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Writings and Photography by George Dula, Dooley MacBride &  Hemlock Evergreen
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The Newborn King of the Earth

Yule is at hand.  A man has just died.  Not just any man, but a very special wizened old man.  A king.  The king of all that is, the King of Nature.  A newborn baby cries, a babe is born.  A very special boy, born of the Lord and Lady of all the living Earth.  This child will live a life exactly one year, a very full life highly compressed, just as it is intended to be.  Yule has now come, and is gone once again.


January arrives and this child begins to crawl, to look around, to wonder about his world, his exciting realm.  With bright intelligent eyes, listening and learning, while all is covered with a soft white protective insulating blanket of gentle white snow.


February arrives with days getting longer by leaps and bounds, and the Earth’s creatures are sure of the coming not-so-distant springtime.  And the boy king is proud, and watches and learns as he walks on a child’s small feet through woodlands and meadows drifted deep with blizzard snows.


March arrives and the early signs of springtime are at hand.  The streams and the Land thaw and seeds nestled in the cold dark soils begin to be warmed by the strengthening sunlight. Saps in the maples, oaks and ash begin to flow.  Days continue to lengthen and the tall strong bronzed boy runs and thrills in the signs of an Earth coming alive.


April comes in with trees budding and wildflowers poking their colorful heads skyward out of the steadily warming soils.  The Boy King is quickly moving toward manhood, restlessly wandering ever farther afield and climbing ever taller trees, looking and learning, and yearning with desire – for what, as yet, he knows not.


May is here, and the creatures of this Earth are selecting mates and sating their manifold lusts.  The Boy King has now fully grown into manhood fully in his prime, with his mate by his side by the Beltane fire amongst the standing stones.  Oh such beauty, May Queen, ageless perennial Goddess of Nature, fair and soft and warm yet knowledgeable and wise far beyond her apparent years.  And he, at the peak of manhood, tall and proud and thoughtful, curious and willing.  The skies thunder with Beltane storms and, as he fills her sacred well, the creeks run full, and all is good.


June arrives and the manly king of nature rubs his Bride Queen’s still flat belly, but just as the Earth is alive with her children, so her belly will swell with his seed within.  The Earth is lush with life’s midsummer greenery and the creatures therein thrive.


July arrives and the Man King runs and thrills in the Earth’s growing life, lush and green.  Known or unknown to mortal mankind he helps push the plows and with tilling of fertile soils; he gently caresses the growing seedlings so  they may grow toward the sky!  Oh, the beauty of his growing realm!  “My bride, how your belly swells, let me gently rub the child within.”


August is here, and it’s time for the first harvests.  Blackberries!  Raspberries! Cherries!  And oh, the grains!  The meads and beers and ales do now flow, oh the wonder of it all!  “I wander amongst the peoples of the Land and partake of their generous offerings, but they know not who I am.”  The King is a wondrous husbandman of great wisdom and vigor!


September.  “Is that a chill in the air?  My, how it begins to bite!”  The crops are still coming in, under the mature King’s watchful care.  The squirrels, rabbits, bears and other creatures are storing away the abundant acorns and nuts and grains for the hard winter they somehow know is ahead.  The days, they noticeably begin to shorten, and a time comes when the dark of night overtakes the light of day, and the harvests continue.  Apples!  Grapes! Corn!  Grains!  “Oh, the wonderful wines and ciders to be had, and I gratefully enjoy that which is offered to me.”  The King is looking very kingly these days, rather careworn and deeply furrowed of brow.  His love for the living has taken its toll, but that’s as it’s intended to be...


October and her harvest moon are here at last, with the final gatherings of root crops collected for the cold that’s showing itself.  “But oh, my still lovely and fair young bride’s well-rounded belly is still so warm and soft.  Oh my, the days do begin to bite…”  Winter raiments of wool and fur begins to cover his still strong tanned body.  The final harvest’s bonfires warm the spirit, and the wonderful meads offered do taste so good.  Some say that this is the time of the new year and new beginnings but I say not yet...not-quite-yet....


November is here and the time of the hunts begin as Orion and his hound swing high overhead; the crops are all gathered, and life begins to change.  Things slow down and people become reflective, looking back over the preceding year.  “Oh, what a good year I’ve had!  Look to my May Queen bride, marvelous with full belly ripe with my son.  Almost time...  And the look in her eyes, of wisdom and love and knowing, and yet more love.”  My, wasn’t it only yesterday that a boy was running in the early winter snows?  And now the fires feel good to his tired knees, as the seasons continue to roll forward.  It’s a time for thankfulness, for all that we’ve managed to do over the year, and for looking ahead toward the harshness of winter.  He pulls his warm woolen cloak tighter around himself and his very pregnant Bride.


December, a special month of celebration and sharing.  Such beauty there is in the white mantle of protective snow covering well-stocked nests beneath dormant grasses and fallen leaves of autumn.  An elderly King walks with his bride, once again in the snow.  “What will our child see in the seasons ahead?  Will it be a year of promise and peace and hope?  Some will see, but me, I’m so tired….  Look at the frosty pink and red and purple berries, and the dark green leaves of the holly and the ivy, the hemlocks and the rhododendrons, a promise of life in the white and grey and brown of winter.  Oh, let me rest my head against your breasts and nest my tired hands against your warm fertile belly.  I’m so tired, and want to sleep against your warmth on this longest night of the year, my lovely ageless loving bride, my loving May Queen.”  Gently stroking his brow and hair as she smiles sadly and knowingly, she helps him to peacefully sleep...


That Yule night a magnificent King of the Earth dies.  And a very special newborn babe cries, their son, son of the Powers of Nature, God and Goddess, Lord and Lady.  Peace on Earth, goodwill toward all alive.  The seasons continue to unfold as they should, and life reborn goes on.  All is well...


Written in 2008 by Hemlock Evergreen

© George Dula


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