Waking from a dream featuring vicious men with sharp knives, I decide to spend the day not working at home, rather than not working at the office.
Grandfather Anderson is still hanging out in the background of my mind - patient, smiling - I think I'll be making him a bowl of oat porridge with butter and salt for the Samhain Dumb Supper.What would Mom like? A Snacker bar, or a mango? Will settle that detail later.
Having procured the black candles at an exorbitant price from the local esoteric store (R100 per spherical candle? I'll take the R20 pillar ones instead, thanks, and that's only because the Pick 'n Pay Hyper seems never to have heard of such a tacky item as actual black candles) I turn my attention to the Sabbat incense.
My standard Cunningham doesn't give a recipe for incense for this particular festival. Vexed, as I am every year by this same issue, I decide to make the generic Sabbat Incense with a twist. Frankincense and Myrrh, two-to-one ratio; two parts Benzoin (need to replenish the Benzoin!); half a part each of Bay Leaf, Fennel, Thyme and Pennyroyal; a quarter part each of Rue, Artemisia, Chamomile and Rose petals. Then the interesting part - I do not now, nor ever have had, any Solomon's Seal. I solve the problem differently each time I bump up against it. Solomon's Seal: Feminine, Saturn, Water. Out with the other Cunningham, the Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs.
So. Cypress (or in my case, Juniper) seems an appropriate scent for the festival of the Ancestors. Saturn, Feminine, Earth. Need some Water. Tonka, for the Love that binds my predecessors to me, and me to them.
An hour later, the granite mortar and pestle is well stained and ingrained with the resinous substance of the scent of this Samhain. To be burned starting tonight, moon in Cancer.
I'm hoping, but not too fervently, for some clarification on the dream I had on Sunday night - the night before we heard of the Flying Pig Flu - which has disturbed me deeply. I was present beside the sea. Now I know that in dreams, water usually represents emotional and spiritual issues, but sometimes..well..sometimes water is just that - Water. In this case, the Sea, and my dreaming mind knew this.Suddenly, a bloom of fire where the water meets the sky. A tower of flame on the horizon. Red sparks starting to shower across the water. And I, upon the shore, desperately afraid for my Beloveds, and trying to shield them under my unfolded wings.
Top Pic: My altar, last Imbolc
Bottom Pic: Found here
Update: Some new pictures of Taranis were sent to us by his Mom. Here he is having apparently eaten the edge of his kennel: