Day of the Dead

This holiday – along with Halloween/Samhain – has long been one of my favorites; now it is always bittersweet, remembering my mother, who passed away over a year ago. Pagans of many cultures and eras have embraced the season’s winding down, its association with death, its symbolism of the destruction of the old making way for the creation of the new. Basil, mint, parsley, tomatoes, cucumber

Here at home we’ve been madly gathering the waning bounty of our garden, making gazpacho from the sweetest tomatoes and cucumbers, and trying our hand at canning and preserving. Our yard is covered with leaves, the earth redolent of humus, just waiting to nourish next year’s growth.

Watching the light fail at the end of the shortening days, our plants wilting and returning to the earth from where they came, I’m struck by how we try to stave off the effects of time and mortality. We can’t do it, but we still try – a very human, and life-affirming effort.


About thislittleplot

Writer, hiker, loafer
This entry was posted in Garden, Mythology, Nature, Seasons, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Day of the Dead

  1. owlwoman says:

    I love this time of year, too, but I understand your mixed feelings. This is probably old news to you, but I wondered if you’re familiar with Dion Fortune’s ‘Book of the Dead’. It describes the transition between life and death and how to approach The End. I’ve just got hold of it and first impressions are that it sets down exactly what it’s taken me decades to work out.

    • Thanks for the recommendation. I’m familiar with Fortune, but not with that particular book; will definitely check it out.

      • owlwoman says:

        Now halfway through the book, you should know that it comes from a Christian angle, and is at times a bit dismissive of Pagan/pre-Christian ceremonies, but if you can overlook that, the general principles of the book are pretty amazing. Also, the recent death of Druid Olivia Robertson has been covered by Phillip Carr-Gomm on his WP site – Robertson was more than happy at the prospect of moving on. You might find his posts on her interesting reading.

      • Good to know; thanks for the information. I am open to most things as long as they don’t try to shove one dogma or another down my throat!

  2. Shonna says:

    My favorite time of year as well. Lovely that you are canning and preserving what you’ve so lovingly helped to grow in your garden, it can’t be beat! Huzzah! As I read what you have written here, I think about how Chris and I are ending a lifetime in the Bay Area in a few weeks only to begin a new life in the Pacific Northwest in Spring. It is emotional… and exciting!

    • Yes, very emotional. I’m sure, like all transitions, this big change will have some bumps along the road, but I know you both will take time to enjoy the excitement of this new chapter that will soon begin!

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