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

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Fire in the Head & The Wild Ways 2017

It's midwinter, and though the longest night is still ahead of us, soon the earth will be turning imperceptibly back towards the light. My witch hazel is on the cusp of shaking out its fragrant flowers, and today I counted 64 blue periwinkle flowers like tiny celestial wheels in the hedge up the lane. (In the Celtic Old Ways, the 5-petalled flowers are dedicated, like the apple, to the Goddess.)

So it's the end of another year when I've had the privilege of working deeply with many of you on my course and retreat programmes, once again. Thank you for what you bring of your stories, your poems, your explorations, your doubts, fears, laughter, sorrows and joys. A rich life makes space for them all, and there's community in the sharing.

Winter Solstice poem

Perhaps you, like me, question the point of writing and creativity when the world is going through such seemingly endless troubles – massacres in the Middle East, Trump, Brexit, lost and disappearing species, accelerating climate change, the rise of the far right, stories of hate crimes, abuse, homelessness, despair? Writing can seem indulgent at best.
But I also believe that it's precisely in these times that creative exploration, inquiry and expression can pull us through; it's exactly poetry that touches the heart, stories that speak to our condition and bring understanding, hope and empathy, writing that emerges from soul rather than ego that this fragmented world so needs.
'For it is important that awake people be awake ...
... the darkness around us is deep.' (William Stafford)
We need connection. We need to be reminded that we're part of a much bigger web. We need the power of imagination to fuel compassion, to tell ourselves a different story, to recreate something altogether more uplifting than despair and disaster.
Writing is one way of finding a new way home; of remaking our world, as we remake our consciousness. And the power of communication remains as potent as ever.
Let's remember the importance of the word; let's not give up.

And on that note, if you need more inspiration, creativity, fellowship of the kind I've spoken of, a boost for your inner and imaginal life, then my 2017 programme (beginning with my annual THRESHOLDS course for something like the 20th year, on Sunday 15th January in Totnes, Devon) is now available on my websites: Fire in the Head and The Wild Ways



  1. In a time of destruction what we need is creativity. Art can change the world, and it can heal. I've said the same on my blog recently, and I've noticed many other people saying similar things since you-know-who was elected.

    I so wish I was in your part of the world so that I could do one of your courses, Roselle. For now I admire your work from afar.

  2. Therese, lovely to have a comment from you. Thank you. Yes, in one small and subtle way the tide is turning – might take a while, but it's worth remembering that we are a collective, isn't it?

    Thank you for reminding me, too, that we are never alone in this.

    Might you post your blogpost link? Would be interested to read your thoughts.

    Warm wishes


    1. Here is the post, Roselle: It's a spin-off from an earlier post I wrote about the importance of reading, the link for that is within the post.

  3. Thanks, Therese. Will visit that later.


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