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#2 Still the Beginning: The Cup July 31, 2019

Posted by wimynspeak in Sourceress: The Book of Fear.
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And so we find ourselves yet at the beginning still, though, to be clear, it is not the same beginning. Life has moved on, as it does, in a flow of cycles and seasons, and this beginning finds the child sitting quietly occupied in play while her mother carries on with her chores. Her father is not present at this moment, out working at the business of financial livelihood and, as best he knows how, the care and security of his family. (We will see later that this seemingly beneficent belief in his role as family guardian has some unintended consequences, which may cause more than one of us to question the usefulness of such “truth” in our own lives, which, to digress even further, is the purpose of story – to engender introspection and questioning.)

The girl, as promised by the giver of the wand, has indeed grown both strong and kind, and always seems to know her mind and the desires of her heart, though she is not prone to insisting on having her way. If this seems inconsistent with the usual manner of such a young one, so fresh in this world, so be it. We will continue in this vein nonetheless. And so …

Once upon another particular point in that same recent long-ago time …

Just after the girl’s second sun cycle threshold was reached, a beautiful woman, with hair the color of silvery moonbeams, a dress iridescent with the light of a thousand stars, and gossamer wings that were at once as blue as the clearest afternoon sky and as seemingly inconsequential as morning mist, appeared at the family’s abode. She found the door open, as it nearly always was, and the little girl sitting on the floor, the Wand of Desire at her side, while her mother hummed sweetly over some mending. When the winged woman stepped inside, the child and her mother looked up at the same time and smiled identical smiles.

“Hello, little one.” The woman’s voice shimmered and sparkled in the air around them, like sunbeams playing in their own light, and the child laughed with delight. “I have been looking for you,” the woman said to her, and the child nodded in apparent agreement.

The young mother rose from her seat to brew some tea and offered their guest some sweet cakes she had baked earlier. The woman accepted graciously and sat down to wait while the child crawled onto her mother’s lap to suckle. The women sat in companionable silence, nibbling on cakes and sipping tea, until finally the child was satisfied and slid from her mother’s arms.

Then, without hesitation, the little girl approached the shining woman, who lifted her onto her own star-shimmer lap and stroked her baby-silk hair with the same motion the child’s mother used to soothe her when sometimes at night she had frightening dreams, always the same: a great fire and an immense expanse of space where the darkness was impenetrable. (We will see later, of course, how these dreams relate to and even presage the future. For now, we remain in the moment of all-is-well.) The woman spoke to the child’s mother over the silken head lying easily against her breast. “She is growing tall and strong. You have nourished her well.”

The mother nodded, pleased, recognizing the truth as it was spoken. “Yes. Thank you.”

“Soon it will be time for the little one to be weaned. She will know,” the winged woman said, inclining her head toward the Wand of Desire lying on the floor where the child had been playing, “when she is ready.” The woman paused and stared as if considering some long-distant place. Her eyes dimmed to the palest of blue, as clear as water, and she herself turned momentarily translucent, as if she might disappear, before gathering herself and returning firmly to the present. “I have a gift from my sisters in the Land of the Fae,” she said finally, and brought forth from the light of her wings an exquisite little cup. The cup was the color of the moon at its fullness and was encrusted with colorful gems that gleamed as if lit from within.

“Oh!” the young mother exclaimed. “It’s so beautiful!”

“Yes,” the woman of the Fae said, “and there is no other like it. It was created by an ancient alchemist in gratitude for a favor done for her by my many-many-times-great-grandmother. The alchemist used materials she found in my land and imbued them with her own very special magick.”

The winged woman handed the cup to the little girl, who took it and squealed with delight.

“What is it for?” asked the child’s mother, certainty and uncertainty fighting for precedence within her. Another special gift? she thought, glancing at the wand lying on the floor near where her daughter sat in the faerie woman`s lap. The little girl was gazing at the cup, seemingly entranced by its shimmering light. What kind of child receives such favor, and, more troubling, what might be expected from such a child? What be the cost?

The woman of the Fae read the young mother’s struggle in the way she watched her child and so spoke to her gently and with understanding. “It is the Cup of Creativity,” she said. “When she is weaned she must drink from it often. This cup is hers and hers alone. As the current guardian of the cup, it is my choice to pass it on, or to hold it for another. The word, the praenomen, by which your daughter is known to the stars, was whispered to me in a dream, and so I set out on my long journey to find her.” The woman smiled, wishing to further reassure. “If she will accept the cup, I will be her faerie mother,’ she said. “Not in the ways you are her womb-mother, but in ways you cannot be. I will be here to watch over her and to guard the cup.”

Rather than being reassured, however, a dark cloud of concern crossed the young mother’s face, and the faerie knew that the woman understood far beyond what she might have expected. The Fae woman would not lie to her in the presumption of protection.

