Early Sunday morning the moon will be full and if I am fortunate I will be able to watch her rise over Red Willow River… a river that I have fallen in love with… (I did)
I think of the Indigenous peoples who have marched in Washington in protest of a pipeline that if completed will pollute their drinking water. The political situation has never seemed more frightening than it is today.
Water is Life – simple and profound.
Every spring I honor the rising waters… and the importance of this element to all living beings. All sentient beings including humans are made of water.
In Maine where I come from, the dreaded white gaze of a March sun is reflected on heaps of snow. The noonday star hurts my eyes and brings on another round of depression because of the ongoing drought… every single year.
Here in Abiquiu I feel joy and I think about water because there is so little rainfall over all. Even desert plants need water to thrive. Each day I see that at the base of many plants there is new growth. I have already seen diminutive wildflowers in bloom. At the monastery big sage has 4 inches of new growth and the scent of this plant is intoxicating.
Two of these big sage plants sit outside my door listening to the river’s song.
Last weekend I saw an Indian man rub the sage onto his hands and body like a prayer. I repeat the gesture with big sage, giving thanks for the changing seasons.
This is the month to celebrate the rising of the waters. This is the month to pray for rain… Here in the southwest I don’t feel alone because the Pueblo peoples have ceremonies that call down the rain gods every year beginning with the Katchinas that arrive around the Winter Solstice, but remain invisible until First Light, when they appear as part of the purification process…In March the night dances dominate, and these are secret ceremonies that no doubt have everything to do with water. Next month the dam will open, and the acequias will be cleaned, so that the precious river water can flow into the ditches to irrigate the fields in this valley. How can I not be aware of how critical water is to all life…?
The Redwing blackbirds have just arrived. Robins are singing from the cottonwoods as talkative and clown-like magpies in black and white coats swoop down from those same branches. I don’t know if the redwing blackbirds will move on, but I hope not. I long to hear the songs of these black robed women with wings… The desert floor is covered with tiny bird prints – bird hieroglyphics – towhees, sparrows, juncos, nuthatches, woodpeckers, chickadees, cactus wrens, scurry around drinking water, swallowing seeds, pecking fat, seeking temporary safety and shelter in the prickly shrubs and vines. The shining rust colored feathers of the relentless redtails soar overhead hoping to spot an unwary avian relative. Yesterday a kestrel flew into the thickly branched tree (whose name I don’t know) scattering well hidden white crowned sparrows. Interesting technique!
I am happier here than I have ever been…I have a life with Nature, with her flowing river waters, her white moon, her wild birds and with her people – I am not alone – even the politics of this place seem to suit me.
- So let the desert and the moon and stars know than I feel gratitude flowing through me on this Watery Full Moon. I give thanks for my beloved dogs, for Lily B who is napping on his perch in our bedroom, for finding good and generous friends…I call out greetings to a white moon who rises in the east and brings the birds home…
- I ask to stay with the process I am in… to be present for myself.
Keep me honest with myself… to keep listening to the truth of my body…
I honor Grandmother Moon and her grandsons. remembering my own beloved grandmother, thanking her for loving me fiercely.
I bless each of us with water from Red Willow river and thank her for bringing us to this place.
Guardians, thank you for your presence here…