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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Jack in the Green

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

Unsurprisingly, the couple that sold handmade brooms at the Renn Fest turned out to be witches.

Now, Witch World is a small place, with three degrees of separation at most, so each year, I would make it a point to stop in, and we'd swap stories for a while.

One year I was absolutely wowed by a set of hand-crafted wooden bellows hanging on the wall, the surface beautifully carved with a Green Man face.

The symbolism could hardly be more apposite. Bellows = air = the breath of life. Whose image could they possibly bear other than that of the God of All Green Life, whose reciprocal breath gives life to all us Red-bloods. And bellows blow up the Fire, which burns....wood, of course, the Green Man's very flesh. Rendered in—what else?—wood.

Charmed, I took the bellows up to the till.

“Tell,” I said.

The Green Man bellows had been crafted by their coven woodcarver. “They're his first,” they told me. “He'll be delighted to hear that he's made a sale.”

I was in love, and the price was more than reasonable, so of course I bought the Green Man bellows. I've joked for years about how I seem to be redoing my house in Early Green Man, which is frankly no more than the truth. Walking through my home, you'll find more Green Men than you could...well, than you could shake a stick at.

Back at the Renn Fest a few weeks later, I naturally stopped in at Broomhilda to say “Blessed Be.”

Laughing, they told me the story. They'd called their coven brother to tell him that he'd made a sale, and asked if he wanted to carve another set.

“F*ck no,” he told them. “Making those was so much work, I couldn't possibly charge enough to make it worthwhile.”

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Jack Pumpkinhead Must Die

Old Jack is dead.

Valiantly he lit the Gates of Summer's End.

Then came freeze.

Now, with thaw, what the squirrels have left sits in a puddle of its own melt: sunken, falling in.

Once he was firm, thunkable. Now, if you tried to pick him up—but please don't try—he'd fall to spongy, rotten pieces.

Soon I'll be bringing out the snow shovel. Its first use of the season will be to shovel up what's left of Jack and take him back to compost.

Yes, Summer's gone, but you know Jack.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Angela
    Angela says #
    Once again, I love your post! Instead of looking mournfully at my deflated Jacks, I can laugh at Him skipping merrily from one fo
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Made me smile! Great photo too.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Dance of the Green Men

Called by the drums, we gather to the fire.

The chant begins.

Green God, Maple God,

living god of the forest:

hey ho hey ho

come to us.

It is the chant of calling. Biome by biome we call, back and forth: wetlands, prairies, tundra, orchards, gardens, fields, vineyards.

Hoo-hoo-hoo.

One from each quarter, the Green Men burst into our midst from behind, hooting. They rush in to the fire and turn, eyes bright.

Four there are: green, naked, rustling with leaves at head and wrist and ankle.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Master-in-Green

They say that he's god of women, and the artists show him naked amid the women's pulsing dance.

Verdelet, the witches named him: the Master-in-Green.

He's green.

(They say that in the old days they greened him with copper and ground malachite.)

There's a shaggy crown of leaves bound round his head, and leafy ruffs at his wrists and ankles as well. He rustles when he moves. He's the Green.

Green lord of chlorophyll, twin to the blood lord of beasts: like his brother, both wild and tame. Of the two, he's the rooted, the calm one, the peaceful, the thinker of long thoughts.

Don't be fooled.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Aline "Macha" O'Brien
    Aline "Macha" O'Brien says #
    Moving and beautiful! Thanks.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Jack in the Sheaf

That Jack guy sure does seem to get around. First there was Jack in the Green (you can hear his song here), soon to be followed (to the same tune) by Jack in the Heap (Compost, that is) and Jack in the Drift.

Here's a harvest version that we usually sing later on at our Harvest Supper, after we've all had a few and the kids have gone to bed.

Earthy folk, pagans.

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