“Yes,” the faerie said, “unfortunately there may be those who would wish to destroy the cup or to harm the one who bears it … No, no, you mustn’t worry.” She spoke lightly, reassuringly when she saw the distress deepening and taking over the young mother’s face, so that it was collapsing into a mask of fear. “We do not know that this is so. It may be that these are but the stories told by the ancient ones to frighten us into awareness. Rest assured I will allow no harm to come to this child. She will be protected. I promise you. Do you believe me?”

The young mother looked deeply into the faerie woman’s eyes, which were now the sapphiric color of a crystal blue sky on a warm May morning, and saw there only truth. She nodded and, finally, smiled, her fear dissipating into the void. “Yes,” she said. “I believe you.” She knew in a way she couldn’t explain that the faerie woman was incapable of speaking anything but the truth.

While the women were talking, the child had climbed down from her faerie mother’s lap and taken the cup with her. She picked up the Wand of Desire and chewed on it for a few moments, as was her habit. She was only a babe, really, barely two sun cycles out of the womb after all, but she understood, in a way that needed no words, that tonight she would nourish herself at her mother’s breast one last time, and that tomorrow she would begin drinking from the beautiful cup the nice lady with wings had given her.

When the little girl’s father came home, she ran to him as she usually did, and threw her tiny arms about his neck. “Look!” she whispered in his ear, pointing at the cup sitting on the table.

“How beautiful, my love,” her father said, setting her down and giving his wife a quizzical look.

She tried to explain everything to him in detail, wanting him to understand how important this was; what it meant for their little girl. First the Wand of Desire and now the Cup of Creativity! “The faerie woman said this cup is so special there are those who would destroy it,” she told him, wanting only to convey the cup’s special value, not to frighten him.

“What?” Her husband looked suddenly worried, stern. “Then we cannot keep it. I will not allow it!”

The man’s wife was taken aback at her husband’s vehemence, forgetting her own initial fears; then she remembered the faerie woman’s promise. “My dear,” she said, taking his worried face into her two hands and drawing his gaze so that he peered deeply into her eyes. “It is not for us to allow or not allow,” she said gently, but with conviction. “It is as it is. The woman of the Fae has declared herself our daughter’s faerie mother and has promised that no harm will come to her. Our little one is protected by our love and by faerie magick.” She smiled. “It will be all right.”

The man looked deeply into his wife’s eyes, and there he saw the moon and the stars, and a bright, polished gem the color of a crystal blue sky on a warm May morning that could only be the truth. He nodded, softening. “Yes, well … “ and he turned his brightest smile on his precious child, who stood by, watching her parents, the wand in one hand, the cup in the other.

And it is here we come to the end of another scene, another pause in the pacing of the telling, though of course, life for our happy-so-far family continues on, as it does, even if the story seems to rest. By the time we are ready to rejoin the flow, bypassing the ongoing seasons of mundanity that would become simply boring in the telling, the feelings of anxiety produced by the gifting of the cup would seem to have dissipated. But like many seeds that fall on fertile ground, when the right elements come together to nourish it, the seed may indeed germinate and grow. But that is still some time in the future. For now, we must focus on completing the beginning. To the unstoried, it would appear that not much has yet happened, but this would not be so. Much of life and story occurs below the surface of our awareness, and if we are wise, we will recognize this blindness of reality and take it into consideration when we note that, in this moment, though there be ripples in our little family’s glassy pool of calm and truth-as-we-know-it, all is yet well.

 

Copyright 2019 Linda Maree/Linda M Gabriel

Stone Bear July 26, 2018

Posted by wimynspeak in General, Story Tellings.
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Did I ever tell you the story about the time I met the stone bear? It happened countless lifetimes ago, but I remember it like it was yesterday.

I was on the hill where the old stone circle ruins now stand. Back then, the circle had not been constructed yet, and wouldn’t be for many generations, and the hill was higher, less rounded by time. The surface was covered with dark, jagged rocks and stiff, course grass; it was not the gentle, comfortable place it is now. On one side of the hill there was a very small cave, which was well hidden and said to be unendingly deep. In fact, the ooooold stories said that one could see the other side of the universe from the mouth of that cave. Of course, no one in my lifetime, then … or now, really, had ever seen such a vision, but I decided that I must do just that.

So, one morning in mid-summer, I woke before all the others and crept away from our encampment. We were nomadic, then, remember, but we would be in this place for some time yet, at least another turning of the moon, for food was plentiful and we could fill our bellies and put on necessary fat stores for winter. Though morning had just dawned, the stars still shone overhead as I made my way… they were much closer and brighter back then … and the spiky grass was damp with dew beneath my feet. I knew how to creep as silently as an owl moves in flight, and I am sure I disrupted no living creature’s rest, nor drew the attention of any of the nocturnal predators returning to their lairs with whom we shared the brightening landscape. I had just reached the path that led up the hill, where the cave and its mysteries lay silent and hidden, when I saw the stone bear.

He snuffled in front of me on the path, moving and breathing like any other living creature, but it was obvious his great hulk of a body was created entirely of stone. Even for the time it was back then, so close to the dawn of humanity, as we call it now, I knew that it was not usual for stone objects to move and breathe thus. This was obviously no carven object, such as the mage’s made, but a living creature made of stone.

