The Grackle, the Chimney, and the Vernal Equinox

grackleWhat a surprise we encountered today, the Vernal Equinox (also called the Spring Equinox or Alban Eilir), when we heard a noise in the wood stove’s chimney and eventually learned it was a stuck, though very much alive, bird. We did not want to leave it, nor try to force it to fly out by lighting a small fire (it would have flown out on its own, if it could have), so we finally closed and covered all the doors and windows in the living room except for two windows that we opened wide. We opened the unlit stove’s door, and out the bird flew into the living room and immediately out through the window to freedom and life.

The bird was a common grackle (though we were a bit divided in thinking it may have been a starling), and I have seen ones like him before outside on the bird feeder. Perhaps I will see this one again at the feeder, where I believe it will be much happier than inside.

I hope the change in the seasons brings life and prosperity to a world very much in need of renewal.

Winter Solstice Celebration

Friday night I attended a Winter Solstice celebration at the yoga studio at East West Living. I have limited familiarity with the Winter Solstice, having attended a number of the celebrations that Paul Winter and the Winter Consort presented over the years. While the one on Friday was entitled the Winter Solstice Sacred Circle, I was somewhat surprised by how it was celebrated. I understand the evergreens and candles and sand and water, but the use of crystals and a repeated mantra were not quite what comes to mind with earth-based spiritual celebrations. I attached the desc