Yesterday I went on drive-about with my Mum & Sister down Memory Lane; visiting places, spaces & Spirits, from our past. It was a Wyrd time, existing both now and then; for when we revisit places that shape us, we revisit the self we use to be. As a Druid, I am a firm believer that every place has Spirit or Essence; a Genius Loci, that makes it what it is, and it in turn shapes us.
Genius Loci-protective Spirit of place, the essence or Spirit of Place
I grew up in Whitefield, NH; a town I always felt belonged in the story ‘the Outsiders’, or in an episode of ‘Twilight Zone’; where the people exist in a time-warp bubble, stuck on the wrong side of the tracks in the 1950’s. In a romantic sense; it was a place where it felt good to be a little bit naughty. A place where rules were meant to be bent, and the people had seen a thing or two. Yet it retained a strange wholesomeness; in the fact that everybody knew everybody & as a general rule it was pretty safe. Not to mention there were certainly enough colorful Spirits both living & dead to make it quite interesting.
Revisiting ‘home’ happens every now and then for me. I end up working in the area, and give myself enough time to do a bit of reminiscing & back road rambling. But yesterday was different; for I returned with my Mum & my sister Sandy, turning the old memory files of the mine up to ‘elevensies’… as we were remembering together. We hadn’t been there together in many years, and hadn’t lived there since I was 15.
I do love the adventure of revisiting though, as I am sentimental by nature. I love things that hold essence, spirit and being. I love old letters, and the way scent can transport me back to precise moments in time; when things use to be. I love how visiting the land of my Grammy Brown, can make me 4 years old sitting @ her kitchen table; eating mayonaise toast, drinking coffee milk and playing Psychic games. I love how the streets of a place I use to walk, can whisper stories of my adventures there & I love how the light shining on a pool of water can remind me of all the summers I swam in the water there. I sometimes wish I could slip through the seams of time, and spend just another hour, another day, listening to the sound of my Grandmother rocking away, telling stories of our Dead. Or that I could be a little girl again, learning how to swim, on my fathers back in the rivers of Bretton Woods.
As part of our adventure in the North Woods, we had a picnic planned with my Father’s family (in Spirit), in the Whitefield graveyard. Driving there I couldn’t help but think about all the time I spent in graveyards as a kid. I like graveyards, in fact I would go as far as to say ” I love graveyards”. I don’t spend much time there as an adult, as I now, tend to speak to the Dead from the comfort of living rooms and kitchens. But, I do love the way stepping into a graveyard, immediately connects you to the sacred. And how as a Medium, it becomes like a park filled with fascinating stories and beautiful souls.
Symbolically gravestones are a marker or dedication to the those that have crossed into Spirit. They are intended as connecting points, places to remember and communicate with those we love in Spirit.
When we arrived at the graveyard, I was greeted by the voice of a Spirit other then my Grandmothers. It had been so long since I had been there, that I forgot that this particular graveyard was also the resting place of another who was dear to me…a friend who will ever, have a place in my heart. So after a promise to my grandparents that I would return in time for the picnic, I made my way over to my friend Mike’s…to sit and visit for awhile.
Just like the Spirit of Place helps shape you, so do the people who walk the path with you. It doesn’t matter how long we share the road, what matters is the adventures and conversations along the way. Some people will simply have a stronger effect on our life then others, and some people will effect all who have the pleasure of knowing them; my friend Mike was one of those people, and he died way too young.
Sitting with my own Dead yesterday; my family & friends, visiting them in the traditional way, people visit their Dead. I felt very connected to the stories of my clients. I felt the the loss, and the melancholy that graveyards radiate. I felt the connection & loneliness of now, and the celebration of then. And I was thankful…thankful that among those feelings, I also heard the voices and felt the emotions of my Beloved Dead. I felt grateful for the gifts that connect me with Spirit so deeply, and the traditions I was raised in; that help me honor & celebrate the Dead. I found myself thankful; for the solace of graveyards & the Geni Loci/Spirits of Place that reside there. Thankful for the space to connect, mourn and celebrate those that we have loved and lost.
I understand, that to some feasting in the graveyard may seem strange. But, Spirits love to talk about their favorite foods, libations and smoke… so I say, let us celebrate together. If you have never tried it, I highly recommend it. Pack a picnic, a candy bar, or your favorite tunes & head up to the graveyard to spend some quality time with your Dead. They will appreciate it, and so will you. The more often you do it, the easier it is to feel them there.
Well I hope you enjoyed the read Folks, I know I have been a bit quiet this summer…but truth be told, I have been hanging out with the Nature Spirits all summer, frolicking in the green spaces and dancing under the moon. Not to worry, my Awen (spirit of creativity) is awake and words are coming back to me…more to come, indeed!