autumn crone 2
Lay the altar in shades of gold.
copper, russet and indigo blue
cast the circle
and light dark candle
incense spicy and sweet.

Come Dark Mother,
we seek your comfort
in time of dying soil,
of grasses withered brown,
fruit plucked,
and all grain gathered.

Decay, destruction, death
yours as you reap
with sickle of silver moon,
for you are the pause
between night and day
that clears the field
for new growth.

As you gather the witching hour
around you in tattered rags,
regal and rank,
your breath
the sickly sweet of humus,
rich decaying earth,
you sweep the dross
of season past
with your scavenger broom.

Your hands, wizened claws,
hold us in soul's 
long dark night,
a grip so fierce
you force us to stare
into the bloody eye of our terror.
You whisper to us
to free all fear
on emancipating sigh
like wind
through a 
clean bone.

Come Dark Goddess
teach us the healing art
of bitter medicine,
a homeopathic sip
of whatever poisons us
to vomit up
the toxins
of the past,
regret, shame, fear, guilt,
freeing us from
the weight of
undigested pain,
for now.

Beloved Crone,
wrap us in your frayed garments
of shadow and spiderweb
that stink of the grave,
and hold us to your 
cold withered breast,
where we must die ourselves
to be reborn in the light.

For you know how to cradle
us in that dormant moment
when we let go of the past
and surrender to 
that pregnant pause
where possibilities
swarm and coalesce 
in ephemeral patterns,
 tremble together,
then dissolve back
into the waiting womb,
of Hecate's 
cabalistic cauldron.

Lay the altar in 
gold and scatter leaves of auburn,
rust, amber and crimson,
purify with pungent 
myrrh and clove,
give thanks for the heat
of season past,
and now mourn the 
sun's long descent
into the underworld
where Demeter seeks
stolen Persephone
doomed to a darkness
that heralds the
seasonal sleep
of the earth.

Come Grandmother,
balance us on your bony knee,
croon your ancient lullaby,
your song of solitude,
directing our gaze inwards
in contemplation,
to taste the sweet harvest
of sun splashed memories,
breaking bread with loved ones
at table filled with garden bounty,
the first calf of spring,
a riot of wildflowers,
fresh lake water soothing sun fevered skin.
Our bright bouquet of
evergreen images
cherished within hothouse heart,
to be visited over and over
in the chill of darkest night.

Bitter fruits we must savour also,
perhaps the discovery that love
isn't always loving after all, 
that grief doesn't always get easier with time,
that we will always hurt each other,
that we may forever be alone.
And when we have sucked all marrow
from old bones
Hecate will
let us go
to wait
and wait
in cocooned state,
sensed turned down,
life hushed
colours muted,
watching for

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