Celebrating Play: Spring Stone Spiral

We’re just getting over the last of the winter coughs and sneezes. Today was spent laying about reading books, sleeping and playing quietly. It was a blissful rest and the BEST way to begin our Spring holiday. By the afternoon we felt so much better and crossed the road to an enormous park for a run around.

We explored the creek and the bushland surrounding the park. We found a great place to paddle in when the heat becomes unbearable. We found an old tree with gnarly roots and caves of earth all around – the children promptly named it Gnome’s Hollow (“Mum! This is where all the stories come from!”) We admired all the native plants that are growing happily near the creek as part of the bushland regeneration.

And we came across a pile of rocks that looked like they wanted to be made into something special. Normally I’d associate a spiral with Winter – but it felt right today.

I was too overwhelmed to organise much in the way of a Spring Equinox celebration this year, but welcoming the new season by playing freely with my kids felt like the best kind of celebration.

  

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Persephone Transformed

Persephone

The season is turning: Winter into Spring – and at this time of year I always find myself with thoughts of Persephone the sweet young daughter of Demeter who was snatched from this world to become Queen of Hades. This poem (not the luc bat poem I promised – that one is still in progress)  I wrote 2 years ago when I was journeying with Persephone: a deep and dark journey that was! In this poem I wonder if, even though she was taken into Hades against her will, perhaps she was not so opposed to the idea of being Queen of the Underworld – for there she became a woman, even if she did so away from the support of her mother. I believe every young woman should be offered the rites of womanhood in the presence of her mother, and I grieve for both Persephone and Demeter that Hades denied them of this opportunity to share such a special moment in their lives together. In the end, though, Persephone found her own strength in the lands of the dead, and is able to return to the arms of her mother each spring to renew our joy, to recharge our energy. The return of Persephone marks a new phase, a new opportunity to breathe a little more life and colour and freedom into our existence.

I offer this poem in celebration of her return with the Spring.

Persephone Transformed

Blithe nymph with friends you laugh and prance

In present moment bliss you dance

From one sensory feast to another

Unaware that you stray far from Mother

Safe under the sun’s gaze

Safe in your childish grace

Unwary of the darkness near

The shadow of your mother dear

The pull from floral escapades in youth

The call from deep which shall reveal the truth.

On a journey you now embark

Alone to grow wings in the dark

A mother left to mourn her daughter’s dream

To search in vain for the source of her scream

By force Death took you down

By force, gave you a crown

But did you go unwillingly?

To meet with your new destiny?

Perhaps some inner hunger you expressed

When Innocence became the Queen of Death

A seed you slipped between your teeth

And so for now you stay beneath

To reign among the disembodied souls

To grant them their peace, their fears you console

Young queen, you’ve changed your name

Return, but not the same

A girl’s heart in a woman’s hide

Between two worlds is Hade’s bride

Return your crown of darkness to the King

Persephone emerge into the Spring

Written by and Copyright to Jennifer McCormack, 2008