A seasonal swap for Autumn has connected on a soul and creative level which is always a source of great wonder and joy.
Today there can be no doubt that here in the sub-tropics, where we seem to have ongoing summer for at least three quarters of the year, there is a distinct change of season. Autumn is claiming Her place and heralding perhaps a “real” winter to follow.
Outside the sky is grey. Blasts of wind bring sheets of rain. The rain creates huge misty curtains pierced by leaves and twigs that are are swirling in the air currents. It even feels chilly. Being a southerner used to four seasons this feels so right and normal.
Autumn is a time abundance and harvest; a time for reflection, of falling leaves, glorious colours and pumpkin soup. For me with it comes the urge to bake and make soup and knit. John Keats has so immortally and beautifully described the season as a time of “mists and mellow fruitfulness”. Yet Autumn also carries a message of warning to prepare for the destructive forces that can come with winter.
This is a time to stop and consider what it is that we need to reap from the the year that has passed. What we can use to create and to understand better our journey and our connection with ourselves, others and the planet. What it is we need to let go and to forgive and what we need to acknowledge and to express our gratitude.
Autumn is a wondrous time with an abundance of colours that enchant but as the season progresses the leaves fall becoming brown and brittle, decay and enrich the soil. We also need to turn within to enrich our souls and understanding. Who better to indicate this seeking of wisdom than the owl, who sat on Athena’s shoulder and in many cultures symbolises wisdom,inner knowing, power and death.
Death is such a huge, and for many, a frightening concept. The focus in our society tends to be on its finality regarding it as an ending, whereas death can also be a new beginning and opportunity for growth. In our living we experience many deaths- be they stages of development, moving to different locations, relationship breakdowns perhaps business or career failures or changes.
In the little felt naturescape the owl sits on a stump- a “dead” tree. Look closely at a dead tree and there really is an abundance of life forms; for instance insects, various fungi and vines. Scattered below it and in the ground are its seeds. The fallen leaves form a carpet that warms and nourishes the earth so after the chill of winter when Spring arrives this scene will be one of life, abundant growth and renewal. The owl contemplates and knows this- too often we superior humans forget and give in to feelings of loss and despair. We forget there is a cycle, ancient, perpetual and ever evolving.
So these were the symbols chosen for Autumn; the owl, the pumpkin, a seed baby, (a needlfelt peg style doll) and of course coloured leaves.
It was such a wonder to have connected with my Autumn partner, who specialises in peg dolls ( as mine was made well before the reveal). We seemed to cater to each others passions as Peggy from http://webloomhere.blogspot.com also made an owl and an Autumn sprite. Participating in this seasonal swap has been such a rewarding experience and highly recommended. http://southernseasonexchange.blogspot.com/2011/03/summertime-swap-2010.html
Peggy posted her package early and ironically it is still to arrive so the wonder of autumn will have that added anticipation and delight of a surprise to come. The Southern Swap however can be revealed as they have reached their destination.