Happy Beltane. Okay a day late, but let’s treat this holiday as though it lasts the whole month of May. Our Beltane this year is so strange. First, the sky has been a constant brooding gray with tropical winds buffeting the trees, the clouds on the edge of an explosive downpour, but not giving in. For days this heavy dark threat has been hovering overhead.
Then on top of all that, the BP oil spill in the Gulf creeps closer to the marshes along Venice and the Breton Wildlife Refuge. This morning a fleet of volunteer fishers went out in their boats to put a long line of floating boom in the water, an effort to contain the oil. It doesn’t look good. The wind is pushing the chop over the boom. Those people in their boats are noble and brave . . . and, let’s face it . . . desperate. Their livelihood is out there in the water. It’s dying . . . again.
Emily’s post today follows.
#742, ca. 1863
Four Trees — upon a solitary Acre —
Or Order, or Apparent Action —
The Sun — upon a Morning meets them —
The Wind —
No nearer Neighbor — have they —
But God —
The Acre gives them — Place —
They — Him — Attention of Passerby —
Of Shadow, or of Squirrel, haply —
Or Boy —
What Deed is Theirs unto the General Nature —
They severally — retard — or Further —
She asks: Can’t we leave well enough alone?
Beltane asks us to fall into an embrace of the natural world, to recognize it as the source of all life. Also to see our own nature reflected back to us as procreative, lavish, abundant. To plunge into the cycle of life by making life. At the opening of May we celebrate our place in the greenness of things.
This year, with Mercury retrograde in Taurus (imagine a 3,000-pound bull zonked out on Xanax), Beltane is a somber, slow phase of missed connections. Things not falling into place, green or otherwise. We can’t embrace the possibility of future life, not with any degree of unencumbered joy, when this doom of human folly creeps up on us. Emily points out that whatever we do in the world will naturally result in our interference in a plan unknown to us. Now a suppurating wound in the ocean’s floor hemorrhages black blood. She was right, as always. If only more of us would listen to Emily.