Merry we meet - Merry we meet - Merry we meet
A Tale of the Woods
By Bran th' Blessed
Once I went
looking for the oldest creature in the wood. I asked my father, the woodsman,
"Are you the oldest person in the wood?"
no," he said, "There are beings much older than myself in these woods.
Yes..." and he wrinkled his brow as he mulled the question over. Then he
looked at me waiting for his answer. "Ah, yes, the old mother elk who lives
in the Holly grove, for example. Why, she must be almost 80 years old, much
older than most of her kind," and he nodded his head in affirmation of his
So I went,
of course, to ask the old mother elk if she were the oldest person in the wood.
"Indeed," said she, "I am older than any other of my kind, and
some days I know I must feel every year of my long life. But I am not nearly the
oldest one in these woods. Oh no, my dear. My grandmother told me long ago that
the first being she befriended in these woods was an ancient bed of moss that
had grown upon a fallen tree in the shadowy ash thicket at the center of the
wood. I have seen that moss bed myself. It still flourishes in the heart of the
the old mother elk for her information and wished her happiness in all her
remaining years. Then I journeyed to the old ash thicket at the heart of the
woods where I found the old bed of moss on the rotted remains of the old fallen
tree. "Tell me, old one, if you will, are you the oldest creature in these
woods?" I waited as patiently as I could for the moss to respond, and after
a long silence, a chorus of small voices answered me.
have been here a long, long time as it is recorded in our lore. We have rested
long years upon this fallen tree and indeed we clung to its side from the days
it first peeked its shallow tendrils above the ground. And you know, it was one
of the first trees in the wood, an ancient boughard, grey and grizzled when he
fell." And the voices repeated it with venerable grief in their tone,
"Grey and grizzled when he fell."
to offer them condolences for their loss, but I could not quite find the right
words. As I paused awkwardly, the voices continued. "But you know, there
are older ones in our lore. It was told in the lore of the trees themselves that
there was one who was here before them, before this sacred land became the wood
it is today you see. Perhaps that old one remains today in her home north of the
lake to the west.
and see," they urged me. "And when you have found her or not, return
and tell us so that we may add this tale to our lore."
shall I surely do," I affirmed to them, to the ancient colony of the moss.
And turning toward the west I walked to the lake some half a league beyond the
thicket I had entered from the east of south. When I reached the lake I circled
the long way, deocil, to the north banks, chanting to myself as I strode lightly
through the grasses and the reeds. "Grant, Mother Goddess, that I may have
eyes to see and wisdom to know."
were shorn with dirt and grasses, and a vine entangled bush embraced her from
behind, but the windworn face of the ancient boulder remained resolute against
time and age. There was no doubt that this stone was the embodiment of the old
one of whom the ancient lore of the trees had alluded. I knelt before the stone
and lowered my head in homage.
be you, ancient one, of the Earth who gave you birth and the sky that shelters
you from above." She made no sound, but I felt her gaze settle upon me.
"I have set myself upon a quest, venerable grandmother, to find the oldest
being in these woods, and I know that surely you must be that oldest of old ones
who stood here before anything but the Earth herself that now stands in these
the Earth," she said in a voice that was a whisper echoing from a cavern,
"are one. So I am the mother of all that lives in these woods as I am the
mother of all else that flourishes between the hidden Earth and the clear and
thy child, great Goddess," I declared as we all may, "flesh of thy
flesh and blood of thy blood."
tell me why you seek the oldest one in these woods," she spoke with an
understanding that there was more to my quest. "What would you gain from
this old scarred stone that you could not elsewhere gain?"
you tell me, O face of the Goddess, where there is one than which no elder can
be known?" It was the question I had cultivated so carefully and cherished
as a secret until I thought I had found one who might answer it.
silent, but I felt the serenity of her silence. She spoke. "Look to the sky
above you, to the stars of the firmament, many of whom are older than myself and
the sun and moon and planets. Their very lights shine upon us from ages long
forgotten. Before I could become the mother of all life, some stars lived whose
lights no longer shine, but in their lives and in their deaths they labored to
bring forth the very fabric of my being. I am star stuff, my child, and
therefore you too are made of star stuff.
here is another secret. The light is born of darkness. No star could be born
except the clouds of darkness had gathered into swirling spheres that slowly
shrank and began to glow with the birth of elemental fire. Remember this secret
that I tell you. *The Sun is but a mortal light surrounded by immortal Night.*
For all stars are born from the clouds of darkness that are the oldest beings in
all the very sky except for Night herself, who is not born and cannot die.
