Season and Spirit: Magickal Adventures Around the Wheel of the Year

The Wheel of the Year is the engine that drives NeoPagan practice. Explore thw magick of the season beyond the Eight Great Sabbats.

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The Green Season: the Approach of Spring and Finding Our Work

The past few weeks have been wintery indeed. Yes it is March, but there is still plenty of snow in my yard, and there's more snow in the forecast. It was not until yesterday that a sudden warm snap began to hint at the Spring that is due to arrive any time now. So while many of my friends have been chattering at me about tree buds, or cherry blossoms, or legions of daffodils suddenly popping up in a sunny patch of their yards, it all sounds like a fable to me, and I didn't quite believe any of it.

A Rocky Mountain Spring takes its own sweet damn time anyway, and March and April are our snowiest months traditionally. So as weary as one gets to be of Winter by now, we are also grateful for the cold and the snow, for a deeper snow pack, for flowers that bloom in concert with arrival of the birds and insects that feed on them. All of us have noticed the rhythms and cycles of the seasons where we live, and no doubt all of us have noticed changes in recent years. I certainly have—drier, colder Winters that end abruptly, hot smoky Summers. So I am perfectly content for the Winter to go on as long as it needs to. I have lots of work to do in the garden before planting can start. I have plenty to do in my house and office, clearing and cleaning before the new projects of the year can truly begin. I may grumble about having to shift yet another five inches of new fallen snow, or having to run errands in 20 degrees of icy fog, but given the alarming specter of permanent climate change, a real Winter, with a real Winter's bite, is somewhat reassuring.

But I heard something yesterday morning that caught me off guard, something I haven’t heard since the Fall—woodpeckers. I looked outside and saw cedar waxwings—a pair!--digging into a dead cottonwood trunk for bugs. The Sun was still below the treeline, and it was bitterly cold, but birds were stubbornly twittering in the privet, in the bare apple trees. The air smelled faintly of pollen and mud, the gutters were noisy with running water. In the distance I saw the faintest hint of green haze—the Green Fire of photosynthesis—at play in all the tree branches and in the shrubs. Things felt different than the morning before. It was one step closer to Spring.

Although the Wheel is constantly turning, and the spin of the seasonal cycle is constantly in motion, sometimes we are not able to see these patterns in our own lives and in our magickal work. Sometimes these changes require more of us than simply going with the flow:sometimes they demand that we be actively engaged in the transformations of our planet and ourselves. I was not fully ready to trust that Spring was coming until I noticed my houseplants. One Persian violet and one pineapple plant, both of them very unhealthy looking when I brought them inside last Fall, have subsisted in the darkish corners of my living room all Winter. To say I treat my houseplants with benign neglect is pretty kind, so imagine my surprise when I discovered that the violet was covered in just-opening pink blooms, was blooming like it hadn’t done in years really, through no effort on my part. And the pineapple, which I was sure was dead or close to it, was sprouting again, had sent up a vibrant green healthy shoot among very desiccated old leaves. They have been in a dark corners in a heated house, so there is no way the changes happening outside could possibly be effecting them, and still, they are responding to some deep and mysterious rhythm whose timing is directing this new growth. I watered them both and moved them into stronger light and could aalmost hear them sighing “ahh!” as I did. I knew that Spring was really coming.


 How do we respond to the growing light and vitality of the awakening Earth? How do our minds and bodies stretch and move? The receding snow, the warming temps, and all the imminent vitality returning to the land calls us out of our homes, out of our own shadowy, internal places, and into the light. What do we find when we venture out? Our work? Our loves? Our play and pleasures and passions? Do we encounter what we are ready to commit to? Do we find the strength and vision n ourselves to move up to the next set of lessons, the next pressing set of concerns that demand our love and labor? I'm not exactly sure yet, what the waxing year might be calling me to do. I have hints and ideas, I have the dedications I made at Imbolc. This is not entirely clear, but the rising energetic tide is undeniable, and allied with it, we can step into our power, into gnosis, and into a deeper intimacy with Source.

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Tagged in: Spring Equinox
Leni Hester is a Witch and writer from Denver, Colorado. Her work appears in the Immanion anthologies "Pop Culture Grimoire," "Women's Voices in Magick" and "Manifesting Prosperity". She is a frequent contributor to Witches and Pagans and Sagewoman Magazines.


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