It’s just overcast at the moment, but the rain is coming, probably not long after daylight. It looks like we’re south of the heaviest, but there’s a big swirl out there in the ocean. It should taper off after lunchtime and we’re under a SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY until 3pm. 54F, wind at 2-7mph and gusting, AQI27, UV4. 100% chance of rain today and 10% tonight. Tomorrow should be nice, but Monday has a good chance of being a repeat of today. After that it’s all showers and clouds out to the end of the forecast, and no more than 50% chance of rain.
Yesterday Tempus got in at 8:30am. The papers were awfully late, but he whizzed through deliveries. I got up to participate in one class, then went back to bed. I got up and watched a 2nd class and kept dozing off. Tempus got up and made coffee and then I was ok, taking a class in the civilization collapse around 1177BCE. Tempus made a lovely meal of scrambled eggs, bacon and pancakes while I was doing computer work.
I eventually got a nap, then Tempus helped me make up some kits for possible orders. …and then back to the Mab’s site. Tempus headed out around 2. I had spaced getting the astronomy stuff, so I got that going while I was putting this together.
I still have more to do on the Mab’s galleries and more to do plants, since I have sweetgrass, echinacea, sage and two figs to get into the ground. That doesn’t even count the starts that need to be potted, now that I have some table to work on. Hopefully things won’t be too messy, weather-wise, although I can do them right in front of the door and then sweep, afterward, I guess.
I’ll probably be harvesting greens and such, since I need to do some salad and then probably a chicken and garlic soup.
Today’s plant, sacred to both St. Dorothea (patron saint of florists, which is the attribution that you usually see) and to Aphrodite, is the Jacinth or blue Hyacinth, Hyacinthus orientalis. It is highly poisonous, but has a use or two in the herbalist’s pharmacopeia. It is a lovely plant with a sweet scent that is a garden favorite. It hybridizes easily and will propagate itself in the right environment. – Male, Venus, Water – Promotes happiness, peace of mind and peaceful sleep. Attracts love, luck, and good fortune. Named for Hiakinthos, Greek God of homosexual love, this is the patron herb for gay men. Guards against nightmares when used as an oil, burned as incense, or included in dream pillows. Carry in amulet or sachet to ease grief or the pain of childbirth. More on this plant here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyacinthus_orientalis or here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyacinth_%28plant%29 and on St. Dorothea here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothea_of_Caesare
Today is the date in 1986 when the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant near Chernobyl, Ukrainian SSR, suffered a steam explosion, resulting in a fire, a nuclear meltdown, and the evacuation and resettlement of over 336,000 people around Europe. It apparently started from an unauthorized experiment, a couple of large power surges and then graphite being exposed to air, which caused it to catch fire. The long-term effects are pretty horrendous and haven’t been caught up with, yet. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chernobyl_Nuclear_Power_Plant More on the disaster itself here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chernobyl_disaster
The shop is closed for the duration. Need something? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook or email at firstname.lastname@example.org We should be able to accommodate requests and even allow a little shopping, one person at a time.
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
Waxing Moon Magick – The waxing moon is for constructive magick, such as love, wealth, success, courage, friendship, luck or healthy, protection, divination. Any working that needs extra power, such as help finding a new job or healings for serious conditions, can be done now. Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 5/7 at 3:45am. Diana’s Bow – On the 3rd day after the new moon you can (weather permitting) see the tiny crescent in the sky, the New Moon holding the Old Moon in her arms. Begin on your goals for the next month. A good time for job interviews or starting a project. Take a concrete step! God/dess aspect: Daughter/Son/Innocence – Associated God/dess: Vesta, Horus. Phase ends on 4/27 at 7:26am.
The waxing crescent Moon stands with Aldebaran below Venus this evening, as shown above. The earthshine within its horns (“the old moon on the new moon’s arms”) will now be in much better view than yesterday. The Moon’s dark limb will occult Epsilon Tauri in the Hyades, magnitude 3.5, for eastern Canada and the northernmost eastern US.
