Leaping the Mountains

The tops of the trees are moving. It happened tonight, around 9pm.

I noticed because my love told me it would happen, this morning, as we walked the path down to Longfellow Creek. I was talking about the heat, we were both sweating, and I got all nerdy about how I heard that when the weather gets hot here, it builds up, a bubble of heat trapped against the Cascade Mountains, which bubble – if I were to get truly meteorologically nerdy – is called a high pressure zone. And it gets higher and higher and higher as the hot dry grass days persist and then it gets tall enough and leaps East over the mountains and as it does, it pulls in the marine winds from the West.

I told him all this, as we walked past the pale brown grass, the dry cottonwoods. He just walked and nodded. He may have known it already. He has a mind for many things, not least obscure bits of weather. And then I was saying, “You can smell it, the ocean, when the weather is about to break,” and he said “Yes, and you can see it. It moves the tops of the trees first. And then later, you feel the breeze.”

I’m back from California. I just smudged my house with a bundle of white sage that was a gift from one of the participants in my path and yesterday I officiated a wedding where I called in earth and water, sun and sky. I cast the circle with a burnt and rune-covered redwood wand. I did this in front of all these political people I’ve known and worked with for years.

Okay, I did invoke the elements in the ceremony, but the casting the circle part was done before most of them had arrived. But still, I did it. In front of the caterers, and the sisters of the groom, and one political pal, who was running the show, and politely waited until I was done to talk to me about my cues, and the DJ, a big blond bearded guy who watched me suspiciously all the way around the room, from North to East to South to West.

But then later, I went and hid in the DJ booth, because it was the only area where I could let the ticker tape of my speech run freely behind my eyeballs. And he came up to me and said, “So, were you saluting the directions?”

I looked up. “I was casting the circle…but yeah, I did call in each of the directions…”

He just kept looking at me, so I went on. “I called in North, which is the body, that they may connect through touch. I called in East, which is new beginnings and language, that their words may be tools of love. I called in South, for fire and passion and desire, and West, water, for a deep flow of heart between them. And then above and below.” I didn’t say for the Star Goddess and the Ancestors. But maybe I could have. Because he was nodding the whole time. And smiling.

“Cool,” he said. “I thought so.”

The tops of the trees are moving.