"Look, child, to the darkness of the night. She was there before the emptiness of space itself, before the dawn of time she was and shall remain when time is done. We call her night because the light cannot touch upon her, but she is the mother of light and the very stars from which it shines. Call her not by what she seems, but by what she is. Call her Spirit, the ageless and endless mother of the ten thousand worlds."
and shared with kind permission from the author Bran th’ Blessed
February 2013 ©
Bran th' Blessed
All rights reserved.
Best Wishes and Blessed Be
Site Contents - Links to all Pages
A Universal Message:
Let there be peace in the world - Where have all the flowers gone?
Wicca & Witchcraft
The Wiccan Rede / Charge of the Goddess / Charge of the God / The Three-Fold Law (includes The Law of Power and The Four Powers of the Magus) / The Witches Chant / The Witches Creed / Descent of the Goddess / Drawing Down the Moon / The Great Rite Invocation / Invocation of the Horned God / The 13 Principles of Wiccan Belief / The Witches Rede of Chivalry / A Pledge to Pagan Spirituality
Traditions Part 1 - Alexandrian Wicca / Aquarian Tabernacle Church (ATC) / Ár Ndraíocht Féin (ADF) / Blue Star Wicca / British Traditional (Druidic Witchcraft) / Celtic Wicca / Ceremonial Magic / Chaos Magic / Church and School of Wicca / Circle Sanctuary / Covenant of the Goddess (COG) / Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans (CUUPS) / Cyber Wicca / Dianic Wicca / Eclectic Wicca / Feri Wicca /
Traditions Part 2 - Gardnerian Wicca / Georgian Tradition / Henge of Keltria / Hereditary Witchcraft / Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (H.O.G.D.) / Kitchen Witch (Hedge Witch) / Minoan Brotherhood and Minoan Sisterhood Tradition / Nordic Paganism / Pagan Federation / Pectic-Wita / Seax-Wica / Shamanism / Solitary / Strega / Sylvan Tradition / Vodoun or Voodoo / Witches League of Public Awareness (WLPA) /
Other things of interest:
Gods and Goddesses (Greek Mythology) / Esbats & Full Moons / Links to Personal Friends & Resources / Wicca/Witchcraft Resources / What's a spell? / Circle Casting and Sacred Space / Pentagram - Pentacle / Marks of a Witch / The Witches Power / The Witches Hat / An esoteric guide to visiting London / Satanism / Pow-wow / The Unitarian Universalist Association / Numerology: Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / A history of the Malleus Maleficarum: includes: Pope Innocent VIII / The papal Bull / The Malleus Maleficarum / An extract from the Malleus Maleficarum / The letter of approbation / Johann Nider’s Formicarius / Jacob Sprenger / Heinrich Kramer / Stefano Infessura / Montague Summers / The Waldenses / The Albigenses / The Hussites / The Native American Sun Dance / Shielding (Occult and Psychic Protection) /
Sabbats and Festivals:
The Sabbats in History and Mythology / Samhain (October 31st) / Yule (December 21st) / Imbolc (February 2nd) / Ostara (March 21st) / Beltane (April 30th) / Litha (June 21st) / Lammas/Lughnasadh (August 1st) / Mabon (September 21st)
Rituals contributed by Crone:
Animals in Witchcraft (The Witches Familiar) / Antelope / Bats / Crow / Fox / Frog and Toads / Goat / Honeybee / Kangaroo / Lion / Owl / Phoenix / Rabbits and Hares / Raven / Robin Redbreast / Sheep / Spider / Squirrel / Swans / Wild Boar / Wolf / Serpent / Pig / Stag / Horse / Mouse / Cat
In Worship of Trees - Myths, Lore and the Celtic Tree Calendar. For descriptions and correspondences of the thirteen sacred trees of Wicca/Witchcraft see the following: Birch / Rowan / Ash / Alder / Willow / Hawthorn / Oak / Holly / Hazel / Vine / Ivy / Reed / Elder
Rocks and Stones:
Stones - History, Myths and Lore
Articles contributed by Patricia Jean Martin:
