Lying in the meadow grass
And gazing at the autumn sky,
“Dear Father Sun,” said George out loud,
“It will be winter by and by.”
“The nights will be long, dark, and cold.
Jack Frost will freeze the ground.
How shall I find the light
With so much darkness all around?”
Said Father Sun, “I’ll give you from my
Last autumn rays, a spark,
If you will make a little house
To hold it in the dark.”
With paper, paint, some windows
And a candle it was done!
George came out and held his lantern
Up to Father Sun.
Suddenly the windows lit,
The spark was dancing bright.
George carried home
His lantern in the twilight.
(poem found here)
last thursday i realized during naptime that it was martinmas. martinmas is a holiday/festival that i was totally unaware of until i developed my interested in waldorf education. (i am going to skip right over trying to explain it at all. google can do a much better job of it!) i am so new to all of this but somehow, martinmas felt like a nice one for us to try. i skipped around the internet and flipped through some of my waldorf seasonal books that day gathering up lantern making tutorials and songs/stories/poems related to martinmas to find little things that i could piece together for us. and then i made a truly wonderful decision – instead of rushing us through stories, poems and activities that afternoon so that we could do a lantern walk that night i could just wait a week. just let go of the date and give us a week to find our way there.
over the weekend i began to tell the story of saint martin cutting his cloak in half to share it with the beggar and we carried that into this week. then i introduced several of the poems and songs shared in the martinmas circle linked to above. i ended up landing with two or three that seemed to light up their eyes which i read and recited to them here and there yesterday and today. no pressure on myself to know anything too well. no pressure on us to be a certain way. just filling in the space of our days with what felt good.
this morning we worked away on our lanterns in preparation for tonights walk. it felt so good. i can’t put into words why and i don’t want to get too sucked into analyzing it with my head. i am not sure if it was the joy of just going for it – instead of waiting for perfection – or if it was the energy of this particular festival getting inside me.
i won’t be sitting around a beautiful fire at a waldorf school tonight with watercolor painted lanterns. i don’t have anything memorized to recite to as we tromp around our acre of land. i am not sure the candles will stay lit or the lanterns themselves will hold up to a walk in the hands of 2 and 4.5 year old. it doesn’t seem to matter though. it seems to just feel like – ok, this is us. i love us.
I’m coming with my lantern
And my lantern comes with me.
There over the light are stars,
Here under the light are we.
My light is out,
We’re going home,
Rabimmel, rabammel, rum!
(also from here)