This month we have seen, in Scotland at least, every weather system – from snow to sideways sleet, howling gales to April showers, hazy summer shimmer and sunsets tinged with dark, Icelandic Ash. Convinced that it is spring, I took my trusty piece of sackcloth up our own extinct volcano, and celebrated something simple: freedom.
Funny, how they say the grass is always greener on the other side. When I got there I found it was not so much, greener nor less green, but simply so: green.
The poem for April mixes the Lakota Sioux name for the full moon with an Iroquois Creation story. The three sisters of the Iroquois, Corn, Beans and Squash are the three spirits that sustain life. Other myths speak of six sisters; either way, the doll created from corn husks was, initially, a symbol of celebrating the gift of sustenance.
Moon Phases, April 2010
Last Quarter – April 6, 09:37
New Moon – April 14, 12:29
First Quarter – April 21, 18:20
Full Moon – April 28, 12:18
APRIL: Moon of Grass Appearing
Over hill and dale, in park and pale,
Fairies dibble-dabble in the dam, with
Elfin mischief and lively Spirit-dances,
fording fen and brook and beck and burn;
High upon peak and pike, and under vale,
Trolls in crag and crevice hide beneath bridges
with Goblin menace and Impish glances.
These flights of fancy heralding fortune are
Mini-magicians, ushering joy and delight
to uncles, aunties, siblings, nephews, nieces;
placing mysterious gems in cowslips' ears,
replacing lost teeth with ten pence pieces,
displacing the soot with three gold purses -
nocturnal assistants, too reticent to appear
diurnal; sweet as dewfall, innocent as grass.
Other folk interpolated colours:
summoning seed from six beautiful sisters:
The apoplectic rage of shame-faced red;
panic yellow-faced fear and melancholy blue,
which faces up to pity, nostalgia and regret;
Black, the flipside, face untouched by sun, yet
flowering from the sisters' enigmatic psyche;
Finally, the dappled sun illuminates the flowers
in speckled beauty, paints the pearl-white drops,
defaces the envy of grass as it appeared
naïvely green beneath the April sky at night.