Apophyllite / Amber / Amethyst / Aquamarine / Aragonite / Aventurine / Black Tourmaline / Bloodstone / Calcite / Carnelian / Celestite / Citrine / Chrysanthemum Stone / Diamond / Emerald / Fluorite / Garnet / Hematite / Herkimer Diamond / Labradorite / Lapis Lazuli / Malachite / Moonstone / Obsidian / Opal / Pyrite / Quartz (Rock Crystal) / Rose Quartz / Ruby / Selenite / Seraphinite / Silver and Gold / Smoky Quartz / Sodalite / Sunstone / Thunderegg / Tree Agate / Zebra Marble
Wisdom and Inspiration:
Articles and Stories about Witchcraft:
Murdered by Witchcraft / The Fairy Witch of Clonmel / A Battleship, U-boat, and a Witch / The Troll-Tear (A story for Children) / Goody Hawkins - The Wise Goodwife / The Story of Jack-O-Lantern / The Murder of the Hammersmith Ghost / Josephine Gray (The Infamous Black Widow) / The Two Brothers - Light and Dark
Old Masters of Academia:
(Ancient, Past and Present)
(Departed Pagan Pioneers, Founders, Elders and Others)
Abramelin the Mage / Agrippa / Aidan A Kelly / Albertus Magnus - “Albert the Great” / Aleister Crowley - “The Great Beast” / Alex Sanders - “King of the Witches” / Alison Harlow / Amber K / Anna Franklin / Anodea Judith / Anton Szandor LaVey / Arnold Crowther / Arthur Edward Waite / Austin Osman Spare / Biddy Early / Bridget Cleary - The Fairy Witch of Clonmel / Carl " Llewellyn" Weschcke / Cecil Hugh Williamson / Charles Godfrey Leland / Charles Walton / Christina Oakley Harrington / Damh the Bard - "Dave Smith" / Dion Fortune / Dolores Aschroft-Nowicki / Doreen Valiente / Dorothy Morrison / Dr. John Dee & Edward Kelly / Dr. Leo Louis Martello / Edward Fitch / Eleanor Ray Bone - “Matriarch of British Witchcraft” / Eliphas Levi / Ernest Thompson Seton / Ernest Westlake / Fiona Horne / Friedrich von Spee / Francis Barrett / Gavin and Yvonne Frost and the School and Church of Wicca / Gerald B. Gardner - The father of contemporary Witchcraft / Gwydion Pendderwen / Hans Holzer / Helen Duncan / Herman Slater - Horrible Herman / Isaac Bonewits / Israel Regardie / James "Cunning" Murrell - The Master of Witches / Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone / Jessie Wicker Bell - “Lady Sheba” / Johannes Junius - "The Burgomaster of Bamberg" / John Belham-Payne / John George Hohman - "Pow-wow" / John Gerard / John Gordon Hargrave and the Kibbo Kith Kindred / John Michael Greer / John Score / Joseph John Campbell / Karl von Eckartshausen / Laurie Cabot - "the Official Witch of Salem" / Lewis Spence / Margaret Alice Murray / Margot Adler / Marie Laveau - " the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans" / Marion Weinstein / Matthew Hopkins - “The Witch-Finder General” / Max Ehrmann and the "Desiderata" / Monique Wilson / Montague Summers / Nicholas Culpeper / Nicholas Remy / M. R. Sellars / Mrs. Maud Grieve - "A Modern Herbal" / Oberon Zell-Ravenheart and Morning Glory / Old Dorothy Clutterbuck / Old George Pickingill / Paddy Slade / Pamela Colman-Smith / Paracelsus / Patricia Crowther / Patricia Monaghan / Patricia “Trish” Telesco / Philip Heselton / Raymond Buckland / Reginald Scot / Robert Cochrane / Robert ‘von Ranke’ Graves and the "The White Goddess" / Rosaleen Norton - “The Witch of Kings Cross” / Ross Nichols and the " Order of Bards, Ovates & Druids" (OBOD) / Rudolf Steiner / Sabrina Underwood - "The Ink Witch" / Scott Cunningham / Selena Fox - founder of "Circle Sanctuary" / Silver Ravenwolf / Sir Francis Dashwood / Sir James George Frazer and the " The Golden Bough" / S.L. MacGregor Mathers and the “Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn” / Starhawk / Stewart Farrar / Sybil Leek / Ted Andrews / The Mather Family - (includes: Richard Mather, Increase Mather and Cotton Mather ) / Thomas Ady / T. Thorn Coyle / Vera Chapman / Victor & Cora Anderson and the " Feri Tradition" / Vivianne Crowley / Walter Brown Gibson / William Butler Yeats / Zsuzsanna Budapest /
Many of the above biographies are briefs and far from complete. If you know about any of these individuals and can help with additional information, please contact me privately at my email address below. Many thanks for reading :-)
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