Winter’s shadow has come once again and with it comes the harvest season. I pause to give thanks, expressing gratitude for all that I have. In celebration I served homemade chili and cornbread with a chocolate cake for dessert. Upon the altar rests an offering to the spirits; handpicked apples from my next-door neighbors yard, a cornbread muffin drizzled with local honey, and a glass of blackberry brandy.
In addition to the harvest celebration, I completed the funeral for a little friend who blessed me on her path. I spoon-fed and sheltered her, but she was to become a victim of Colony Collapse. I honored her passing as it was the only thing I could do for her in the end. I offered to her a bowl of honey and fresh flowers, laid her body among rose petals and lavender buds, then scattered tobacco and mugwort over her. I will keep her with me, maybe in the future she will bless me once more as an ally.I give thanks for the gifts I have been given in my life, I also give thanks to the bees for their gifts to the world and feel sorrow as I also give thanks for their sacrifice. I send my prayers out to the bees this season, may they find strength and prosperity.
It was a Friday night in June, under a moonless night when my older brother got into a very bad accident. I was almost nine years old (seven weeks before my birthday), when my mom scooped me up in the middle of the night and dropped me off at my grandmother’s house so that she could go to the hospital. I have discussed this memory with my mom as I was sure that I must have had the flu as I had obviously been hallucinating, but she assured me that this was the only night I could be remembering and that I did not have a fever. What happened to me that night was purely spontaneous and not caused by any illness, and while stress was a factor (although she had not yet told me about my brother) my reaction was still very curious if my hallucinations were brought on merely from stress alone.
I remember arriving at my grandmother’s house in my pajamas in the middle of the night and being put to bed in the living room in a Murphy Bed. A couple of the family portraits in the living room started talking to me. It was very scary, and I tried to ignore them but they would not shut up. Suddenly my mother and brother were on a seesaw on the coffee table, and they joined in the conversation. Ignoring them didn’t work and I couldn’t sleep out of fear. Despite this, I got out of bed and slowly started walking towards my grandmother’s bedroom. I am not sure which was worse, the ghost conversations in the living room or the prolonged, twin-sighted journey through the hallway. Normal vision and normal reality over-lapped with trance vision so that I saw both a dirt path and the hallway at the same time. They occupied the same space.