Romjul and intercalation

The business of calculating years and dates is complicated, since calendars need to reconcile solar and lunar cycles. Different calendrical systems use different methods of reconciling the two cycles, inserting a day (February 29th in the Gregorian calendar), a week, or even a month in some calendars. This practice is called intercalation. It has also been suggested that the time between Yule and New Year is an intercalation.

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Anarchic Yule

Yule is a distinct festival, often overshadowed by its younger sibling, Christmas. If you’re a Pagan or have Pagan leanings, the chances are that everything you love about Christmas is actually because it’s a Yule thing. If you love the tree, the holly, the greenery being brought into the house, the feasting, and the reciprocity of thoughtful gift giving (as opposed to obligatory gift giving dictated by social norms), then you love Yule. Yule is not “Christmas with the serial numbers filed off”, and Christmas isn’t “Yule with added Baby Jesus”, Yule is far more exciting and wild and numinous than that.

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“into the twilight woods”

Twilight. Betwixt. Liminal.
The setting sun
Making an archway
Through the trees
A window to infinity.

Things half-seen
In the mazy places.
Not sure where this path goes.
Maybe through, or within.
Some hollow place.

The half-light transforms
Known into unknown.
The woods drift between.
Trees asleep,
Nocturnal animals stirring.

Shadows gather.
Time stretches out,
Ready to pounce.
One star. Night’s eye.
Colours drain away.

Everything waits
For moonrise,
To flood the woods
With silver.

Yvonne Aburrow
8:15 am, 29 April 2022


Inspired by the phrase “into the twilight woods” in Iowa City: Early April by ROBERT HASS


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“three large rabbit-breaths of air”

See the world as a rabbit sees it.
Wide angle view,
Not straight ahead
As a predator sees,
But sidelong, as prey animals see.

Long shadows,
Tall grass.
Noting every hiding place.
Ready to bolt
At the first sign
Of predators.
Each breath taken
Short and shallow.
Darting from shelter
To shelter.
Grass here,
Lettuce there.
Sun is warm,
Earth is kind.

Yvonne Aburrow
7:50 am, 28 April 2022

Inspired by the phrase “three large rabbit-breaths of air” in the poem My Weather by Jane Hirshfield


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submerged peaks

Just out of the corner
Of your conscious mind
Something lurks in the shadows:
A half forgotten memory
Surfacing from below.
A shark or a whale
Sliding through dark water.
The mountain of a lost continent,
Land of make-believe
And childhood imaginings,
Or some drowned feeling
Covered in seaweed.
Not quite reachable,
Not quite visible,
But it leaves a trace
As it heaves through
The dark oily water.

Yvonne Aburrow (8:28 am, 21 April 2022)

Inspired by the phrase “submerged peaks” in Great Ships
by ADAM ZAGAJEWSKI
translated by CLARE CAVANAGH

El Bajón is an underwater mountain near the fishing village of La Restinga in El Hierro. Photo by Lukas Spieker.

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Missing Witches

I was on the Missing Witches podcast recently. It’s a new and original format for a podcast: more like a structured group chat, ably facilitated by the lovely hosts.

Among other things, we discussed the subject of the book I’m currently writing, Changing Paths, which is about changing from one spiritual path to another. I was also really pleased with the circle opening that I did for this episode.

You can catch the episode at Missing Witches.


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