”The spirit is so closely linked to the body as a thing
that the body never ceases to be haunted.’
We had chosen five of the ancient and sacred sites of the local landscape as inspiration and setting for the story of the Feathered Seer. Unlike the Circles Beyond Time workshop, we could not take our Companions out into the landscape for the rituals. Instead we chose to bring the landscape symbolically within the sacred space created and hallowed by the intent of the Companions. Even so, the village once more saw strangely garbed figures wandering its fields in the pre-dawn light.
It is a measure of the trust we have in each other that we can ask the company to rise before dawn, donning robes and cloaks, to walk though the village streets to the hillside, there to enact whatever ritual we have devised with which to continue the story of the weekend and greet the rising of the sun. These early gatherings are always optional, but this year, we were touched to see that every single participant had joined us on the dew-drenched hillside. Even my son.
Nick had come along to the workshop to observe, wishing to know more of what it is that I am so passionate about and experience the annual workshop that occupies my sewing machine, thoughts and ingenuity for months every year. The electric wheelchair is too bulky for the car, so he had travelled up by train to Derbyshire. On the day of his arrival, he had parked his wheelchair at the side of the road and climbed the stile with us, just to see if he could, standing with us in the field as we paced out the site for the following day. Now he stood within the semicircle of Companions, supported by a pair of strong shoulders. When the time came to step forward, he did so, steadied by those same shoulders. Even in ‘ritual mode’, maternal pride warmed the morning.
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Nick, Steve and Stuart