Sunday, January 31, 2010

A poem for Brighid


Feel free to copy the following to your blog/facebook/website and spread
the word. Let poetry bless the blogosphere once again!

WHAT: A Bloggers (Silent) Poetry Reading

WHEN: Anytime February 2, 2010

WHERE: Your blog

Brighid is the goddess of fire and the forge, of healing and poetry. On February 2 we celebrate Imbolc (yeah, and groundhog day, which does have pagan orogins). Imbolc is a fire feast in the middle of winter, a time to look for signs of spring, to look forward to the coming growing season.

On Imbolc we choose or rededicate ourselves to our magical names. I think I'll stick with Camlin. Any disagreements?? We can also dedicate ourselves to a goddess for the year - preferably a goddess who embodies the qualities that we want to emphasize or work with in the coming months.

I've chosen two goddesses. Because I need to work closely with two elements in the coming months - fire (passion, sexuality,inspiration and creativity) and earth (home, earth, money, career, the body). I am such an air person already - I need to ground myself and stretch my wings.

My fixation with poetry right now seems to be no accident. I'm more in tune with the wheel of the year than I realized.  These are my poems for Brighid:

 (Poem #1)  Blessing

May You
huddled, screaming,
pulsing with survival,
grab what you can,
shove forward,
gape at emptiness
as death floats around you.

maim, shoot, destroy
deny another,
suffer harm
while darkness encroaches
safe space, leaving
empty-belly, aching, gnawing

May You
waiting patient,
life in tatters,
shards of wood, bodies,
debris floating alongside
your sodden, hungry,
diseased self

despair with shock,
grief, anger
too dry for tears
wanting only breath, sustenance, life,
as you, animal that we are
slake your growing
to live.

In my coven we have a beautiful tradition. At the end of each ritual, we share grape and grain. We make wishes for each other, based on what happened at the ritual, and we say "May you never hunger," and "may you never thirst." I wrote the above poem in 1995, as I watched CNN and cried over Katrina.  And now there's Haiti....

Poem #2  Relic

She clings to them,

bare millimeters of hair
scraps of cloth
faded, sky-blue cut
with pinking shears, folded,
encased in plastic wrapped
with silver hung
on a chain
around her neck.

This one cured a child's illness.
That one caused
a blind woman to see
when she fingered
its loveliness and sighed.
Oh, and he,
he mortified himself daily
spoke his sacrifice
for the sake of redemption
and died
in a state of grace,
having eaten nothing for
more than three years.
Except for holy flesh
and holy blood.

What is my holy?
Shall I hang it about
my neck, a relic?
A relict, bereft
of all things earthy
and worthy, must I forsake
the flesh of loving and
the blood of
fiery longing?

I wear my passion
like a holy cross forged
with molten metals.
Now it shall burn through
my skin, permeate my blood
be carried through my body
down to earth
into air.
Surround me
with the glow
of all that is.

( I wrote this yesterday in Tim Hortons - for those of you who are reading from any state other than Michigan, think Dunkin' Donuts...for some odd reason, I do my best writing in busy, noisy places.)


Making Space said...

Beautiful poems. I'd love to choose a goddess - wondering how to go about that...

reeflightning said...

wonderful words camlin! your passion burns across the blogospere. thank you for the pleasure and the inspiration.

m.m.sugar said...

I have been reading this post since first published trying to find the right words.


Kalisis Rising said...

Ooooh, this is also incredibly beautiful! Thank you.

I wish I had read this earlier, I'd have used (stolen?) parts of it for the ceremony we had tonight. As it was, the pagan prayer invoking Brighid that I always use sufficed. :) Sometimes I like the routine of saying the same words on the same day every year.

Camlin said...

MS - what I usually do is think about the things I want to bring into my life and the qualities I want to manifest over the year. This year, I have two primary goals - the first is to connect more solidly with the earth close to where I live. When I moved, I lost that connection - my planting and gardening has suffered as a result. So I want to know my outdoor space better, become connected to the trees, soil and growing space. Gaia was my first goddess. As well, there are three main things I want to focus on this year - creativity, passion and healing. Brigid was a natural choice for me. There's tons of online information, and a whole pantheon of goddesses to choose from.

Kalisis Rising: There is a lot of beauty in the repetition of words and phrases. I've been with the same coven for five years now - we always cast the circle and call the directions in the same way - in ways that are unique to our group. |It's like coming home.

to all of you: thanks. I'm having trouble sharing my internal process right now. I'm not depressed, things aren't terrible...I just need to figure out how to move forward. I'll find the words to blog about it sometime soon....