from BARDO

The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.

Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made

is star-stuff too?

– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –

dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.

Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.

Roselle Angwin

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

and YES to the mist and rain (or solar and lunar principles)

I love the sun. I love being out in it, and the instant uplift all those bright photons bring. I've been finding excuses to get out into the sun as much as I can. And along with most other people in Britain I've bemoaned the fact that we've had so little of it, comparative to rain and wind, the last few summers. I've also been pissed off to lose so much of our veg crop to those rainbathers, the slugs and snails.

And yet... I loved stepping out, this morning, into the sweet misty damp in this corner of Devon; the soft scents of rosemary and lavender and geranium; the way the new spiders' webs caught and returned the light as so many sequins; the way mist had eclipsed the sharp outlines of things, dissolving boundaries; the way the oaks and ashes in the lane loosened fat raindrops into my uncovered hair. The sound of the branches sighing; the sound of the dog's wet paws on the twiggy lane surface.

The sun can at times be too demanding: the call is always there to be outside, to be active, to 'do' while the light is there, before the winter comes. The inner world needs, though, the penumbral; not just in the winter, but also, in my experience, daily, to balance the harsher, clearer penetration of solar energy. It needs to rest in shadowy places, to meander through a river valley, to sit and gaze, or to simply turn inwards, in quiet, with no purpose except to be inward.

We could say that spirit, the 'masculine' pole, is symbolised by this sharp-edged sword of the solar quality of energy: piercing the dark places with spears of light, bringing action, clarity, certainty, focus, objectivity, accuracy, intellect, the impersonal, the abstract, and a quality of 'outwardness' into the human world. It's drawn to space, sky, breadth and ascent. We could say that these are characteristics of the masculine principle abroad in the world, along with the rational and analytical mind that wants to unravel and understand all that it encounters.

But soul, the 'feminine' pole of this axis, is misty, inward, feeling-toned, moist, muse-ful, opaque, lunar, dreamy, lateral, receptive, instinctual, subjective, relational, imaginative and mysterious. Soul likes specific place, the personal, depth, darkness, descent.

The solar principle wants to penetrate mystery, understand it, explain it, conquer it, shake its meaning free, shape it. It wants to dispel shadow and confusion.

The lunar principle wants to enter mystery, be immersed in it, experience it, be entered by it, become it. It knows that light needs shadow, and order needs the breaking-down of apparent chaos and confusion before new life can be born. And it knows, too, that from these shadows life will emerge again, over and on, into the light. The law of continuing.


  1. So very beautifully expressed, Roselle.



  2. Marg, thank you. Your ongoing support matters to me. Love, Rx


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