Autumn, then winter, creep in and play games with our emotions here in the land of lakes and snow and purple royalty described by a symbol. They call it “indian summer”, which seems like in this day and age to be an incredibly un-PC phrase, though I can’t put my finger on exactly how it is aside from the appropriation of a false nationality to a people the US did it’s best to exterminate before the last plague to assault our shores. “Native American summer” just doesn’t have the same ring to it, so I suppose that if we want to be more politically correct, we should start calling it “false summer”, or the period before it a “false autumn”. Chances are, someone will say I’ve hurt the feelings of the seasons now with my insensitivity.
It’s all too complex, if you ask me.
With whatever way you elect to describe the season, it has gotten noticeably darker earlier in the day, and stays dark until later in the morn than just a few months hence. My thoughts reflect this, though I’ve always been considered a bit “spooky” or dark by most estimates, just not in terms of being fixated on violence and gore. I’m more of the kind that likes to hang out in graveyards when I was younger and I still kick myself in the ass for not taking more pictures of headstones in old Salem (of the witch trial fame) or of Melrose Abbey (near Edinburgh) when I was visiting either place. I’ve never been the type who grooved out to gross-out spooky, which explains why I was singularly unimpressed by a number of shock “goth” bands over the years or over-the-top gore-fest zombie movies.
Mine is undeniably more romantic spooky, with all kinds of unrequited, courtly love and troubadours and kissing and dancing and dervish in the sands. Vampires played a role in my youth, but Rice and Twilight largely ruined the genre for me as their efforts made vampires mainstream and kitschy. And cheerleader teenage angst.
And as days are eclipsed by nights and the pendulum swings to the proverbial Old Man, the dying god who’s reign begins at the the end of the month, so do my dreams, recollections and remembrances.
So, I conjure forth Scáthach/Sgàthach/Sgathaich, the Morrigan, the Nemhain, ravens, belly-dancing Roma in a caravan, erotic dervish, Death of the Endless, Grendel of the sceadugenga… Dark days call for dark romantic notions of blood and love and ecstasy, flame and fire and the gentle touch of an angel as she kisses you on the lips during your dying due to her beauty. And you don’t know or care to know her name…
These coming months are my months. I love the dark, the shadows and the chill; the smell of frost on the air mingled with the hint of rotting leaves.
Bundle up. Sit tight. Don’t hail the sluagh as they ride past, or your ride may be without end.