• Artistic Expressions,  Poetry

    The Burden

    by Jenne Micale How do we carry our burdens? You cast your eyes down at the horseblock marking the sparkle of gravel and then up, defiant, a mare tousling her mane as she runs free. You accept, take it upon your back as broad as a pony, the breath labored until you find the balance and then the weight can be borne. Footfall by slow footfall to the mansion door Until the passenger dismounts laughing. You offer a steeled smile, run the sweaty back of your hand across a sun-browned brow and then return to the horseblock to wait. The journey back: so light, the breeze drying Your hair with…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 7

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6 My partner Dominic had just completed his Ph.D. at Swansea University and had unexpectedly been offered a job at Cornell University, in Ithaca NY.  A university of such prestige that even here in this little corner of Wales, you could not have failed to have heard of its name. We were very reticent to leave our snug little blue cottage in Wales, to travel thousands of miles to a new country and essentially begin anew. Professor Lehman in the crop and soil science department at Cornell was very insistent on having Dominic join his team. And…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 6

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5 At  Reclaiming camps a variety of experiential events always occurred, all were themed around the creation or fortifying of spiritual growth. One of the experiences that are offered by Reclaiming teachers is commonly known as a ‘path’. Paths were week-long metaphysical courses and having read the description of all four offerings at this year’s camp, I was torn. It would not be an easy choice to make, all the Paths held a beguiling charm for me, but, in the end, I decided to take the Priestess path. The Priestess path was being presented by Anne Marie, a teacher…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 5

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 Suddenly, I found myself at the bottom of a sloping heather moorland, sandwiched between a multitude of crowded dark trees, they stood like sentries on either side of the moor, their depth unknowable to me. A bright sheen of light floated atop the dense heather, illuminated by the bright full moon overhead. I felt a sudden sense of panic, I was alone in the middle of a stormy forest, in the darkness, lost, I had never climbed this far up the valley before, even in the daylight, and for a brief moment I cursed at my own folly and lack…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 4

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 “If we walk far enough,” says Dorothy, “we shall sometimes come to someplace.” -L. Frank Baum The dark skyline of frenzied trees bowing and swaying in the quickening winds was my first vision of the Forest of the Glen of the Downs, Co Wicklow. It was the early evening, the twilight hours, and I had just walked the four-mile road from Kilpedder, where sat the first organic farm in Ireland, my place of work. It was a part of Ireland that was imbued with an old-world rural charm, a feeling that Dublin city, only an hour’s drive to the North, could no…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 3

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall Part 1, Part 2 An idea formed in my mind, I needed to leave a piece of material on a tree branch as a gift, and so, I ripped a piece of what was, in all honesty, a random piece of cloth from the dress and tied it around one of the lower branches of the tree. As I did so, I gave thanks to the spirit of the tree for guiding me to this sacred and beautiful place. Now, as is the case with any tale worth telling, the news of Fionnuala’s and my discovery began to spread. The land itself was owned by a wonderful…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 2

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall Part 1 In my dream, I had envisioned a little wooden chalet, and flowing adjacent to the chalet, winding off into the indiscernible distance, was a small, clear stream. From its source flowed out a vibrant little Spring, gently rising up from the ground in the likeness of an ancient water Goddesses, in-state and awaiting an audience. At her head grew a gnarly ancient Elder tree, which kept a careful watch over the court. With my dreaming eye, I had drawn closer to the Spring, and as I did so, and without warning, up from somewhere deep within the Elder tree at its head leaped, a dark silhouetted…

  • Personal Essay

    Rites Of Passage – Part 1

    By Gaia Woolf-Nightingall “Who in the world am I?’ Ah, that’s the great puzzle!” -Lewis Carroll. I was always fascinated by the elemental forces that whirled daily around my body. The sting of the Winter winds, as they whipped past my cheek, the cool touch of the Spring rains as they poured down from the sky and soaked through my long hair. The healing warmth of the Summer Sun and the gentle caress of the Earth beneath my feet. These were the things that filled my childhood with joy. The Elements were my friends and my guides as I traveled, far and wide, on daring and intrepid adventures, through boggy cornfields…

  • Poetry

    Rhiannon

    By Carole Weave-Lane Upon a moonbeam the Goddess Rhiannon Stood upon the wings of birdsong Enchanting the rocks in the mountain to part Liberating the wild herd Silver flanks and manes flyin’ Hooves that pounded with ghostly precision Silver on the wind   Wild  their eyes, tails broomstick stiff Frothing at the mouth, Galloping down the mountain side Through the hamlet of sightless dreamers Snorting sea spray in the wind Silver on the wind.   Padding on the black rocks so sharp Leaping into oblivion Captured by the seas so wild  a cauldron of seething ribbons As  Rhiannon flew amongst them   Drifting upon birdsong Becoming one with the herd…

  • river
    Poetry

    The Water by Morrigan Hunter

    As I rose for the first time in an eternity and Ambled out my door and felt the warmth hit my near translucent skin and begin to heat it The smothering heat engulfed me and I struggled to breathe, short of breath from lack of activity I worked my way trudging toward the side of the river to escape the sun into the shady portion of the bank. As I reached the river bank I inhaled the smell of thick air tinged with marine life. It hung heavy in the sticky humidity. I leaned over and decided to peer down, And I found that as I gazed into the murky…