Today marks the 30th anniversary of the deployment of the Hubble Space Telescope. This groundbreaking observatory has played a crucial part in numerous discoveries in the decades since its first images, and remains one of astronomers’ best tools today.
According to James Fanson, project manager of the Giant Magellan Telescope currently under construction in Chile, “The Hubble Space Telescope revolutionized astronomy in the same way Galileo’s telescope did 400 years ago when first turned to the heavens. Hubble’s images reached the level of art, and its discoveries touched the imagination of ordinary people around the world. Hubble became the ‘people’s telescope,’ and it will always have a cherished place in our history and culture.”
You can celebrate Hubble’s success by challenging yourself to find one of its frequent targets: M1, also known as NGC 1952 or the Crab Nebula. This famous supernova remnant resulted from the death of a massive star; Chinese astronomers recorded the event in the year A.D. 1054, when a “guest star” briefly appeared in the nighttime — and daytime — sky. All that remains of the luminary is a tiny pulsar (a spinning neutron star) surrounded by what was once the atmosphere and interior of the star itself, now a tangled, glowing nebula.
Although the Moon is nearby, it’s a mere 7 percent lit, so a larger scope should still reveal the Crab’s faint, nebulous glow. Unlike the highly detailed Hubble images, M1 appears only as a small thumbprint of light through an amateur scope, but it’s still a tantalizing target to search out for yourself. Tonight, the Crab sits a little less than 10° southeast of Venus, which provides an easy signpost on your way to finding the faint object.
Mercury is out of sight in conjunction with the Sun.
Old Farmer’s Almanac April Sky Map! – https://www.almanac.com/night-sky-map-april-minor-constellations
Goddess Month of Maia runs from 4/18 – 5/15
Celtic Tree Month of Saille Willow Apr 15 – May 12
Runic half-month of Mannaz/ Man, April 14-28 A time when the archetypal reality of the human condition should be meditated upon. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, 1992 Runic half-month of Laguz/ Lagu, 4/29-5/13 Representing the flowing and mutable forces of water, Lagu symbolizes life, growth and waxing power of this time of year.
©2020 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Saille/Willow, Apr 15 – May 12 – The Willow in the Tree alphabet stands for the female and lunar rhythms of life. She is water-seeking, thriving from preference on the damp margins of lakes and streams or across the low-lying water meadows. Water and the tidal movements of the sea are governed by the pull of the moon. The moon in its monthly rhythms is female, contrasting with the male sun’s daily and yearly turnings. In several ways, the Celts held women in higher regard than we do today. On the material level, women were property owners, and whoever controlled the property controlled the marriage. Women of all types and ages appeared in the Celtic pantheon, the spiritual strength and life-giving qualities given by both female and male recognized equally. There were colleges of Druidesses – learned women and teachers – respected equally for their gifts of see-ship, often expressed through dreams, or night visions.
Magical Associations: Romantic love, healing, protection, fertility, magic for women.
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Sa 25 High 2:07 AM 7.6 6:15 AM Rise 7:52 AM 2
~ 25 Low 8:59 AM -0.3 8:14 PM Set 11:04 PM
~ 25 High 3:21 PM 6.4
~ 25 Low 8:47 PM 2.6
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Abundance and joy enhance all my thoughts and feelings.
~ Chicago is the product of modern capitalism, and, like other great commercial centers, is unfit for human habitation. – Eugene V. Debs (1855-1926) US Socialist Leader
~ If you want more joy, serve. If you want more money, solve problems. If you want more freedom, face your fears. – Sandy Diva
~ A pound of pluck is worth a ton of luck. – James A. Garfield (1831-1881) 20th US President
~ He is great enough that is his own master. – Joseph Hall
Whan that April with his showres soote (that is, sweet)
The droughte of March hath perced to the roote,
And bathed every veine in swich licour,
Of which vertu engendred is the flowr; – Chaucer; Canterbury Tales (ll. 1-4), modernized for The Norton Anthology of English Literature
Simple ways to celebrate the feast-days of the Celtic Year.
