This veil-thin night, the year lays down its life, and the dead draw breath again to wait with us. This full-moon night, the Queen of Heaven gives birth in love and sorrow to a new year. She shows us how to sail through the darkest hours. I watch the moon with love, and I do her honor. I have no love for death, but I respect her. For the many who have passed to her this year, I give thanks for rest. For the grief they leave behind, I ask the comfort of the turning. Ancestors, draw near and feel how we love you still. Ancestors, draw back and take rest in Sister Death. I pour out this wine in your memory, and in acknowledgement of her. I pour out this milk to the Queen of Night and give thanks as she lights our way. I pour out my heart this momentous year in grief and in fear and in hope. I listen for the actions love may take. I lift my hands, to receive and build this promise of a new turning.
I don’t usually publish something I just wrote literally today. For one thing, the first-day version is never finished. This poem (?) doesn’t even have a title, so it’s definitely not done.
But this poem is for this day, this turning, this thin moment, this specific year. And as much as I wrote it for myself, it’s less useful if I keep it to myself.
I will release it into the world with my voice and my gestures and my offerings this evening, as night and the moon rise. No humans—at least, no living ones—will be present to share that. So I’m releasing it into the world this way too. Please feel free to use it however you like. Fix it, if it falls short for you. Receive and build.
Here’s a short, rambling reflection—entirely off-the-cuff, so excuse the long pauses—on the poem (?), this day, a fieldwalk, death, grief, joy. It ends with a blessing for you.