On a Warm Summer Day (Poem, Images, Thoughts)

rose, garden, poem, cohanmagazine.blogspot.com

I've been enjoying exploring the ancient beliefs of Latvia, where my mother's family is from.  Being late to Christianise, the Baltics retained more of the traditional beliefs and practises surrounding nature Spirits and Deities, and have a vast store of representations for every natural phenomenon. I don't literally believe in a pantheon of goddesses, gods and spirits in human form running around shaping the world around us, *but* I find it both interesting and useful in some ways to personify anything and everything we see and experience. 


peony, campanula, bellflower,  cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Peony in a Sea of Campanula
Modern Western culture has been far to prone to view humanity as completely separate from, and worse yet, superior to, the rest of existence (Sadly no better in other modern societies that have placed value on economic growth for its own sake). We see the fruits of this as people exploit the planet's riches for their own profit at the expense of species, habitats and even global natural systems such as the water cycle and climate.


peony, summer day,  cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Peony on a July Afternoon
One way to counter that alienation that makes us feel as though all life and substance are commodities to be used and discarded is the animist view that all things and all beings have Spirit, Soul, value, and are our partners in Being, not our property. Would you tear apart a mountain for a few shiny rocks if you understood that that every tree, flower, insect and animal on it, the soil and stones and water, were all expressions of cosmic energy just like you? That you have a right to use what you need, respectfully and reverently, but not to squander and hoard?


Halenia deflexa, spurred gentian, green gentian,  cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Halenia deflexa, Spurred or Green Gentian on a July Afternoon
Try it as an exercise-- think that every thing you see and touch- every plant, every bird, every gust of wind or rain shower, every patch of wet soil, tree stump, boulder, every weed filled empty lot or tree growing from a crack in the pavement has a personality, a Spirit, a guiding energy or deity. Think that you live in this swirling chaotic spin of forces and counterforces, not good or evil but all part of the flow and transmutation and endless cycling of energy.. See how you feel at the end of a day or even an hour or a few minutes of this exercise-- maybe you will feel just a little more connected, a little more in awe, a little more committed to stewardship over consumption.. a little more reverent....


Halenia deflexa, spurred gentian, green gentian,  cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Halenia deflexa, Spurred or Green Gentian on a July Afternoon
Here's a poem I wrote in this mood, on a warm, rich, summer afternoon, full of life and energetic with possibility....
On a warm summer day with cooler air to come,
Gausu Mate, Mother of Slowness and Laziness, holds temporary sway
while her siblings jostle carelessly for supremacy.
Moist heavy air rises from soil and  transpires from leaves,
carrying scents of wild rose, swathes of clover and a thousand other flowers 
in garden, lawn and thickets and meadows all around.
Great Mother herself, Mara, urges the small ones, shimmying bees and droning flies, 
to hasten their work in the blossoms while Saule yet shines down.
Lapu Mate, Leaf Mother, leads the swirling chatter of anxious poplars and murmurs of staid spruce
in the breeze and gust of passing clouds, 
Lietus Mate, Rain Mother, dances high above, weaving in and out of storms drifting from the foothills 

and Thunder Brother, Perkuns, rumbles uncommittedly in the patchwork sky.


wild rose, rosa acicularis, raindrops, summer, cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Wild Rose after Summer Afternoon Rain

clover, poplar suckers, afternoon, cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Clover in Late Afternoon

rose, clover, stormy afternoon, cohanmagazine.blogspot.com
Rose and Clover as Storm Clouds Darken the Afternoon

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