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Brighid’s Thaw

January 31st, 2013


Philip is deep in the creative process of writing his next book and has asked if I would help out by contributing a blog piece each week. This both excited and terrified me. Knowing what a tricky, slippery thing inspiration can be, I have fretted about having anything of value to say, finding the words, feeling confident that I have something to contribute.

Then I remembered that here in the Northern Hemisphere, Imbolc is finally and thankfully upon us. It is traditionally seen as a festival of inspiration; it certainly feels a relief to be anticipating those first green shoots after a long, cold winter. And yet, the irresistible sense of anticipation felt as the year gradually accelerates can lead to many a false start when we realise that the chill still nips at us; that our energy still curls in upon itself, not yet fully awake to its own imminent renewal.

It is the time of snowdrops, their delicate blossoms deceptively resilient and hardy. They are the tenderness of all new beginnings; the toughness underlying life’s desire to experience itself. I can feel the quickening strongly and yet I also feel my own slowness; my own winter pace, heavy as upon waking from a long sleep. The year breaks us in gently, Brighid’s palms cupped tenderly around the spark that will soon ignite our inner resurgence.

Brighid comes with her warmth and energy and quickens the seeds of our new life; she comes with the life-giving heat of her fire to thaw all that is frozen and trapped within us; she comes with the melting release of her healing waters, cleansing away the staleness of our spirits, the winter debris of our hearts. She is the liberation of the land from winter’s grip; freeing us from our own stagnation. She is the bright spark of life and inspiration that burns in us all; the hearth fire at the centre of our homes and hearts, sustaining and warming – a place to gather and draw inspiration, nourishment and comfort. She is also the fire of passion that animates our creativity that we may create our world anew; that we too may become the spring.

In this spirit, I leave you with a poem for Imbolc and hope that the first tender shoots break through those icy coverings of stagnation, that you surrender your winter stasis to the quickening…

Winter had settled over me,
The frost sealing my eyes, my mouth;
My bones as ice,
Beneath frozen water.
You came
And planted your sun like a seed in me,
Pearl of light,
And my being became the song of snow-melt,
A river-burst of birdsong

At your touch my body is a garden
Of snowdrops;
This tender blooming
The greening of my soul.

Maria Ede-Weaving

7 Responses to “Brighid’s Thaw”

  1. Thank you, Maria! From what I’ve read of your writings, you need never worry about finding the right words. Beautiful, hopeful poem. Brighid’s blessings to you.

  2. Beautifully done, Maria. I most definitely think you have things well in hand! Love the poem — a lot.

  3. You put words to my feelings, Maria. You see, Husband of 34 yrs left for The Summerlands right before Samhuinn. Then, my house went through a “little” fire right before Yule. The Crone demanded more from me this winter than I ever realized I could give. I’m grateful to her but her lessons were hard the past two seasons and I felt her grip was still too strong for the message of Imbolc to have any impact on me this year. Then an important, artful physical gift was made available to me which I picked up Feb 3rd. This unexpected addition to my life instead of taking away was auspicious sign and this week, the first week of February, I honestly feel The Thaw, the loosening grip, even as I drag around my exhausted body. Blessed be the Crone and blessed be Brighid. Your words were another strengthening gift to me.

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