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Showing posts from April, 2011

I'd Rather Be a Pagan

There's another of the periodic discussions going on online over the word "Pagan" to describe a religious movement.  (These things tend to recur, like malarial fevers, every so often, despite the best efforts to settle them once and for all.)

As has happened before, the point has been made that Paganism, as a religious movement, is hard to define because there are so many things that can't be said categorically to define us all.  Some of us aren't polytheist (or theistic at all); others aren't earth-centered.  Some revere ancestors and attempt to follow their ways, while others don't.  And so on. 

As is probably clear, I find attempts to define the word "Pagan"--or to get us to abandon the word--frustrating.  Still, just because I keep having the same conversation again and again doesn't mean it isn't a good conversation to have.  And Scott Reimers, at Patheos, has a point when he says that, to the extent that Pagan is a label that defi…

Fresh Greens

Now that I have about six quarts of washed, tender young dandelion greens, the question is--

Sauteed with garlic, or in a salad?


(The chives are up and doing nicely, too.)

Thinking Of You Singing

I have good friends.

Knowing I've been wrestling with Hard Things this winter, my friend, the poet Penny Novack, sent me this poem--originally written for another friend, but, thinking of me recently, she said reminded her of me, too, and how she enjoys listening to us singing.

I'm honored.But also encouraged. And grateful to have such a friend.

Penny wrote:
Thinking Of You Singing

You are woven into the falling leaf, the budding branch
The daffodil white with snow.
You are still running through bright leaves which the great tree
Of your life has dropped.
You are the day's end and dawn and carry water drawn
From rain pools of childhood.
You travel on a carpet of life laid down by all who lived,
All who died
And you are birthing futures which will be shaped
By your will and hand.

Never say when death or destruction sweep the world
That you have not shielded love
That you have not made music
That you have not mattered.

--Penny Novack Never say when death or destruction sweep th…

On Hold

I have not been posting to this blog as regularly as in the past.  Partly that is because I'm writing other things in other places.  But that is not the biggest reason.
Truth is, this has been a really difficult year.  And most of what I write about on this blog is the way my spiritual life and my daily life intersect.  I write about what is hard for me, what I am wrestling with.
Unfortunately, I can't really do that this year.  Most of what I am wrestling with involves stories that are not just mine--in the sense that they are not mine to share.
One thing I learned early--the world is much less anonymous than we sometimes think it is.  If there is one person who should not see themselves discussed in public, you can count on their seeing any public discussion you put out there.  And I feel strongly that I can't write what it would harm or embarrass other people to write.
It's one thing to make myself vulnerable, another to make other people that way without their consent.

Weigh In and Winter Veggie Report

Since March 26, our family has generated another 14 oz. of plastic waste (as always, including the recyclables, given the limitations of that process with plastic).

Two nights ago, I reached a sad landmark: the last of our edible carrots have been used.

Over the winter, the winter keeping systems we fashioned worked very well.  Of the thirty pounds of carrots we laid down in sawdust, we might have lost five in recent weeks to rot--all the rest held up nicely, despite the surface discoloration they had almost from the first.  They remained as crisp and fresh as the day we brought them home up until the last week, when the temperatures took a turn for warm weather at last.

I suspect that, in another, shorter winter, we'd have lost more of them sooner.  But, still, I was impressed by how close to our actual need for carrots thirty pounds turned out to be, and how effective it was to store them in sawdust in the unheated garage.

I was disappointed in the CSA's potatoes--they were very…

No Unsacred Place

This is just a quick note; I've joined a new project of the Pagan Newswire Collective, their new nature and Paganism blog, No Unsacred Place

I'll be blogging there on an irregular basis, probably about twice monthly, in a column of my own, Earth Matters.  But there's a host of amazing bloggers who will also be writing regular columns and opinion pieces there, including Ali Lilly (whose project it is, and whose own blog, Meadowsweet and Myrrh, has long been one of my favorites), Heather, of Say the Trees Have Ears, and Ruby Sara, of Pagan Godspell.  In addition to several of my particular favorite writers, there will also be contributions by geologist, environmentalist, and Druid Meical abAwen; by the very talented Pagan writer S.C. Amis; and by the Druid of the sacred in suburbia, John Beckett.

I suppose the trick for me will be focusing each of my blogging projects appropriately.  I don't think that will actually be so difficult, in fact; Quaker Pagan Reflections wi…

A Different Kind of Knowing

The woods are so much more naked now than at any other time of year.

Yesterday, we had an April Fool snowstorm that left enough on the ground to close the schools.  Today, it is nearly all gone--only a few rags remain in shady corners of the woods to show where it had been the day before.  Today was warm, and sunny, and though I really should have been doing a hundred other things, I stole away for two hours late in the afternoon, to hike in the naked woods.

The wonderful thing about this bare and barren time of year is how far I can see through the trees. Even from the house, the effect is noticeable, but in the deep woods, it is easy to leave the established trails and explore.  Deer paths, not even noticeable once the green comes out, are almost as clear and plain as highways--highways marked by darker brown along the ground, where their droppings slot between the rotting leaves, and by drifts of hemlock needles, chewed off the nearby trees in such profusion, it looks as though a m…