Archive | April 4, 2013

Poetry month – Oak, Ash, & Thorn

A Rudyard Kipling morning

A Tree Song

            (A. D. 1200)





Of all the trees that grow so fair,

  Old England to adorn,

Greater are none beneath the Sun,



Sing Oak, and Ash, and Thorn, good sirs,

  (All of a Midsummer morn!)

Surely we sing no little thing,



Oak of the Clay lived many a day,
  Or ever Aeneas began.
Ash of the Loam was a lady at home,
  When Brut was an outlaw man.
Thorn of the Down saw New Troy Town
(From which was London born);
Witness hereby the ancientry
  Of Oak, and Ash, and Thorn!

Yew that is old in churchyard-mould,
  He breedeth a mighty bow.
Alder for shoes do wise men choose,
  And beech for cups also.
But when ye have killed, and your bowl is spilled,
  And your shoes are clean outworn,
Back ye must speed for all that ye need,
  To Oak, and Ash, and Thorn!

Ellum she hateth mankind, and waiteth
  Till every gust be laid,
To drop a limb on the head of him
  That anyway trusts her shade:
But whether a lad be sober or sad,
  Or mellow with ale from the horn,
He will take no wrong when he lieth along
  ‘Neath Oak, and Ash, and Thorn!

Oh, do not tell the Priest our plight,
  Or he would call it a sin;
But–we have been out in the woods all night,
  A-conjuring Summer in!
And we bring you news by word of mouth-
  Good news for cattle and corn–
Now is the Sun come up from the South,
  With Oak, and Ash, and Thorn!

Sing Oak, and Ash, and Thorn, good sirs
  (All of a Midsummer morn):
England shall bide ti11 Judgment Tide,
  By  Oak, and Ash, and Thorn!

Today’s reading

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Salmon Knight of Cups Salmon are sacred in most shamanic systems for many reasons, but their ability to swim upstream to their birthplace and spawn is one of the most remarkable. This journey leaves the salmon exhausted and most die in the attempt. Representing, therefore, self-sacrifice and wisdom, salmon were said to swim in pools overhung by hazel trees and to eat the nuts falling off in autumn. This card denotes someone whose life serves a greater purpose, someone with perseverance, determination, self-sacrificing and wise. Could have a tendency to martyrdom -to give away too much of one self.