Imbolc, again

Late January groin on the Delaware Bay

An Cailleach Bhearra wandered around back in the 10th century in western Ireland, eating “seaweed, salmon, and wild garlic” (my kind of appetite), looking for firewood.

If the day was bright and sunny, beware–she had gathered plenty of wood and was set for many cold days ahead. 

If the day was gray, she didn’t bother, and she will make the days warm up again. Sound familiar?

Imbolc again.
Words shrink as the sunlight grows.

A few years ago in late January I watched a crow at the ferry jetty caw caw caw at a gull sharing a light post. The gull did not respond.

The crow swooped down to the pavement, picked up a piece of paper, then returned to its perch near the gull.

The crow carefully ripped up the paper, piece by piece, dropping each piece, one by one, watching each piece until it hit the ground, looking at the gull between pieces as if to say Hey!

When done, the crow cawed once more, and this time the gull squawked back. The crow, now seemingly satisfied, nodded, and then flew to a trash can and cawed at a few human folk, one of whom cawed back.

Dandelion flower reflecting late January light

I have no idea what that was about, nor could I justify discussing it in my classroom. So I don’t.
Curriculum stops at the point where humans are besides the point.

That makes sense if you live in a world of words. It makes less sense at the water’s edge. If we keep ignoring things where humans are besides the point, we will become just that.

With the return of the sun comes the return of my sanity, when I feel comfortable letting go of the words again, learning (again) that what I thought was besides the point is the point.

This happens whether we’re present or not.

The darkest 12 weeks of the year have ended, again and for now.

3 Replies to “Imbolc, again”

  1. I always feel like I can breathe again at Imbolc. I know in my bones that the light is returning. My days are literally more expansive, and I am letting that space warm. Seed catalogs are calling.
    I feel less “grim about the mouth” as Melville called that Novembery feeling of gritted teeth and tightened shoulders.
    We made it through the dark days, Doyle! Let us eat salmon and seaweed and wild garlic and dance!

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