We celebrated the Solstice with a Norse boast, a drinking game that the Norsemen of the cold North used to while away the long nights of winter. We borrowed it, feeling that the boasting aspect of it – making things as grand and elaborate and LONG as possible – seemed in alignment with the sun’s longest journey in the sky.
A Norse boast is drunk in four rounds as follows:
Round 1: For my Goddess I, of course, chose my patron Goddess for the year from my intuitive reading by Amy Palko. Rhiannon is from the Welsh pantheon, often depicted riding through the woods. It is said her lover, spying her riding, fell in love and began the chase. She kept running until. exhausted, he finally stopped. Calling out to her he asked her to stop, too, and (quite relieved) she did. Rhiannon reminds me to ask for what it is I want and need, with clarity, rather than chasing it down.
Round 2: For my hero I chose Leonard Cohen, the man best known for writing Hallelujah. I love the way he blends together irreverence and sacredness in his songs. How grit and holiness abide next to each other. And how he allows himself doubt, which makes his belief that much stronger.
Round 3: I once accused myself of not having stick-to-it-iveness so today I boasted the project that adorned our circle. I began the banners 17 years ago. I’ve managed to keep the pieces together, moving twice, working on them over the years. They are about two hours shy of completion but far enough along to finally use. Today I celebrated the stick-to-it-iveness that I always feared I lacked but which apparently I do have!
I’m always so pleased and amazed by what gets spoken into the circle. The stories we spin say as much about us and what we value as they do about the Names of the Divine and the heroes we call on. The personal victories that we share, so often based on overcoming our fears, are humbling and inspiring.
The circle is open but unbroken. Merry meet, merry part…until merry meet again!