Christmas Grouse

I left seed for you.

A pomegranate too.

Would you come

Christmas day?

The veil was thin

last night.

This morning

 Madonna’ s 

Feathered Body


When you ran across

the snow

I remembered

the song

from long ago…

Partridge in a Pear Tree.

Twelve days

begun in earnest conversation

bridging difference

in Love.

Ever widening circles…

Soul, spirit and body 

  entwine underground,

 weaving many

 into One.

Mother Root

Father Root.

And then,

 You were Three!

Postscript: I have Ruffed grouse who live around the house. Sometimes a week goes by and I don’t see one, and I fear they have left me, but lately I have been flushing them in the woods, or have followed three towed hieroglyphics in the snow. Occasionally I have a momentary glimpse. Just to know they are here is enough. 

Last fall I found a dead grouse on the road, held him tenderly, cut mole brown and black striped tail feathers and his shining henna ruff into a fan, knowing the ‘crown’ would grace my Norfolk pine when November came around…

Yesterday late in the afternoon I scattered some seed around, cut up a pomegranate in the hopes that the partridge would find the food. Lily, my dove, told me the partridge would come.

An evening call from my cousin brightened the night after I had lit the Madonna’s candles, and set intentions for widening visions.

We two, so different are so alike! Such a paradox. Oh the Italian is running strong. Family healing is afoot. Devout Catholic and Nature Mystic meet as more than close relatives – almost brother and sister now – each is an authentic expression of the divine thread. Today that thread manifests for me as not just one partridge but three walking under evergreen cover just outside my door. The most I have ever seen! A trinity of partridge?

Why is the partridge such a symbolic earthly – spirit presence? What comes to mind is that partridge/grouse are heavy bodied; they fly low through the trees and spend much of their time foraging on the ground. They are embodied birds – in close relationship with the earth – Unlike the soaring eagle for example, these birds literally hug the earth with feathered grace. Becoming a meal for men who hunt, these wild birds are prey animals not predators. It is worth mentioning that we honor avian predators as a culture. We don’t hunt the predatory birds; we hunt the prey.

 I think the song ‘partridge in a pear tree’ is trying to tell us story of how important it is to be attached to both spirit and body in a non – predatory way… I see the bird as embodied spirit, the tree is Life.

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