Archive | April 2011

For the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

Have you ever stood in the April wood and called the new year in?
While the phantoms of three thousand years fly as the dead leaves spin?
There’s a snap in the grass behind your feet and a tap upon your shoulder.
And the thin wind crawls along your neck it’s just the old gods getting older.
And the kestral drops like a fall of shot and the red cloud hanging high
come a Beltane.
Have you ever loved a lover of the old elastic truth?
And doted on the daughter in the ministry of youth?
Thrust your head between the breasts of the fertile innocent.
And taken up the cause of love, for the sake of argument.
Or while the kisses drop like a fall of shot from soft lips in the rain
come a Beltane.
Happy old new year to you and yours.
The sun’s up for one more day, to be sure.
Play it out gladly, for your card’s marked again.

Have you walked around your parks and towns so knife-edged orderly?
While the fires are burned on the hills upturned in far-off wild country.
And felt the chill on your window-sill as the green man comes around.
With his walking cane of sweet hazel brings it crashing down.
Sends your knuckles white as the thin stick bites. Well, it’s just your groaning pains.
Come a Beltane. Come a Beltane.
Come a Beltane. Come a Beltane.
Come a Beltane. Come a Beltane.
Come a Beltane. Come a Beltane.

Jethro Tull


Out of my window, looking in the night
I can see the barges flickering light
Silently flows the river to the sea
And the barges too go silently,

Barges, I would like to go with you
I would like to sail the ocean blue
Barges, have you treasures in your hold?
Do you fight with pirates, brave and bold?

Out of my window, looking in the night
I can see the barges, flickering light
Starboard shine green and port is glowing red
I can see the barges dead ahead.

How my heart longs to sail away with you
As you sail across the ocean blue
But I must stay behind my window clear
As those barges sail away from here.

the wedding

I have mixed emotions about watching the Royal wedding, mostly because of family history. My grandmother was very careful to instill in us that we were Scots and not under any English queen but also that our family had worked in Balmoral Castle and in particular one cousin, a certain ghillie for Queen Victoria, one John Brown. I also know that Margaret MacGregor, my great-great grandmother emigrated to Canada from Balmoral. Since that isn’t exactly a hot bed of industry there were probably other family members in service to the royal family as well. I know Grandma didn’t think much of her cousin, he was “No better than he should be.” Which I suppose maybe he was naughty with the queen as a lot of people think. I know she was buried with his picture and ring.

For all I know it’s where my great grandfather’s family learned to be bakers. And how a MacGregor got all the way to Aberdeenshire when they were prone to getting in trouble in the South I don’t know either but my Cumming grandmother had no love of the English. On the other hand my mother, her daughter loved anything with Queen Elizabeth II. Her excuse was that the Queen was ½ Scottish again. Anyway anything on TV from the trooping of the colours which they used to show here to Diana’s wedding and Funeral we had to watch no matter what time of day it was on. I didn’t care it got me out of school or whatever else we were doing. “It was educational” was always the excuse. Just like going to wherever the Queen’s Massed Bands of any sort were touring Southern California and playing. My favourite one of those was when one of them played the Hollywood Bowl when I was small and they had a lone piper up the hill in the chaparral play at dusk. It still gives me chills. Mom would always dress us up in our kilts and paraphernalia to go. I was always glad because it meant I wasn’t wearing a dress. A kilt is not a dress or a skirt and it feels very different to wear for some reason. Maybe the way it sways but it makes you stand up straight. I was always watching the male dancers because I had taken Highland dance and there had only ever been one boy in any class. And there were a whole load of them dancing when the bands came. And the men were sooo much better than I ever was.

 By the time Alison came along we were allowed to go in jeans and a dress shirt and sweater, thank heavens, although because I was wearing a tie with my blue button down shirt and FairIsle sweater some stupid lady thought I was a guy in the restroom line at Paulie Pavilion and told me to go to the men’s room. At which point a very proper, elderly Scottish lady told her to be quiet. I was dressed just fine for a good Scottish girl. This embarrassed the stupid woman a lot and amused me no end. And I got a wink from the Scottish lady and a big grin.