The Return of the Sun
Beltaine is an anglicization of the Irish “Bealtaine” or the Scottish “Bealtuinn.” While “tene” clearly means “fire,” nobody really knows whether Bel refers to Belenus, a pastoral god of the Gauls, or is from “bel,” simply meaning “brilliant.” It might even derive from “bil tene” or “lucky fire” because to jump between two Beltane fires was sure to bring good fortune, health to your livestock, and prosperity.
When the Druids and their successors raised the Beltaine fires on hilltops throughout the British Isles on May Eve, they were performing a real act of magic, for the fires were lit in order to bring the sun’s light down to earth. In Scotland, every fire in the household was extinguished, and the great fires were lit from the need-fire which was kindled by 3 times 3 men using wood from the nine sacred trees. When the wood burst into flames, it proclaimed the triumph of the light over the dark half of the year.
Then the whole hillside came alive as people thrust brands into the newly roaring flames and whirled them about their heads in imitation of the circling of the sun. If any man there was planning a long journey or dangerous undertaking, he leaped backwards and forwards three times through the fire for luck. As the fire sunk low, the girls jumped across it to procure good husbands; pregnant women stepped through it to ensure an easy birth, and children were also carried across the smoldering ashes. When the fire died down, the embers were thrown among the sprouting crops to protect them, while each household carried some back to kindle a new fire in their hearth. When the sun rose that dawn, those who had stayed up to watch it might see it whirl three times upon the horizon before leaping up in all its summer glory.
The Rites of Spring
Beltaine was a time of fertility and unbridled merrymaking, when young and old would spend the night making love in the Greenwood. In the morning, they would return to the village bearing huge budding boughs of hawthorn (the may-tree) and other spring flowers with which to bedeck themselves, their families, and their houses. They would process back home, stopping at each house to leave flowers, and enjoy the best of food and drink that the home had to offer. In every village, the maypole—usually a birch or ash pole—was raised, and dancing and feasting began. Festivities were led by the May Queen and her consort, the King who was sometimes Jack-in-the-Green, or the Green Man, the old god of the wildwood. They were borne in state through the village in a cart covered with flowers and enthroned in a leafy arbor as the divine couple whose unity symbolized the sacred marriage of earth and sun.
To Celebrate Beltaine Today
* Arise at dawn and wash in the morning dew: the woman who washes her face in it will be beautiful; the man who washes his hands will be skilled with knots and nets.
* If you live near water, make a garland or posy of spring flowers and cast it into stream, lake or river to bless the water spirits.
* Prepare a May basket by filling it with flowers and goodwill, then give it to one in need of caring, such as an elderly friend.
* Beltaine is one of the three “spirit-nights” of the year when the faeries can be seen. At dusk, twist a rowan sprig into a ring and look through it, and you may see them.
* Make a wish as you jump a bonfire or candle flame for good luck—but make sure you tie up long skirts first!
* Make a May bowl —wine or punch in which the flowers of sweet woodruff or other fragrant blossoms are soaked—and drink with the one you love.
The fair maid who, the first of May,
Goes to the fields at break of day
& washes in dew from the hawthorn tree,
Will ever after handsome be.
– English folk rhyme
May day! Delightful day!
Bright colours play the vale along.
Now wakes at morning’s slender ray
Wild and gay the blackbird’s song.
Now comes the bird of dusty hue,
The loud cuckoo, the summer-lover;
Branchy trees are thick with leaves;
The bitter, evil time is over…
Loaded bees with puny power
Goodly flower-harvest win;
Cattle roam with muddy flanks;
Busy ants go out and in.
Through the wild harp of the wood
Making music roars the gale —
Now it settles without motion,
On the ocean sleeps the sail.
Men grow mighty in the May,
Proud and gay the maidens grow;
Fair is every wooded heights;
Fair and bright the plain below…
Loudly carols the lark on high,
Small and shy his tireless lay,
Singing in wildest, merriest mood,
Delicate-hued, delightful May. – Irish 9th century
Silliness – Punny Business Slogan – In a Veterinarian’s waiting room: “Be back in 5 minutes. Sit! Stay!”