Posted on October 25th, 2013 | by Leslie



I am hooded
The heavy-lidded shapeshifter
Feather-cloaked in black and silken rustling
Consuming and confusing all, the consummate magician
Befuddlement incarnate
Consciously concealed beneath a tangle, entwined
Encircled by a winged embrace, tips touching
Wrapped and enrapturing
Suspended above the cold-pressed earth under threadbare feet, their talons tucked
Crackling with intention
Swimming in the saturation that clings to fingers outstretched
The magic of stealth and will manipulated, outpouring
Suffusing the air
Bending the shape of the universe
Charged, charging, changing

I am smoke in the ether, materialized
Solid and shifting, dark and roiling
Contemplating constriction and release
Prowling the circle of space separating smoke from spark and sight from sound
The thought from the thinker
My eyes opaque, obsidian pools of deflected depth
Like liquid glass, perceiving and shielded
Of flow and form, chaos and catastrophe contained
Held at bay
Cracked stone fields, a grey expanse barren to the horizon
Labyrinth of fissures
The mouths of caverns hidden, open, unobserved
Waiting to speak, to be heard
Full of silence and potential and wraiths awaiting sunset
Shades of humanity forgotten, forlorn, fleeting

I am the washer woman at the ford
The lady in white, my face obscured, my body bent to this task
Crimson in the water clouding clarity
Cleansing, cathartic, I cull the herd
Simmering, shimmering, shivering over the water
Reflected in the surface of the stream, mountain-fed, flowing out toward the sea
Iron-clad, infused now, carrying a broken blessing
Blood on the tongue or in the veins, surging
Or freezing
Blood on the beaks of the ravens calling the wolves
Heralding the dead with natural ceremony
Eviscerating their corpses
Exposing their bones to the leaden sky
Secrets held no longer
Their warmth abandoned, a steaming froth on the forest floor
Picked clean, these cages no more
Naked and anonymous and gnawed

I am bloodied and bloodying the hands of those who serve me
The queen of conflict claiming men
Seducing and inciting hearts that beat to a climax
Insidious my call, summoning warriors to the field
To be bled and led as one who bleeds alone
For I am irresistible
Illuminating, intoxicating, and battle-scarred
Screaming out into the din raging on
Commanding the clash and cleave of combat
Cacophonous, the music in my ears, sweet and inescapable
In their souls I sit and seethe and seep into their willing flesh
Their red on my lips for a kiss goodnight
A folly of deadly consequence
My tongue is forked to spear you when I’m done

Become the flame that leaps in the mind, the eyes, the loins
A sullen heat that burns against the will, against the wall, charring edges
Melting wax and resolve, burning blue with intensity
Devoid of consequence
Destroying evidence
Delighting in destruction, devouring
Delivering disillusionment
Refining fire that redefines and realigns
Blistering brilliant and blinding, hot enough to hurt
Shaping the shadows glimpsed in the mirror
A path, a portent, a portal
Future flavours tasted gingerly to be found where the veil is thinnest
Moments of time not yet lived, not yet lost
Revealed in scrying bowls and candle flickers
Ashen and alabaster in the light falling from the moon as gossamer tendrils
Reaching out and bleaching bright
Blanching pale, a living lunacy

Blackthorn and whitethorn and yew on the fire
A beacon in the darkness, calling
The lantern at the gate the dead walk through
Ancestors remembered
Honoured, hallowed, haunting the door
Welcomed and seated by the hearth swept clear
Libated, sated they mingle
Communing with community consequential
Substantive and insubstantial
Well met by moonlight, by firelight, by design
At the culmination of the year
Reflection, rumination, and timely recompense
Drawn from the bag, from the deck, from the mysteries
Divining a course, forecasting the weather
Settling accounts at the close of the day
Smoke in the rafters and ashes in the grate
Time dissipating whiskey and wine
Apples bobbing in the bucket
Frost creeping across the panes, curling the leaves outside
Breath of what’s to come

So, sleep, in the comfortable darkness
Slumber of relief, release; relinquish your grip
Sink down into fallow, into stillness
Hear the wind that winds whisper-soft, until it rises
Dragging finger twigs over the shingles
A twisting pitch wailing, crying, shrieking high and hollow
Setting teeth on edge and stiffening spines
Until it breaks, subsiding
Blows itself out to whisper once more to the embers gently glowing
As a memory, as a witness, to the world that changed this night

When spirits walk and visions speak
When men become the fear they seek
And shadows spread across the land
Put faith in me and take my hand
I am the wind that calls your name
I am the water and the flame
I am the darkness and the light
Put faith in me this Samhain night
The veil is torn and ever-old
The touch of death is ever cold
Yet while I live, be safe and sound
Put faith in me; be loved and bound

May the blessings of the season be upon you all.

~ Leslie

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2 Responses to Samhain

  1. Sarah Krause says:

    Epic and lovely–your talent is singular, my dear.

  2. Crow says:

    Fantastic, and a true Samhain blessing!

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