From dusk on Halloween to dusk on November 1st, the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, pronounced 'sow-in" or "saw-win" was celebrated.
During Samhain, which Halloween is derived from, it was believed that the veil between the dead and living is thinner, a liminal time to see and communicate with faeries, demons and ghosts and to honor the dead.
This was the last of the 3 harvests, almost 1/2 way between the Autumn Equinox and the Winter Solstice and the beginning of winter, a time of releasing the old and the beginning of the new.
Here, in the high country, Halloween can be counted on to be a snowy day and snow came, right on schedule. The trees are bare of leaves, the grasses are receding and the days are noticeably shorter. I've been splitting and stacking wood for the studio. True to Samhain lore, the transition into winter has begun. I made tea for the faeries and wrote a list of things that I appreciate at this time of year, to get into the shift, not always easy for we lovers of long days and victims of winter cabin fever.
-The sounds of wind and water in the river.
-Cloud formations, at any time of day.
-Picking and eating rose hips.
- The undulating patterns, in windblown snow.
- The smell of leaves, half buried in the snow.
-The return of eagles.
- My horse's growing winter coat, which looks like black velvet.
-Splitting firewood & the smell of burning pine.
-Riding in the hay meadows.
-Watching the dogs run after a fox, which they rarely see & can never catch.
-Seeing deer & elk.
- Watching magpies sitting on horses' backs.
- Eating carrots dug from the garden.
-The possibility of seeing faeries, elves or gnomes, during Samhain.