 So Alison and I will be watching at one in the morning our time to see the whole thing go down and probably backing it up on the DVR. 30 years ago the whole family watched together. 14 years ago I went to my parent’s house to watch with them in our Tudor house full of family antiques and mom and dad, (they were antiques too). Now it’s just Alison and me and the house is gone and the antiques are in storage. But I’m still going to make a nice cup of Prince of Wales tea and maybe even some scones and we’ll watch all the pomp and circumstance and hope this marriage is going to have a better outcome than William’s mother’s did. She certainly knows her prince better and what she is getting into more than Diana ever did.

Rede – long form

Bide ye Wiccan laws ye must,

in perfect love and perfect trust.

Live and let live, fairly take and fairly give.

Form the circle thrice about, to keep all evil spirits out.

Deosil go by the waxing moon, singing out ye Witches’ Rune.

Widdershins go by the waning moon, chanting out ye Baneful Rune.

When the Lady’s moon is new, kiss your hand to her times two.

When the moon rides at her peak, then ye heart’s desire seek.

Heed the North wind’s mighty gale, lock the door and trim the sail.

When the wind comes from the South, love will kiss thee on the mouth.

When the wind blows from the West, departed souls may have no rest.

When the wind blows from the East, expect the new and set the feast.

Nine woods in ye cauldron go, burn them fast and burn them slow.

Elder be ye Lady’s tree, burn it not or cursed ye’ll be.

When the wheel begins to turn, soon ye Beltaine fire’ll burn.

When the wheel hath turned to Yule, light the log the Horned One rules.

Heed ye flower, bush and tree, by the Lady blessed be.

Where the rippling waters flow, cast a stone and truth ye’ll know.

When ye have and hold a need, harken not to other’s greed.

With a fool no season spend, nor be counted as his friend.

Merry meet and merry part, bright the cheeks and warm the heart.

Mind ye threefold law ye should, three times bad and three times good.

When misfortune is anow, wear the blue star upon thy brow.

True in love ye must ever be, lest thy love be false to thee.

In these eight words the Wiccan Rede fulfill,

‘An ye harm none, do what ye will.

Lady Gwynne Thompson

Spider’s web

It’s a web like a spider’s web
Made of silk and light and shadow
Spun by the moon in my room at night
It’s a web made to catch a dream
Hold it tight till I awaken
As if to say that dreaming’s all right.

In a valley, by a mission
There’s an old oak tree
By the mission, there’s a fountain
Where my love told me.

On the evening, I was leaving
My love dreamt of me
I was sleeping, she was weeping
And she said to me.

I met a stranger, his name Danger
We rode side by side
Down in Santa Fe, I killed a man, they say.
Danger told me ride.

If I return, they will have me
By the old oak tree
In the valley, by the mission,
Where my love told me.

On my honor


On my honor I will try,
There’s a duty to be done and I say "aye",
There’s a reason here for the reason up above,
My honor is to try and my duty is to love

1) People don’t need to know my name
If I do them any harm then I’m to blame.
If I help a Friend then I’ve helped me
To open up my eyes that I might see.

2) I’ve tucked away a song or two,
If you’re feeling low there’s one for you
If you need a friend, then I will come
And there’s plenty more where I come from.

3) Come with me where the fire burns bright,
You can see even better by firelight,
You can learn even more by the campfire’s glow,
Than you can ever learn in a year or so.

4) We’ve made a promise we’ll always keep,
We’ll pray "softly falls" before we sleep,
We’ll be Girl Scouts together, and when we’re gone,
We’ll still be trying and singing this song.

By Cindy Dasch

Who can sail?

Who can sail when there is no wind?
Who without oars can go rowing?
Who can sail far away from a friend
Without tears a flowing?

Try to sail when there is no wind.
Try without oars to go rowing.
Try to sail far away from a friend
Without tears a flowing.

I can sail when there is no wind
I without oars can go rowing
But I can’t sail far away from a friend
Without tears a flowing