Winter Solstice Soup
One deep dark night, the women gathered. They came from all corners of the town, carrying bowls of chopped vegetables, onion, squash, leafy greens, celery, potatoes and carrots. Some of the women brought exotic spices from Morrocco and other places from far afield. They greeted one another with kisses and gifted the already simmering pot with their offerings.
Sitting before the fire, their hostess spoke of the Winter Solstice, the longest, blackest night of the year.
From this night forward, moments of daylight will multiply and grow. The earth feels it. We feel it. Tonight is a night of new beginnings, new possibilities.
Each visitor sang, spoke, wept and prayed for the world and for each other. Births and deaths were honored while angels held their breaths. Marriages and partings were recounted, guilts whispered and witnesssed. Hopes and dreams were flung into the fire and released to the heavens to be made manifest.
Time for the Solstice Soup.
Seated this time at the long wooden table, the air became ancient. Candles glimmering, crystal twinkling, the women slurped nourishment and chattered and patted and laughed and sighed. The purest of water provides ample intoxication when all is washed in love.
The night ends with sweets and more kisses and deep satisfaction. Winter Solstice. A new season begins.
Image one: Being Twelve, 2002, charcoal, pastel and colored pencil, Renee Folzenlogen
Image two: interior of French Park House, Cincinnati, Ohio