October: Chaos

I get the call at 5pm. Merlin needs to be put to sleep, tonight. I look at my watch and know I will not get there in time.

–          –          –          –          –

The car mounts the pavement a few feet to my right. I run, unaided, tripping on the pavement edge. My head slamming, all in an instant, against unyielding grey tarmac. The urban earth rising to meet me.

–          –          –          –          –

Hannah takes my hand and we lock fingers. For a moment we acknowledge that this will be the last time we see each other. Then she asks if my psoriasis is better, and the moment has gone.

–          –          –          –          –

Day 10, and my temperature is going up and down like a yo-yo. I’m aware of every part of my body, joints screeching at me not to move. Which is fine – the dizziness takes care of that. In sleep I see the Caiileach pounding rocks with a hammer, and a dark-haired Winter Queen stands high above me.

–          –          –          –          –

I do not think that my Lady killed my cat or broke my nose. My partner’s aunt died of cancer, which had even less to do with me. I got the ‘flu because my immune system sucks because I have a genetic condition. These things are the way of the world, and not the responsibility of any person or being.

But there was a reason why Beara asked me to dedicate myself to her at the edge of summer, on the edge of the world. Welcoming in a goddess of chaos and creation, dedicating myself as her priestess-in-training, I made a serious commitment, and she took it seriously. Letting Cailleach Bhearra into my life, completely, meant a flooding in of her waters against my seashore, carving a path into my edges. And as Samhain creeps in, the days contracting suddenly, the gates to the Otherworld are all at once flung open, and the Trooping Folk flood in. Chaos reigns.

I’m not great with earth energy. Two deaths, one illness, and one literal encounter with the ground later, I’m starting to experience Beara’s earth energy very directly. It burns when you look into that volcano. It breaks your nose when you hit that road surface.

I don’t deny that the gods could break my bones if they wanted to. But I don’t think my Lady would. Not because she’s all touchy-feely, either. She’s not concerned with breaking my little bones – she’s got winds to stir up and mountains to carve out of the landscape. If I want to serve her, I get to live at the foot of her mountain and let the waves engulf me. It’s the only way.

These are the Long Days of Misrule before the sun stands still. Let the Folk dance where they will. She’s keeping an eye on them. I can’t say that she won’t let me fall – but I do know that she won’t push me.

–     –     –     –     –

I call on my lady as I sit in traffic. ‘Clear me a path, lady of the wild winds and shifting earth.’ The rain beats down, unrelenting. But there’s a rainbow just to my right as I reach the vet’s, minutes before they’re due to close. I get to tell Merlin that he was the best friend I could have asked for, to help me through two years in the wilderness. And that it’s OK, and he can go to sleep now.

The cliffs of Inis Baoi.

The cliffs of Inis Baoi.

The coolest cat.

The coolest cat.

4 thoughts on “October: Chaos

  1. Your journey a roller coaster of events and your learnings from Cailleach Bhearra now like the steep ascent before the tumble down the other side, with more twists and turns as the ‘ride’ continues. The wheels hold the cart on its course and you are still safe, if a bit battered, bruised and breathless.

    I admire you singlehearted dedication to Cailleach Bhearra. I am awed by your taking the huge step of dedication. I appreciate your sharings here of the wildness, wisdom and wonder of your emerging relationship with Her.

    It is good you were able to farewell your friend Merlin. He is gone from your presence in his physical form, but his lessons will continue to be taught and your understandings deepen. It is always hard to lose such a friend and companion. It hurts the heart as it expands the soul,

  2. Sorry to hear you’re having a tough time at the moment and about you losing Merlin. I hope he has safe passage to the Summerlands.

    Yes, the energies of chaos are high at the moment and the winter gods and goddesses of the dead season are intrisically bound up with them, in a way are them, and won’t withdraw them even for their dedicants, although they can teach us to know and endure them…

    • I think you’ve misunderstood my post. I was talking about how I expected this, as a result of dedicating to Beara. You don’t dedicate yourself to a goddess of chaos and expect to *avoid* the chaos…

      • I think you’ve misunderstood my answer. I never suggested you expected to avoid the chaos. Although perhaps my words about the gods of chaos not withdrawing those energies for their dedicants may haphazardly appear to suggest this. Apologies for any misunderstanding.

Comments are closed.