Wild Things

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It’s amazing how beautiful so many little things are when you’re walking in the woods: cones and acorns, seeds and pods, things that used to be flowers… You can take pictures of them but , somehow, two dimensions doesn’t seem to do them justice.  So sometimes, you pick them up and stick them in your pockets.  I don’t know about you, but I have tons of things I’ve picked up and brought home just because they’re so beautiful.

The idea of making wreaths with them sprouted from when I first came to Spoutwood Farm years and years ago: hired to make dried flower wreaths to sell at shows.  Funny.  Now, dried things, wreaths again … full circle.

When I first started doing this a few weeks ago,  the beauty was my only thought. But as I gathered all these beautiful little ones and started to work with them, I felt their influences in other ways and realized that all of them had that thing that other cultures might call “medicine.” I realized that being drawn to make wreaths out of brambles was a garnering of protection medicine; that other beings that jumped into my pockets and baskets were embodiments of toughness and nurturing and strength and endurance and prosperity … qualities that I wanted. So I thought that perhaps all these little guys were wanting to share their medicine with me and with other people too. So, here they are. Their aim: to pass along to any who feel attracted to or in need of such earthy and arcane things, the power and example of their essences and symbology… or perhaps of just their beauty.

In these wreaths you’ll find,

  • Wisteria, Honeysuckle and Wild Grapevine for persistence and prosperity, even proliferation … and sweetness
  • Brambles for protection
  • Hosta flowers and Japanese Knotweed for burgeoning hardiness even in the face of persecution, difficult environs or the appetites of others
  • The burs of the American Chestnut trees that endure even in the face of disease.
  • Red oak leaves and acorns for their towering strength and nurturing.
  • Rose O Sharon that symbolizes beauty.
  • Pine cones that have been nibbled by squirrels and chipmunks and so nourished them
  • Wild mint for simple joy
  • Mullein for breathing
  • Asters for patience and elegance
  • Dried corn kernels for plenty and prosperity
  • Budding branchlets for new endeavors
  • Beautifully colored bracket fungi, that grow and take life from trees that have died: life come from death… a new beginning from an ending.
  • Plus all the many nameless woods weeds for the parts of us that perhaps the rest of the world would call useless or unimportant but that are nonetheless beautiful and amazing and necessary no matter what anyone else thinks.
  • And, finally, cast off vintage bits and bobs to stand for our old habits, memories and experiences; things that we have discarded or forgotten (on purpose?) … that perhaps we thought we were done with, yet keep cropping up from time to time.   Perhaps we felt we wanted to get rid of them, put them away from us, deny them. And yet, unexpectedly … even unwelcome… here they are again … and again.   Just maybe, we need to honor these lessons or experiences or struggles as parts of us, pieces of our journey.  Schoolings that spiral around to us again and again so we don’t forget or so we can learn to be unafraid of them or even unashamed of them. They are a part of us. And part of what makes us beautiful in the eyes of the universe.

And so, now, this is it: The last year that our favorite Fairie Festival will be held at Spoutwood Farm.

It’s so wild that it’s been 27 years.
So wild that it’s grown as big as it has: 10,000 to 20,000 people attending, (depending on the weather).
So wild that it’s now both the biggest and the oldest Fairie Festival in the country.
So wild … and so sad … that this is the last one that Spoutwood will host.

Perhaps in honor of this event … or because of it … this somber but honorable event … these new wild beings have come to join us in our booth at Fairie Festival: woods weeds, wintered garden pods, wild field fare and a few cast offs that have twisted and wound and bound themselves into spiraling wreaths of beauty, protections, blessings, wishes and intentions.

Come and see!
Come and meet these wild things.
Maybe make a new friend.

Wild Hawthorn in the Fairie Garden (nearside of the farmhouse)
Fairie Festival at Spoutwood Farm May 4th,5th, & 6th.

 

 

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