Shadow art with trees, land art with keys
Welcome to the wyrd and wonderful world of the Ash Grove!
Welcome, welcome, welcome, fellow Enbies, Gender Transcenders, Walkers-Between-Worlds, Wilderness Wanderers, Radical Faeries, Celts, Brythonics, Sophians, Christ-Magdalenes, God/dess-lovers, Awenydd, Bards, Ovates, Druids, Spirit-Keepers, Songworkers, Timeweavers, Magicians, Shape-Shifters, Mischief-Makers, Tricksters, LGBTQ-QIN-DSAP2+sters, People of the Deep Mystery, People-Who-Hate-Labels, and, of course, People of the Rainbow!
(Have I missed anyone, other than Patriarchals?)
If you’re looking for Spacecat, they’re not here. Pretty soon they’ll have a blog of their own, with selfies, stories, recipes and all sorts of other intergalactic deliciousness. But this is Ash’s own private blogspace, and Spacecat respects their boundaries.
This is a real ash grove in the so-called `New’ Forest, which was given that name a thousand years ago when it was conquered by William the Conqueror. Before that, it was known as Ytene, the place of the Jutes. And before it was invaded by the Jutes… it must have had a Brythonic name. But that name is lost in the mists of time, and even with all my Timeweaving superpowers I haven’t been able to find it. If anyone has tracked it down, please get in touch. I like to know #MyPlaceInNature inside-out!
The Ash Grove itself is a circle of ash trees with a space just big enough for me to stand in. It’s the place I come home to. It gives me the strength to cope with tax bills, dirty dishes, bin bags, broken toilets, mouldy oranges, Patriarchal idiots who are put in charge of countries (sorry, what? Am I implying there’s a connection between those last two items in the list? Of course not…), forms that only have boxes for ‘Male’ and ‘Female’, dysphoria, enbyphobia, transphobia, homophobia, and all the other forms of bleurgh that the so-called ‘modern’ world throws at me.
It’s the place that keeps me… no, I won’t say `sane’. It’s the place that keeps me flourishing. It’s where I find my Keys and face my shadows. So here are some pictures of me doing exactly that… making shadow art with trees, and land art with keys.
Because the First Key to Happiness, the Key of Peace, is Reconnecting with Nature.
In the sacred calendar of the Nineteen Songs of Remembering, today, 10th January, marks the beginning of the Awakening of the Inner Child. We’re counting down the three weeks to Imbolc, the celebration of the ‘First Stirrings of Spring’, on February 1st. So as well as making rainbow pompoms for the launch of the world’s first ever Rainbow Tent at The Art House, Southampton, on 27 February (something that we’re already getting stupidly excited about), I’ve delegated the DreamTeam over at Reconnecting Rainbows HQ to start creating art on the themes of ‘The Adventurer’ and ‘The Visionary’.
February is going to be an AWESOME month, and not just because it’s LGBTQ+ History Month here in the UK. We’re hatching plans for the ‘B Right On’ LGBTQ+ Mind, Body and Spirit Festival. We’re launching our ACTUAL BOOK, Happiness, The Four Keys: It’s LGBTQ+ Mental Health, Spacecat, But Not As We Know It, whether we’re ready or not. Perfectionism died with my undeadname. (Wait, it’s not dead yet? Damn…)
We’re Rainbow Tenting. We’re Songworking. We’re making cashew cheese. We’re relighting the Sacred Flame. Ahhhh! So much deliciousness, so little time to get ready!
And meanwhile, I haven’t even got time to talk tp you any more, because I have to go and deal with tax bills, dirty dishes, broken toilets, mouldy oranges AND bin bags, and I only have 42 minutes to do it. Bleurgh to the power of five! But keep watching this space to see how our preparations for Imbolc unfold…
Love, Ash x