Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I should be sleeping

but I smell rain

the cicadas sing

as the metallic air

stings the night

and the humid croak

of frogs kiss the wind

As my potions red

and brown cascade along the counter

I know the coughs will go away

even with the stormy weather

I take my potions sweet and bitter.

As the water bubbles

I add oats, cinnamon, and clove

with cardamom and ginger

spicing up the brew.

It will be pouring by the dawn

I hope for rainbows.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Wilderness Skills kicked off our first day of courses back at the Hollow today. The land smells of honey and hay and is showing the first colors of Autumn. Despite being busy all day, the breathing of the land filled my heartbeat with rhythm, grounding, and solace. It was good to be back.

The Skills posse is small this year - just the four die-hards and their devoted mentors. How I love their familiar faces and newly grown vertical inches. How I love their glowy eyes and sighs of "finally" when they return. How they bring the stories of the land to life.

I long sometimes to go back and ride a day in their boots. And vicariously I suppose I do. As they pressure flake, swamp-walk, groundhog skin, cattail eat... I feel if nothing else at least the next generation will be able to make a fire and feed me if necessary:). Even if only theoretical - it serves a profound need of mine to see a few children into adulthood with some valid Earthskills.

Despite not hiking the trails today, the land seemed to come to me. The wild grapes line the rock walls, the chipmunks chirp outside my office door. The amaranth punctuate the meadows, and the wild cucumber; unruly with spines.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Irreverent choice?

Sometimes staying authentic means pissing people off, disappointing them, or involuntarily shattering their images of you. It's not done maliciously. It's not done with spite. However it is haunting if you've attached your own self worth to their approval. But life is not an unspoken barter of worth. In the end, what matters is how you feel about your choices - are they bringing you closer to your truth, or closer to others' agendas? Are you actually breaking an agreement you made - or simply breaking someones made up expectations?

And yet it is so often that on the other side, if we as humble humans are open enough, we can realize a place that contains the richness of composted illusions and fears. We can come to a place of compassionate support and mutual honesty. We can come to a place where we find the breakdown is a gifting of deeper strength. We can discern the beautiful edges that may have lined the old structures well, and take them with us for new trim.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Herbal Roots Giveaway Monday: Clay Pendant

Giveaway Monday: Clay Pendant


I have a couple of Rebekah's herbal pendants myself and I adore them! I of course *must* have the rose one, lol, but whoever wins this treasure will feel the same I am certain.

and Share - tweet - FB - blog etc for a chance to win!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Time With Trees

I love trees. They make my heart flutter.

I've spent the last couple years just adoring them; gathering some knowledge, practicing recognition, and making medicines. And of course I continue, as it's such an ongoing process.

My most treasured learnings thus far have been from Black Birch, Black Cherry, Hickory, Witch Hazel, Alder, Sassafras, Willow, Apple, Linden, Cottonwood, Juniper, Locust, Pine, Peach, and Elm.

In fact I would venture to say that collection could cover quite a panacea. I nearly feel sad for states with less abundance and varieties of trees!

As I marvel through my plethora of tinctures and elixirs overflowing their allotted counter and cabinet space, I ponder what I might share with my readers. Some days words just don't cut it. How can I possibly tell you what my black cherry elixir tastes like, or how unusually warming and comforting my black birch elixir feels?

What I really want to say, is go spend some time with trees. Smell the bark of the cherry trees. Taste the leaves of the birch. Draw each part of the tree. Watch what creatures love it for home.
Log how long it takes for the leaves to turn color, then fall. Get to know your trees.

I could pontificate or get esoteric; sharing about my thoughts while gathering black cherries. How they spoke to me of balancing labor and fruits of labor. How they coaxed me into a pleasurable rhythm as I collected, making the work easier and the reward greater. How I knew we had more rain than New Hampshire by the size and moisture in the cherry. How the Natives prized them for lung and heart conditions.

But will those be your thoughts? Wisdom you can own? Maybe not. Perhaps the cherry elixir will clear your cough the way it does mine - but my time with cherry can't replace yours, no matter how profound it was. My wind and sky and temperature on that particular day will be different. My heart was listening for wisdom applicable to my own context - and why would a friend tell all their friends the same advice?

Perhaps I can sell a bottle of my willow tincture, even filled with all the energetic magic of my time while I gathered and prepared it. But what if, instead of downing some while driving, you took that tincture while sitting under a willow tree?

So there is a part of me that wants to arrive here, for all you lovely readers and plant friends, and announce a grand medicinal realization - it makes me sound professional, wise, and well-studied. It would make me feel as though I just gave everyone some great gift of myself or stamped success on my day. But I'm not sure that today I need approval; what is greater in my heart, when I really listen, is a desire to sit under a tree with the glinting sun on it's blades, hear the lessons meant for me, and know that some others out there in the world are getting their very own session of tree healing too.