Friday, November 30, 2012

The Rann of the Summoner

In spring-tide, when the snow had melted and the roots of things soaked in cold waters, newly flowing, a vision of the spirits came to me. I saw the snows vanish away and the green wave sweep the world. Imbolc turned to May in the sweep of the Queen’s sleeve and the crowd of the Noble Ones showed themselves to me.

I beheld the Queen of the Sidhe, in her beauty and strength, and with her the Chief of Clans. Their loveliness was both deep and glittering and if I gazed straight upon them they might seem to be a woman and a man. Yet their presence seemed to call away from form, and to draw me toward the Other.

“Tell me, mighty Queen of Spirits, whether it is better that form rise into essence, or that essence should descend into form.”
I stood with the Fire and Water in my hands, and dared to question her.

The Queen of the Land kissed the Chieftain, and he departed into the forest. Then she raised her arms and the robes fell away from her, so that her raiment became her beauty, and her beauty became her power, and her power became the Sovereignty of the Land. By her power she called form out of potential, and the clans of the Sidhe emerged.

It was said in ancient days that the People of the Mound loved to process and to parade. So they appeared to me, coming in troupes from every quarter. From out of stone and soil, from the green of the forest and the waves of the sea they rose and marched, totems and standards raised high. Pure white and storm-black they came, red as blood and green as sap. Like hounds and like ravens they came, like stags and songbirds and like flights of bees. From out of the halls of the Lord of the Dead came heroes, mighty ones of the spear and of the plow, and of the Druid’s Wand. Striding across hilltops or mounted on horses of lightning-shadow, they rode among the hosts. At their head came the Chieftain, in wizard’s array, hazel-wand white as he led the Host that he had called.

Shining folk of silver and gold streamed from above; wild, lovely and mighty. Winged and horned and hoofed, in cloaks of leaves and light and shadow they joined with the scuttlers and slitherers, with the small folk of stone and bark. Together they came, summoned by the sorcerer Chieftain at the command of the Queen of Elfhame.
I beheld the coming and goings of things in the dancing procession of the spirits. In the whirl and turn of the parades of the Sidhe I saw life fall into death, and spirit rise. I saw the spirits of the Sea rise into the Clouds and fly, then dive to Soil again and grow green. I beheld the constant flow of form as it swirled and knotted to decorate all the worlds.

The Queen rose into the air before me, and spoke, saying:

“See you – it is never still. The fallen must rise, and the high must descend. All is reflection and refraction and unceasing motion in all the worlds.”

So I understood that the Work of the Wise is to come to stand at the Center of that Great Dance. As that understanding filled me, the Queen and the Chieftain came together before me, and raised their own hands as if to invoke a greater power. Before me the vision flowed and shifted, and two greater beings appeared – the Mother of All, and the Lord of Wisdom.

The Keeper of Gates, the Teacher of Heroes came to me then, with the Mother of Fate all around us. Before me, my vision coming to earth, I beheld my nemeton; Well and Tree and Altar of Fire, the iron cauldron, the forked staff, the ring of stones and earth on which the Fire burned. Over the Bile, wreathed in the smoke of the flame, stood the God of Magic. Robed in shadow with symbols sewn in twilight, he bore his staff and cauldron. His uncut hair and beard flowed around him and the Other Light shone in his eyes.

“Tell me, Lord of Secrets, how it is that a fire of human kindling may be a gathering-place for the Gods.”

The Lord of the Between reached out his wand toward my forehead. It was as if a new vision came to me, as I first gazed into the well. My Cauldron of ritual water, thrice-gathered, was a deep-pooled spring, a Well of Blessing. I saw ancient folk approach their own Wells with offerings of silver and I saw the spirits come to the ancient Well, and to the cauldrons of magicians.

I saw the Cauldron at the Root of the World, ever flowing, watering that root with life’s juice. Up from that deep I beheld the Pillar of the World, that ancient Tree. It stands in the Sacrifice Ground, carved and gilded; it is the Center of the Worlds. It is the Ridgepole of the Heavens it’s presence the presence of the World Tree itself.

A web of roots in the Underworld Water, a web of branch and leaf in the Heavens’ Light; the Tree is the All-Connection, the power that joins all things together. In this way the Tree is like the Mother of All, whose love draws all things into the great embrace.

“The Well of Potentials waters the Tree, and the Tree gives wood. It is of the Wood of the Tree that the fire is laid,” spoke the voice of the Red Lord of Wisdom, “The spark of the Fire is the Elder Spark, passed down through ages, hearth to high place. For it is the spark of the hearth that lights the Fire of Sacrifice. From
 the clans comes the spark and to them it returns with the shining blessing.”

“As it is in the Wood of the World, so let it be in your heart. Your flesh must die, and continual death sends memory flowing like water into the Well. Your living flesh is rooted in that very Water and the Heaven’s Light kindles the Fire in you. The Fire gathers the elements of the world, they dance in the way that is you.”

So I understood that the Cosmos is in my very being and that I am made of the parts of the World. From the Fire and the Water I saw the Plain of the World extend, from the Fire in the Four Airts to the wild Sea all around and the dome of the Sky over all.

The Procession of spirits made their circuit of the Middle World, turning rightward round the Tree. The Mother of All enthroned herself above the Well and the Lord of Wisdom stood with his Wand at the Fire of the Sacrifice. Thus I understood that it is the bond of blood and spirit between mortal folk and the spirits that brings the spirits to our Fires. It is the Mother’s Love and the Teacher’s Wisdom that inform us as we call the spirits, and it is by that same wisdom, love and power that the spirits respond.

For I time I rested in this vision, and greatly was I blessed by it. O Children of Earth, in this vision may you be blessed in turn. May the Strength of the Tree be in you, and the strength of the Well. May the strength of the Fire’s Light bring your best fate into the world. May the Mother and the Keeper of Gates open the way to the Gods and may the Host of the Spirits march in answer to your skillfull song.

Thus may we remember the Work of the Wise!


Jason McDonald said...

This is just simply amazing. Thank you so much for posting it.

GreenFlame said...

Thank you for sharing such grace and beauty and truth.

Anonymous said...

A vision within a vision; that was very nice! I find your posts inspirational and would like to extend an award to you. Congratulations - you win! Geeeez does that sound like a pop-up or what? Anyway I linked to your blog and passed the award to you in this blogpost: BB~ Storybook