Stillness amid motion: the squirrels and chipmunks rustling the leaves as they bury nuts. The sun glancing off leaves that are as yet green, but tinged with brown weariness. My hands take on the sharp scent of the rosemary as I clip the green stems, tying them up and hanging them in the garage. The soft scent of laundry wafts from the line.
So much of autumn is motion — domestic, preparatory, dealing with the realities of food, shelter, necessities through the winter. It is earthiness, the last thrust of blooming goldenrod beneath a perfect blue sky touched just slightly by the oncoming hardness.
I was scratching my head today about how the domestic round has kept me from the spiritual things, but I don’t think that’s accurate. It’s kept me from the set-apart spiritual, the sacred and the taboo, the realm of clanging bell branches, ritual implements and painted faces, of time apart with my temple door shut.
But the spiritual that encompasses the domestic remains. Brighid’s kitchen candle burns merrily as she accepts the offerings of my labor — my offerings to house and husband and home. A work-offering to the house is also an offering to the house-spirit and the house-gods. Helping or feeding loved ones also honors love’s gods. As I toss rejected tomatoes to the squirrels from my deck garden, I am also making the offering to the land spirits of which they and their kind are part.
Whether housework is drudgery or divine is determined by your perspective.