I did it. 3:00 AM. The house was silent, even the dog wouldn't leave his comfy bed. I blessed the herbs, prepped the bottles, took a deep breath, and pulled on my winter gear. Winter Solstice was but 2 hours away and much to do! This was the day of the Great Jupiter/Saturn conjunction as well as Yule and I didn't want to miss that dynamic energy flow.
The ritual circle glittered with mounds of snow. Yes, I could have shoveled but I wanted that amazing experience of nature. I plodded to the altar. Set up the wreath and the Mother Candle. Nice! My altar cloth? Snow. So pretty!
To the bonfire. I have a woodpile but I thought I'd use some of those starter logs to ensure this ritual rolled out on time. I opened the box.
Fifty fire starters? What the? I bowed my head. Ritz-a-fritz! I should have READ the box, not looked at the label on the shelf. Okay. No worries. I slog to the woodpile and dig through the snow with my bare hands to move the tarp. I grab what I think will work. Time is moving and I need to fire this circle up! If 2020 has taught me anything it is this: Don't Panic. Don't count on the old. Be resourceful. Think anew. Flow. Flow. Flow! Into the shed. Collect the huge bag of dried herbs and roots from this year's garden. I was going to use them for next year's Butzman; but, necessity calls for them now. This fire will be super fragrant!
I have a brand new cinnamon broom, white lightning, and a flick-my-bic lighter -- I am ready to go!
Wait. I have no place to set the camera. Uh-oh.
I try to wake my husband. Sigh. Forget that. So...I knock on my son's door. "Nickolas? Nickolas?"
"What's the matter?" (garbled)
I squinch my face. "Um. I need a camera op person?"
"You have got to be kidding me. What time is it?"
"In the morning?"
"Uh (clearing throat)...yes. Winter Solstice is exactly at 5:02 AM." To his credit, he could have said - go away! He could have said things I can't print. But, instead, he said...nothing. Just rose slowly like a specter in the dim light and put out his hand.
So there we were, my son and I, standing outside at the edge of the woods, as the smell of strong booze lit the night (I use it as a fire starter, I don't drink it, no kidding -- but, my spirits do) with the most amazing bonfire you have ever seen! Did I mention I poured the entire box of firestarters on top of everything else?
that and a fifth on the logs...we are so good to go
I took the burning cinnamon broom and swept the sky intoning: "I conjure thee O Great Circle of Power!...." at awe as I watched the sparks flow across the circle and above the central fire in a whirlwind of vibrant flame, my voice bouncing on the snow, the sound rushing through the woods, kissing the trees and embracing all within.
Witch is the name.
PS: The magickal oil made during this ritual is available in my http://www.whispermagick.com shop