Saturday, October 29, 2005

Samhain for Dummies

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored!" This is the site where we ponder big questions about deities.

For instance: Do you think the people building the Parthenon thought they were constructing a pretty tourist attraction dedicated to myths? Let's put it another way. How do you think humans in 3006 will feel about Winchester Cathedral, assuming it's as solid as the Parthenon?

If this question makes you think, you've found your way to a user-friendly blog!

Samhain weekend is upon us, and this is the year my dear father went to be with Peter Pan.

Nonsense! You mega-churchers shout. Peter Pan is a fairy tale!

Lop off that "tale," and you've got it right.

Just after he was moved into the critical care ward, and strapped into a Geri-chair, my dear dad ( a druid though he didn't know it), told me the following:

Dad: Guess who I saw standing in the doorway of this room?

Anne: Who?

Dad: Peter Pan! And he had his hands on his hips, just like in the movies!

Gentle readers, can you conceive how much comfort I take from this bold assertion? Now here's the topper:

It fell to me to clean out Dad's apartment and move his clothing to his deathbed room. (It faced due west, by the way, and had a princely view of the mountains.)

I didn't want Dad to see me filling the closet of a critical care room with his clothing. What worse symbol could there be of his condition, except perhaps hanging up a sign that said ABANDON ALL HOPE, YE WHO ENTER HERE.

As luck would have it, Dad was sleeping when I arrived with the first bundle of his clothes. The Today Show was playing on the t.v.

Literally the first thing I heard when I walked into the room was Matt Laurer (sp?) say: "This morning we're going to talk about Peter Pan! There's a new book out, all about Peter Pan ..."

By all the fairies, I had to go out in the hall to catch my breath.

Do you believe in magic? I never watch the Today Show. Literally. By that time I'm usually immersed in the latest scholarly studies about goat milk production.

Coincidence? What do you think, Scott? You've read your Robert Anton Wilson.

In January, Dad went off to Neverland and left behind a hospital room plastered with Bible verses (sister) and one little statue of Peter Pan (me).

Will Dad visit me on Samhain? I doubt it. His life was hard, his end was hard, and my guess is he's having the time of his life being a boy again. The only part of his life that was happy was his childhood, and that was idyllic.

But as the veil thins on Samhain, I hope Dad will take a break from the mermaids and pirates to come on by, so I can thank him for sending me to Billy Bob Agricultural/Technical High School, where I've met a wonderful teacher named Mr. Boone who has helped fill the void in my life.

That's what Halloween is all about, Dobson dearie. And that's why the daft Christian missionaries who descended to conquer Avalon couldn't send this holy day to oblivion. Living people miss their departed folk more than anything.

We celebrate Samhain because the Christian missionaries made a deal with the druids: Keep your holiday, and take Jesus too.

Otherwise, poor Jesus wouldn't have gained a foothold in the British Isles.

So light a bonfire (candles will do), fire up your Jack-o-lantern (ancient custom), and just sit and wait for the Other Side to open to you. Make some New Year's resolutions. Sip a good single malt, and don't forget to leave a portion of it outside for the fairies!

Halloween literally means "Holy Evening." So might it be.

FROM ANNE
THE MERLIN OF BERKELEY SPRINGS

2 Comments:

At October 31, 2005 , Blogger Scott said...

As I said before, I don't believe in coincidence,,,, a happy synchronicity is what I would call it.... Too cool.
And be open to a visit from your dad,,, you never know!!! Much Love this Samhain, I just found out another friend passed over this weekend,,,, what's up with everone ditching out on us NOW!!!

 
At October 31, 2005 , Blogger Anne Johnson said...

Yeah, those dead folks are going to miss the next Great Depression, due to start any day! Combine that with bird flu, and you've got every reason to stay alive.

Remember, those who go are better off than those of us who have to stay.

As Mark Twain put it, "Why do people cry at funerals and rejoice at births? Because it's not them."

 

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