The Bones of the Matter

Well I seem to be managing about 1 blog post a year – possibly slightly less. Lol. Not exactly setting the world on fire am I. I think my last post had me hoofing off to South America, with a backpack full of braves, and a flask filled with sangria, to frisk with llamas and wear a brightly coloured poncho. Just as well lockdown landed me back into my senses, cos I’m telling you, that particular adventure would’ve ended badly, in ways outlined in the post.

How was lockdown for y’all? Now that we’ve had a couple of years to reflect and get our heads around life lived through zoom…which brings its own special kind of madness. I got unnaturally fixated on backgrounds – my own and other peoples, you know? My world shrunk to my corner of the kitchen where the light didn’t make me look about 150 years old. Oh yes siree, I can do vanity. Anyway, that was then and this is now. And baby how the world has changed – where did all the fun go? Where did the hope slink off to hey? Is anyone out there having a remotely good time?

A few years ago I probably would’ve kept a gratitude diary or something, to mark the small joys of a day. But blimey, I’d be scraping the barrel now. Its a mixture of post menopause, pissed-offness about everything being so ridiculously expensive now, and the fact that small joys for me these days seems confined to 70% dark chocolate with a Bailey’s shot and an episode of Vikings Valhalla on Netflix. I have strayed far from the path of goodness my friends, and it’s going to take more than a gratitude journal to call me back into the land of Insta-ready loveliness.

Right then, get a grip. Where are we going with this annual blog post? Actually, I am wrong to diss Instagram, because I do blog my life in photos on there regularly, with much enthusiasm and joy of setting my life to music. There’s a small pleasure right there. I’ve always loved that bit in films where they do a montage set to a great soundtrack – condensing all the action into 30 seconds of Missy Elliot or something fabulous. And why not. I can lose whole hours in choosing the perfect track to go with my photos, hop on over and let me hook you in honey, lose some hours with me.

Meanwhile, ok. So, what has been going on in my world. Not llamas. But lots of bones, bone totems and other witchy doings. Not only do I skid to a halt when I see a poor creature by the roadside – foxes and badgers and deer mainly – but I also now have a small army of people always on the lookout for bone treasure as they go about their days. In my cache I have hare bones, falcon bones, foxes and badgers and deer, horse bones, and seal bones. And a box of unidentified bones. They carry the essence and the story of a life lived. They are what is left, after we leave. And they are beautiful to me. Making them into totems is something I fell into a few years ago, hopping on to my best friend’s coattails because it’s what she did. Together we’ve made dozens and dozens of these ritual pieces for women. I am making hand felted drum beaters out of horse bones right now and I know they will find the right woman to land with. Women and drums, that is also woven in to my story of this life that I live and love.

It’s been a hard start to the year. My beloved witches cat Thorn is old and nearing his final chapter. And I’m tending elderly people in my day job, being present with their intense vulnerabilities. So i’ve been thinking about endings, and how to sit with the process of dying, the ultimate letting go; trusting that we travel into unseen realms and dimensions for an even greater adventure that waits for us. And those of us who are left behind, watching this process, a bit helpless and alone in a grief journey that can be heartbreakingly awful. What do we do with all of that? Maybe my bone totem making is partly a response to making sense of death, that we hide away, tidy up, because its too scary and final to hold through our lived days.

So this is me in the last few weeks of winter, trying to not plan the hell out of what comes next, because I really don’t know. Trying to find some peace with the reality of how things are, knowing that a lot of people are out there, living difficult days too. Sending you all the biggest squeezy hug, isn’t that what we all really need? As well as a small lottery win and temperatures to rise into double figures. I wish it all for you, I really do my loves. And in the meantime, if you find bones, get on the blower to me, ’cause I’m your girl for that…happy to take commissions, do bone swaps, and pop things in my bone composter. Yes, its really a thing in my world. I am that weird….


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