Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Spinning My Wheels

Superwash Merino top in dye bath
   "I Plow and Sow (sew) and Reap and Mow and the Usual Sit and Spin..." 
                                                                                    - traditional Celtic folk song

Have you ever been listening to a song for years and then all of a sudden a line hits you right between the eyes? Well that's how I feel about the line from the song, "One Misty Moisty Morning" from the album "Parcel of Rogues" by the British Band, Steeleye Span.  If ever a line from a song described my life to a "T" - that one is it!

  If you live on a farmstead your life is governed by the seasons and how you spend your time is dictated by the weather.  Winter is coming - and the preparations involve a lot of cleaning up.  You know the drill, raking leaves, picking up pine cones, raking the loose gravel to get rid of any wayward loose rock that might become a weapon in the snow blower, sticks the dog drug in that might become a harpoon and general buckets of frozen plant material on to the compost pile.  By the end of the day your hands are bright red from the cold, your back isn't at all happy and guess what?  It's only 4:15 and it's dark already.  Welcome to Washington.  Every time you walk out the front door the sheep all yell at you from a distance "Hey - it's cold today, surely we deserve more hay even though it is too early, right??"  Yeah, right....

So, how does one find balance in all of this.  How do you make yourself put one foot in front of the other when your body says "Are you really sure you have to do this?"  I have to admit, I don't know how I make myself do it - you just do what needs to be done.  After all, there isn't really any other option.  I wouldn't trade the lessons I've learned about how strong I truly am in the face of a crisis.  I wouldn't trade the whole experience of living with the seasons and being in touch of my source of supply.  Sometimes when you are so exhausted that you think you can't take one more step forward, the Universe sends you a moment of grace that takes your breath away and you know without a doubt that no amount of city conveniences would be worth missing what ever gift it may be.

At the end of a long day when everything is finally done and (hopefully) there is no more demands on your tired body you get to balance your spirit again - you guessed it, I get to sit and Spin...

Spinning singles
Plied yarn
As the fiber flows through my fingers and my foot tap, tap, taps the foot pedal in time with the beating of my heart, the tiredness fades away and the energy flows through my being and the Universe begins to make sense again.  Like a piece of music, the rhythm sooths the kinks in my spirit away.  Another moment of grace.  Like the release of breath when one sighs with relief, the energy of all the women who came before me flows through my fingers connecting me with them.  That circle of women that made the yarn, wove or knitted it and sheltered their families in that caress of the soul.
finished yarn

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