Harvest moon- A month ago the moon looked different in the sky. It was big, orange and warm. The moon always morphs by the end of summer. By mid-August the moon has altered so much that people often stop and stare, “wow! look at that!.” It’s as if the earth’s satellite has absorbed the glow of summer’s warmth, the gold from the fields and then, casts it’s rich aura over the land- readying it for the gathering of crops, preparing it for the dying off of summer’s abundant flora and bracing it for winter’s great sleep.
Lughnasadh was the ancient sabbat celebrating the beginning harvest and typically observed in the beginning of August. It was a very important time because if you had a bad harvest, you starved in the winter. Everything depended on getting the food in from the field and it’s no wonder that the ancients revered this date as well as the gods and goddesses they associated with a bountiful harvest.
This weekend it was our modern day time to celebrate the harvest and to be thankful for all of the goodness that we have in our lives. There weren’t any bale fires of green men- just a few family members and a whole lotta love. I prepared a simple thanksgiving meal at home earlier in the week. The meal may have been simple but it was earthy and with it, I tried to honor the foods that come naturally from this land. The foods that the first peoples ate- pumpkin, turkey, corn, wild rice. It was a wonderful way to connect with the earth and feel firmly planted in the ground right here.
The colorful harvest moon has paled in the last month. It now hangs prominently in the darkening sky, bright, ethereal and cold. Fall is in the air- the gardens have withered and there was even a little snow a few days ago. My busy time, canning and preserving is over and the pantry is stocked and joyful. But the hard work is always worth doing and I am glad I was healthy and able to do it. I am thankful for all of the good food we will enjoy over the winter. I am thankful for the friends and family I will be privileged to share it with. I am thankful for health, and love and life…
…and I am thankful for you dear reader.