Monday, 7 November 2011
Beltane Tide 2011
Welcome to the Beltane-tide. We have it all here - deep red metallic candles, rose-sandalwood-frankincense-woodruff incense, a magnificent declamation from the Stag of Seven Tines and a priestess hobbling around the borders of her land because of a bee sting.
It's only the second time in my life that a Sister has actually had the effrontery to sting me: the first time I was about 10 years old, in England, running barefoot in the garden at Wokingham. The poor Bumble Bee who my enormous foot came down upon had her revenge. On Saturday evening I was dead heading the Thug Rose Number 2 and, although shod in slops, a bee found my foot once more. The pain was, well, excruciating.
Warren applied a thick paste of mustard and a professional crepe bandage after my howling had died down, which drew most of the venom out of the wound. But today it's still red and a bit sore. So I suppose I'll be limping around the Boundaries at twilight, swinging the censer and brandishing the Athame. I only hope all the Sisters have cleared the area beforehand.
In the meantime, the Belfire has been extinguished and relit, the Guardians called to renew their protection of home and family, and yes, the God who Sets the Head Afire with Smoke has proclaimed His presence here.
We continue to tumble into the Summer with all its promise of heat waves, wind-downed trees and blowing up of tolling gantries. And then there's the Beltane Chocolate Cake...
Photo: Bee from the Beltane Ranch. Copyright Joseph Readdy