I followed the creature, fascinated, and it seemed that, a time or two, it turned its great stone head to see if I was still following, as if it expected me to do just that. I seemed now to be captured by its hard, earthen energy, and felt that even if I were compelled to do so … and I was not … I could not have left the beast’s influence.

Of course the stone bear led me directly to the cave, which, from my vantage point a few steps back along the path, appeared gaping and dark, an abyss into which one might be swallowed whole and alive, to live out one’s allotted time in abysmal nothingness. But the stories promised something greater, a wide expanse of universe that would make the magic and majesty of the star-filled sky over my head seem ordinary, mundane. So I stepped closer to the bear, wanting the promise it seemed to offer.

“You must leave them behind,” I thought I heard the bear whisper when I found I could get no closer. There seemed an invisible field of force about the creature that repelled me, not in the sickening way, but in the true physical sense of the word. I simply could not come closer, no matter that I tried.

“You must leave your most precious thoughts, your fears and inhibitions, your expectations and disappointments, all of them. Leave them here. The others will not find them. Strangers will pass by without noticing them. The treasures of the mind are such that they cannot be recognized once abandoned by the thinker. Even you, upon your return, will not be able to pick them up again, not as they are now.” All of this the bear said without words, but I heard the message nonetheless and vow that this is a true telling.

Be this a curse or a gift? I wondered, and got no answer, and so I came to see that it was neither, but rather a choice that hung on the balance point of my desire. For good or ill, if I wished to see the wonders of the cave, all must be left behind, and the leaving must be understood to be undoable.

The great bear turned away and moved toward the dark entrance of the cave as if certain of my decision.

 

 

© 2018 Linda Maree

Please include attribution when sharing. Thank you!

The Hive of HERstory: Weaving Our Words June 25, 2015

Posted by wimynspeak in General, Workshops.
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LogoThe Hive of HERstory: Weaving Our Words

Intuitive collage workshop for women

The smiling crescent moon called to the women, “Come! Come! Dance with me and weave your stories that I may laugh with you.” And so they did. They danced and sang and their voices created threads of light that flowed about them as their hands fashioned them into intricate knots and spectacular weavings. The tapestry that came together was made of moonbeams and joy and the magick of the women’s words, powerful and true . . .

Come join us as we use the intuitive collage process, along with simple writing prompts, to weave together our own magickal tapestry of joy and power and truth.

Rosemary Court Yoga Studio, 810 Central Avenue, Sarasota

Saturday, July 18, from 2:00-5:00PM

Open Pricing *   Please pay generously and joyfully according to your means.

Advance registration is required.  Let me know if you can attend.

The Hive of HERstory: Tell a NEW Story May 31, 2015

Posted by wimynspeak in General, Workshops.
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LogoThe Hive of HERstory: Tell a NEW Story

Intuitive collage workshop for women

Under the faint light of a waning crescent moon, over eons of time, words were passed from the mouth of one woman to the ear of the next, each word carrying with it a vision, shared again and again, until all knew the stories by heart. And the stories were good. But then the youngest among them turned to the wise woman next to her and said, loud enough for all to hear, “The old stories are wonderful and magickal, but the world is changing and so am I.” And the women knew that she spoke the truth, knew that for the magick to continue, they must learn to Tell a NEW Story . . .

Come join us as we use the intuitive collage process, along with simple writing prompts, to find and tell our NEW story, the one that changes everything.

Rosemary Court Yoga Studio, 810 Central Avenue, Sarasota

Saturday, June 13, from 2:00-5:00PM

Open Pricing *   Please pay generously according to your means.

Advance registration is required.  Let me know if you are joining us.

This Is What Might Happen . . . January 2, 2014

Posted by wimynspeak in Bee Write!, General.
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This is what might happen when you stir together

* a rainy day

* a front porch

* a tree

* and an aging movie star trying to keep a low profile

and write them into a story . . .

Belva had always believed in magic. The way she got her first part in a movie when she was only six years old was magical. The way she had worked in film throughout her teens was magical. The fact that she had had a normal childhood, despite her fame, and had never succumbed to the glitz, glamour, and glare of her industry, had not become drug or sex addicted or belligerent and out of control was particularly magical.

Belva had always chosen her parts carefully. Karma couldn’t tell the difference between real life and imagination, including movies and playacting, she believed, and so she chose to play only those characters that were consistent with her values. And then she would dive into the role, relishing the opportunity to be someone magnificent, someone she yearned to be herself, someone doing great things in the world. She had had many inspiring roles over the years and had even won a few awards, which she had accepted modestly before packing them away in her mother’s old trunk.

Her retirement had been a conscious decision, as all her decisions were. Her career was still going strong, she was still being offered choice roles, but one day, sitting on her porch, watching the chattering squirrels in the chestnut tree in the front yard as they collected their winter store and dodged raindrops, she realized there was no place else she’d rather be, no part she’d rather play than the contented watcher of squirrels on a rainy day. This was magic!

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