Living the Wheel: Seasonal Musings of the Pagan Year

Thoughts and musings of the wheel of the Pagan Year.

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Nicole Kapise-Perkins

Nicole Kapise-Perkins

I am a writer and poet living in western Massachusetts. I have a degree in English Lit, with a focus on the nineteenth century, and am working toward a degree in Women's Studies as well. My work has previously appeared in The Pagan Activist, The Pagan Review, GrannyMoon's Morning Feast, and The Montague Reporter. I am currently working on a series of children's books, a novel trilogy, and a poetry manuscript (I simply can't do one thing at a time!). I also have several random fantasy-based short story projects that I attack once in a while.   I am a Dianic Pagan and practice Kitchen Wicca, and am also a Reiki Master. For a glimpse into my own little corner of reality, you can stop in and visit me at Ellie.
Litha: Light and Laughter

 

     It is the time of light, laughter, and joyful abandon. It is Litha! Let us celebrate with ruby-ripe strawberries and twinkling fireflies and achingly-pure blue skies reflected in chilly streams and sun-warmed ponds. I tend to get giddy this time of year; maybe it’s the child in me that hasn’t grown up yet, or perhaps the Kitchen Witch who is so excited by all of the fresh fruits and vegetables that summer brings, or maybe it’s just because I’m finally warm enough. Whatever the reason, they year’s turning at Litha always fills me with barely-contained excitement, though I don’t always get to act on it. My mind springs into action, suddenly there are so many things I want to do, and I can’t convince myself that I still have to balance all the fun things with work, which means working my way through my summer reading list while lounging by the lake is not a daily option. (Life isn’t perfect, after all.)

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Gifts from Decay

 

     Imbolc has recently passed, a festival of warm candlelight and plans and intentions; it is the festival at which we sow our goals for the year to watch as they sprout and grow, and lead us to the change we wish to see.

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Unmoored

   This is the time of year that I look inward, thinking back over the year and what I have done. I meditate on how I could have done things differently, or better, or not at all. I usually find things I am disappointed about, chastising myself for everything I wanted to do but didn't. I find some few items I am pleased about, usually related to my children and their success.

   Coming toward the end of this year, I felt that my reflections were going to be different. My life and career saw so many amazing changes: I received a promotion from a job I enjoyed to a job I loved so much I genuinely looked forward to going to work every day. I went back to college, intent on pursuing a degree that would bolster my career. Beyond this, my family was happy and healthy, our finances good even in the wake of three children's fall birthdays and the looming holidays. For the first time ever, I could confidently say things were good.

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  • Solitarieone
    Solitarieone says #
    Thinking about you and your family during this Solstice season, Nicole. Remember: This, too, shall pass. That reminder has gotte

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Three Things

 

An Irish proverb tells us there are three slender things that support the world: a stream of cow’s milk into a pail, a growing blade of corn, and a thread being woven into cloth. To the ancient Celts, these things were staples of life.

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The Queen of Pentacles: Guide and Mentor

   Each day I do a Tarot reading. The time of day varies--Sunday is really the only day I do a morning reading. Sometimes it's when I get home from work around 4:30 and I am sitting with a mug of tea. Other times it's after dinner at 7:30. Most usually it's just before I go to bed, and by that time it's late enough where I don't do a full reading  and instead do a single-card draw.

     For the last three months or so, the single card I regularly select is the Queen of Pentacles. I use Kris Waldherr's Goddess Tarot, and in that deck the Queen of Pentacles is depicted as a beautiful silk-draped Indian woman, regal and self-assured. (In Waldherr's deck the suit of Pentacles is associated with the goddess Lakshmi.)

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  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Sweet! Thanks!

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Seeded With Potential

     My seed catalogs have started to arrive in the mail. The glossy summer-bright photos are inspiring and awe-inducing (Moon and Stars Melons! Nebraska Wedding Tomatoes!), and also humbling. Each packet of seeds contains worlds of potential What in this universe holds more promise than a seed? Each tiny package is a life in stasis. Every seed on this planet contains knowledge: knowledge of self, knowledge of its needs and its future. A seed knows not to grow until it has been placed in the proper environment. Each seed knows when to allow itself to break apart and become something else, stretching toward the sun's light and the future.

    Every seed is aware of its purpose. It knows why it was placed in this world and what it needs to do to achieve that  purpose. We are not so fortunate. We lack the inner instruction manual that seeds possess. All too often we feel as though we are floundering, struggling to break out of our confines and grow into the Self we are meant to be.

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Making it Work

     Yule this year passed in a blur of work and school. We sent the little boys off to school Tuesday, giving ourselves one final day to finish holiday preparations: breads and cookies baked, packages wrapped and decorated, the sunfire collected by my husband and the Hestia candle on the stove top lit, ready for the rush of children and the Mystery of the longest night.


     As each year passes faster and faster, it seems, I am continually caught unaware, needlessly so, I feel. I know in January when the Solstice will occur: all I need to do is flip to the back of the calendar and look. In fact, I already know that next Yule will be December 21, 2017, and that the solstice will occur at 11:28 in the morning. This knowledge should prepare me, but the reality is that I will be so caught up in the day to day details of secular living that spiritual observances are often pushed aside until the last minute. I often feel I am shortchanging myself.

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