Posted in Arcana, Events, tagged 2013, April, Art, Articles, Blog, Culture, Easter, Easter Egg, Equinox, Features, Galleries, History, Inspiration, Lent, Mad March Hare, Nature, New Age, Ostara, Pagan, Photography, Religion, Spirituality, Spring Equinox, Vernal Equinox, Wheel Of The Year, Wicca, Ēostre on March 20, 2013 |
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Ostara (Old High German) or Ēostre (Old English) falls upon 20th March 2013. It is one of eight ancient Wheel Of The Year festivals denoting seasonal shifts.
Ostara marks The Vernal (meaning “youthful”) Equinox: the height of Spring.
Daylight and darkness are balanced at The Equinox, prior to the lengthening of days: a period sometimes referred to as Lent. It is a time to celebrate fecundity and growth.
Ostara is named for an ancient Germanic goddess and the month that bears her name; Ôstarmânoth, now April.
Ostara is a dawn goddess associated to the Greek Eos and the Roman Aurora. She represents the resurrection of light following the death of Winter.
Ostara’s totem animal is the hare: a symbol of fertility dating back to prehistoric times. The hare was admired for its enthusiastic mating rituals and it’s associations to moon goddesses and the female reproductive cycle.
Eggs are an ancient symbol of renewal, fertility and life-force. They can be decorated to represent the wishes we hope will manifest in the coming summer.
Eggs were used to play a number of festival games such as treasure hunts, races and relays (our modern egg and spoon race).
Ostara is a solar festival so bonfires, hearth fires and candles can also be lit.
The daffodil or “harbinger of Spring” is the traditional flower of the Ostara festival.
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Posted in Books, Reviews, tagged Angela Carter, Book of Lost Things, Book review, Easter, Easter Egg, Fairy tale, John Connolly, Lily Wight, Literature on April 6, 2012 |
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It’s almost Easter, Blogsprites! I hope you are all getting a long-weekend off at the very least
Here is an early Easter Egg for you, crack it open and you will find a golden and glowing review of John Connolly’s The Book of Lost Things, in keeping with my current explorations into The Realm of Faerie.
It is hard to beat Angela Carter’s potent re-imaginings of traditional Fairy Tales but John Connolly may boast a valiant and successful attempt.
The young hero’s struggle to adjust to his step-family under the shadow of The Blitz is realistic and heartfelt but unfortunately the tone alters and the pace flounders during a flabby middle section inspired by tired and predictable medieval quest romances.
Connolly’s work suffers a little under too many influences; Narnia, Oz, Wonderland, Labyrinth and even The Box of Delights are all thrown into the mix. Focus is restored most triumphantly however in a dramatic ending which is surprisingly horrific considering the overall “kidult” tone.
The Book of Lost Things, with its exquisite title, could have possessed more depth if freed from the influence of so many other contemporary retellings of old tales. Despite this, when Connolly finds his own voice the story soars and delivers a truly terrifying villain.
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