Saturday, December 19, 2009


Brighid was an Irish goddess, in many stories she was three sisters, all named Brighid. When the Christians came to the Isles Brighid became St. Brighid but her special care was still given to poets, healers, smiths, and crafters. An odd combination, but it does cover just about everything.

One special responsibility of the women of the house included putting the hearth fire to bed at night and rekindling it in the morning. Wonderful imagery in this poem. These women were traditional in every way but they were also very powerful in their own special way.

Brighid of the mantle, encompass us,
Lady of the lambs, protect us,
Keeper of the Hearth, kindle us,
Beneath your mantle gather us,
And restore us to memory.

Mothers of our mother,
Foremothers strong,
Guide our hands in yours.
Remind us how
To kindle the hearth,
To keep us bright,
To preserve the flame,
Your hands upon ours,
Our hands within yours,
To kindle the light
Both day and night.

The mantle of Brighid about us,
The memory of Brighid within us,
The protection of Brighid keeping us
From harm, from ignorance, from heartlessness,
This day and night,
From dawn till dark,
From dark till dawn.

Poem by Caitlin Matthews

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