This is a prayer I just wrote for my 3-day Solstice working for Na Morrigna. It’s a little rough, still, but it was written in a fit of inspiration a few moments ago. I may edit it later, but this is the version I used today, and will be using tomorrow and the following day.
WOW this month has been busy so far! And our Beltaine celebration started that off, pretty much.
We were hoping to have a Beltaine-eve bonfire with local pagan friends but the host unfortunately got sick, so we had another small hearth celebration, like we did for the Spring Equinox. The deity of the occasion for us this time is Áine, the Fairy Queen, and we also celebrate the fae (particularly the Seelie and nature-aligned ones) for this holiday.
Our meal consisted of a spring green salad with berries and goat cheese and honey with a berry vinaigrette dressing (YUM!), and gluten free angel food cake with home made strawberry topping for dessert. We also picked up a package of violet flavored chocolate covered marshmallows on a whim at the grocery store, so that’s the other thing on the plate! And we finally got Áine her own candle for the shrine shelf.
I used the prayer from the Spring Equionx again, altering it for the new holiday, and though I didn’t write it down at the time, I’ve recreated it as closely as possible below:
Beltaine has arrived, and the days are growing longer than the nights,
Plants are unfurling their leaves, and some have begun to bloom!
Spring has now reached its height, and the season is turning again
We stand at the balance: Spring becomes Summer
And on this day, we honor Áine
Queen of the Fae, Lady of Golden Light
Come to us now, and join in our celebration!
We offer you food, and drink, and merriment!
We ask in return for your blessings.
Help us to continue to grow and to bloom in this season.
Áine, Hail and Welcome!
A couple of days later, we took part in a ritual planned by a local pagan friend of ours that focused on the Green Man as a metaphor for the growth of the coming season. My role was that of a quarter call, in which I invoked local waterways, tying us back to the local environment. (The details for that are probably best left for a post on local cultus.) Here’s an image of the altar at the end of the rite (unfortunately by that time, the Green Man face we had constructed together was beginning to lose leaves!)
Here at the Blue House*, the Spring Equinox is an occasion to honor Arianhrod, and in keeping with my desire to come up with hearth traditions, we made a meal for the occasion, with a Welsh dish called Anglesey Eggs as the centerpiece.
I started the day before, with homemade slow-cooker mashed potatoes using Yukon Golds and lots of Irish butter and garlic salt. Yum! I also boiled a half dozen eggs, and dyed them in blueberry juice. They turned out quite lovely, though I forgot to crackle them ahead of time so the colors would seep through! Oops.
The day of our celebration, I sautéed some leeks in more of that lovely Irish butter with some more garlic… and then realized that it was going to be impossible to mix them into the cold mashed potatoes without heating it all the way up first… oops again. So instead, I just put them on top of the mash, and put the sliced boiled eggs on top of those.
I’d had grand plans for roasted lamb or a lamb meatloaf, but couldn’t find what I wanted in a price range that would fit our tight budget, so instead I browned about a pound of ground lamb in a skillet with some herbs (mint, rosemary, savory, and thyme) and then sprinkled that around the eggs before I added the cheese sauce and bread crumb topping. It was DELICIOUS.
I am definitely doing this again next year, though hopefully with lamb meatloaf! I had also planned on making welsh cakes with currants but I ran out of time and energy, alas. Next year, for sure!
Once the casserole was hot through and all the cheese was melted, we brought it to the table and served each of us a plate, with one on the side for Arianrhod, as our esteemed guest for the occasion. We also opened a bottle of bubbly and poured everyone (except the baby) a glass! When the food was served, I read aloud a prayer I had written for the occasion:
The Spring Equinox has arrived,
And the days are now as long as the nights.
The Plants are awakening from their slumber,
And green things are growing again!
No more is Spring only a promise of things to come,
But not yet is the world awash in flowers.
Here we are at the balance–
Mid-Spring, between Midwinter and Midsummer!
And on this day we honor Arianrhod,
Lady of the Silver Wheel, who dwells in Caer Sidi.
Come to us now, and join our celebration!
We offer you food, and drink, and merriment!
We ask in return for your blessings:
Help us to grow and to manifest the seeds we have planted.
ARIANRHOD, HAIL AND WELCOME!
And that was pretty much it! Good food, good drink, the family together. We shared the meal with our house spirits, we poured some drink for our other gods, and had ourselves a homey little celebration of the turning of the seasons.
How was yours?
*that’s what I’ve taken to calling our home, since both Scott and I have the color blue in common, spiritually.
Originally, Glasreo and I had hoped to be part of a small group doing a working in DC today, but that did not pan out for us. While we hope those colleagues of ours manage to pull off their grand endeavor with the help of the Theoi and other gods, we are home, and adding our power to the tide in our own small way.
A Prayer for the 4th of July
Today, I pray to the gods of War – that peace may be sought and maintained.
Today, I pray to the gods of Truth – that lies may have no power and be silenced.
Today, I pray to the gods of Justice – that the disenfranchised may be heard and provisioned.
Today, I pray to the Mighty Dead of this nation. I call out to them, and I pour them libation, that they may maintain their legacy, and that the founding principles of this country – the ideals of the Enlightenment – may prevail.
Our Mighty Dead dreamed of a country where all could be free to be who they truly were, without fear. While we now think many more aspects of individual identity should be protected, and we acknowledge that society does not give us all equal power, we continue to strive in the same ways that they did: increasing liberty and justice for all. May those ideals unite us, where others would divide us.
I honor also this land – from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean, to our northern border with Canada and past that to the Alaskan arctic, to our southern border with Mexico and the Gulf as well as the south Pacific islands. The land contains many different biomes, innumerable ecosystems, and a great diversity of life beyond humanity. Land, Sea, and Sky: these, too, are citizens, and they, too, must be protected and cherished.
So Hail to the Gods, Hail to the Mighty Dead, and Hail to the Natural World!
Tonight, my prayers will be lit in sparklers, not incense.
In the interest of keeping most of my more formal workings here on this blog, especially if they serve the folk, which is the end goal of Serendipities, I have decided to copy here a ritual outline I originally posted to my pagan tumblr.
About a month ago, I led a Kemetic revivalist styled (flavored?) public rite using the sanctuary of the ADF Grove where I a member. It was done as a “moon rite” because Kemetic rituals aren’t ADF-kosher for the 8 yearly High Rites, and honestly, that suited me just fine – it was a more intimate rite and I got to use my own outline, instead of the ADF Core Order of Ritual. I started with Per Sebek’s outline here, and then altered it to fit a group, and to more closely resemble the sort of ritual my attendees were used to (ie, ADF-style), and as we were holding this rite outside, after sunset, in October, I tried to make sure it would be short, too.
My general intention for the ritual was to help us let go of things that no longer served us, in preparation for Samhain (I led the rite the week before) and the introspection of winter months.
So here is the ritual outline, complete with prayers written by me: