Spring, the mere mention of the word tingles my senses, reminding me of hope, renewal and a chance to begin everything in life anew.
On a deeper level, I seem to remember past lives as a fair celtic maiden, playing hide and seek in the woods with friends, and delighting in the discovery of a meadow of flowers, plucking a handful of them to make herbal concoctions and a potion or two for safekeeping.
Times have changed and I currently live in an overly domesticated suburban world, with only small patches and parks to remind me of my natural roots. Yet, at the first hint of Spring, my shoes go off and I have to sink my toes deep into the green grass, slowly stirring both of us back to life.
One evening, while I was out doing just this very thing, along with a bit of stargazing, I was greeted by the sweetest little bunny in my yard. Ahhh, truly the spirit of Spring is here, right on time and as I stood in the quiet of my yard, I felt a stirring from deep within me, heralding the return of my creativity, fertility and sense of adventure.
Above me the stars of my ancestors surrounded me with their love, reminding me that I never walk alone and here next to me, in this beautiful bunny, stood the goddess Ostara inviting me to embrace the divine feminine and to take a walk on the wild side.
Never one to turn down an invitation, I opened mind, heart, body and soul and joined in on nature’s dance, reveling in the silver light of the moon…
The next morning in the light of day, I began decluttering my home, but found myself becoming easily distracted. There is spring cleaning to do in preparation for the coming equinox, but for this day, as I listened to my inner self, the girl in me just wants to play, to revel in the joy of Spring, and the promise it holds. Today, I will dream of fields of fragrant wildflowers, running barefoot with friends and lovers and dwell on promises to come of love, joy and warm sunny days…
As I enjoyed the warm breeze blowing through my open windows, I reflected on the ritual known as ‘spring break’, and how the word break means to end one thing and begin something new.
Breakfast for example, means to ‘break the fast’, from being asleep and not eating, to awakening and eating, thus breaking the fast. In the same way, we follow a similar ritual with spring break, as we stir from the deep slumber of winter and emerge from hibernation and the cave. We in this sense, like our ancestors, are breaking from the cold bonds of winter and entering a new cycle.
This is why rituals were created, to mark the passage of time and the movement from one season to another or to memorialize a special event or ceremony.
For many of us, attending a festival or parade provides a powerful kickstart to get the energy going again in the Spring, and perhaps that is why St. Patrick’s Day and the ‘wearing of the green’, is enjoyed by so many Americans in March. As a child who grew up in Louisiana, I have so many wonderful memories of festivals that my family and I attended. One of my deepest loves for the people of Louisiana, is their joy for life, the ability to celebrate something good about every day, and from the Pecan Festival to Jazz Fest, Mardi Gras and hundreds more, there is always an opportunity to gather with friends and family and celebrate life.
A powerful festival memory for me comes from my tween days, when our class took a field trip to a Renaissance Faire. I delighted in the costumes and fanfare, knights jousting, maidens in beautiful gowns, and a regal looking queen walking amongst her subjects.
I was with my girlfriends and we came across a booth where a woman sold love potions, that smelled sweet, heady and exotic. The potions were herbs packed in a tiny burlap sack which came with a silver locket that hung around the neck. You took a small amount of the herbs from the sack, held them in your hand, wished for love and then placed the herbs in the locket and hung around your neck.
Taking this information very seriously, all three of us girls purchased the herbs and lockets and set about bringing magic to our lives. Feeling bold with our love potions now in place, with silver lockets clasped around our necks, we set out to explore the rest of the faire. We noticed a crowd gathering by some bleachers and saw that a show was about to begin.
Crowding in together, we sat down and a moment later, some of our classmates joined us, including a handsome blond haired boy. Climbing up the bleachers, he sat down next to me.
As the show began, his hand inched closer to me until his fingers were touching mine and we stayed in that position for the fifteen minutes of the show. Raising our hands to clap for the knights and their jousting, we stood up and as the crowd dispersed, Wayne touched my arm and asked me to wait, that he had something to tell me.
With my heart beating a mile a minute, I turned to him and shyly looked into his eyes to see what he wanted to say. His hand was still on my arm and I can remember that moment like it was yesterday, the warmth of the sun peeking through the trees, birds singing, and the laughter and joy of the festival in the background.
He looked at me and said, ‘I wanted to tell you this’ – and then he leaned in and gave me a kiss. It was sweet, soft, promising and yielding. I was on fire and the herbal scent from the locket intermingled with his scent and nothing else existed in the world but the two of us and this kiss.
As our lips drew apart, I sat down slowly on the bleachers, as he remained beside me, holding my hand. As we gazed into each other’s eyes, he told me that he had a crush on me and it was only on this trip that he felt brave enough to tell me.
Oh Spring, Oh Ostara, Oh mighty silver locket, the joy you brought to me this day with the power of Spring, when as they say.. ‘a young boy’s fancy turns to love’.
Now all these years later, Spring still holds the promise of surprise, love and magic to me.
So this Spring, I invite you to explore, embrace the eternal promise of youth and create a little magic of your own.
I see good things coming for us all, as we enter into a new renaissance period, as I’ve been quoted ...
‘In this new energy, we are moving into a new ‘Age of Enlightenment’. The Aquarian information from the gods can no longer be contained, the divine feminine is being released in all her glory and we will once again see a renaissance period, where great art, architecture, philosophy, literature and science will develop and flourish. During this time the greatest minds will stir, to share, to illuminate and to build and create works and ideas that will be marveled around the world’.
To all the youth out there, enjoy your Spring and your first kiss, this spark is part of a sacred ritual that has been celebrated throughout time immemorial.