It is the time of suspension and falling and the glimmering colours before the quiet release …the most gentle sweep to sustain into the dead still of the Cailleach’s grip.
hawthorn and sorbus berries, scarlet and vermillion – October CRUSH – golden stars of maple and sycamore, fallen acorns hatching pink seekers all rain-swept in growth or in decay or in offering. I play hide and seek in the long grass, picking up small handfuls of vibrant matter, five or six berries at a time,
crossing my path is a stone holding down the five limbed star of a field maple, pinned somehow purposefully there by wind, or weather, or dog , or child. Another leaf dwindles and turns in the nave of arcing branches amid the falling surrender of leaves
Each day the same way in, the way down promises clouds and skies – the swirling shifts of weather even in this small crucible of the Glen
and the small oak by the well is still yielding an abundance of acorns into the ground where the mowers will one day come – I arrive and pocket on successive days the small oak beings, some still in their caps, some knocked out of them, so ready to become earthed in, already sending energetic feelers for the deep, my dress and coat bulging with new prospects; some for sowing with Trees Please, and some for throwing on the highlands, a good enough ritual for Samhain on the cusp of a new year.
And the next day I stand sheltering under another mother oak, before more i do more castings of baby oaks brought from the valley floor
This third day of gathering I find a seedling has begun rooting where it fell, here under the crown of mama tree, so I must pull, more than pluck it from the ground, these babies will take their chances on the steep hard slopes of the valley’s walls, must find a resting place among the bracken skin, which has taken over from the gorse, whose skeletons remain withered now and blackened from successive spring burnings … I am praying the wind and rain will drive these little time capsules into the ground where they will take root out of reach of next year’s fires and the next and the next…until strong enough to spread roots and oak arm in oak arm can shoulder more.