impending Winter. A good day to wander the land and to partake of the life force that huddles in the liminal, magical places. Coiled like a beautiful serpent, sprowl gathers and collects in the "places in between" where the line 'twixt the earth and the other realms of existance is thin. To some this is "ley" energy, a matrix of lines of power running in alignment, and whilst Sprowl is an energy, its body is more amorphous, and its power more sublime; in order to use it, you must build a relationship with it, and like any sutble force, Sprowl must be treated with respect and deference.

The first frosty mists hang across the field on the Kings Walk like a departing ghost, and the glassy beads of dew quivver as if gently touched by an unseen finger. There above the field is my quarry, a style in a predominantly hawthorn hedge, planted hundreds of years ago and now home to a myriad of lifeforms, insect, mammal, bird and fey. The flustered clacking of a startled pheasant kick starts the adrenalin as I leave the stoney path, and up onto the slippy edges of the field. Im up on the style, perched like a novice gymnast in a move that needs more practice, but im comfortable enough and wrapped warmly enough,just to sit and gather my thoughts,, and breathe in the extraordinary beauty and otherworld quality of the land before me.

I feel a tingle, a friction of static in the air. I welcome the coming of the spirit of this place, I give praise and thanks for being here, I ask for permission and protection to the guardian, and thus prepared and the way opened, I settle into the reverie that is the embrace of the Serpent energy of Albion, and the genus loci of the hedge and boundary. I have with me several objects and tools for the collection of Sprowl; sacred and trusty friends that by their continued use and constancy will serve me well and know my methods. For an animist, such as myself, all that lives, and ever has lived has life force, and is treated with due honour and courtesy, as befits any of natures creations. I chant my charm of reaping and gathering, letting the energy flow to me and rest within these holy familiars. Coming out of the dreamstate and into this world again, I give thanks and praise for the great honour afforded me, and offer bread, seeds and wine in the spirit of reciprocation which is central to my path.

Im feeling chilly, although the Sun has risen and the mist has long since disapated, I have been sat on a fence, in the same position for about..well I dont know how long. Time has no relavence in these matters. Stamping my feet, to make sure and solid connection with this realm, I walk, a tad more biskly, back along the boney path of tree roots. Birds are singing, although ore muted than in the feeding frenzy of the breeding season, Crows are calling and carousing above the newly mucked fields, and so I wend my way home, thankful for the beauty of the day,and the precious gifts given by the serpent mother.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Frost insinuates the iron hard earth, and the stoney outrops like cabouchon jewels, glint in the lowering sun. Boney as long-ago skinned knuckles, the worn tread of the Ancient pass, offers up its snaking spine before me. Beneath my feet are the imprints of a millenia of journeying, a layered time cake of footfalls and wanderings, occasionaly glimpsed in a moment at twilight, or whispered on the wind when she barrels down the hillsides. In the wilderness of the heart, the Pass is a naked and vulnerable route. As darkness seeps across the raw and jagged outcrops, Shadows of travellers past call their dogs to heel, and gather the herd. A fragment of voices, a spark of torch and candle, as the procession of ages keeps vigil beside the horse and cart bearing the body of a loved one, the final walking of the pass, the artery that crosses the high body of the fells, becomes the silver thread, that when the destination is reached, is severed.