What is more wondrous and expressive of spring’s energetic regeneration than a lovely verse and exquisite painting?
Her name means Beautiful Moon.
But to this fair Belphoebe in her Birth
The Heavens so favourable were and free,
Looking with mild Aspect upon the Earth,
In th’ Horoscope of her Nativity,
That all the Gifts of Grace and Chastity
On her they poured forth of plenteous Horn;
Jove laugh’d on Venus from his sovereign See,
And Phoebus with fair Beams did her adorn,
And all the Graces rock’d her Cradle, being born.
The Faerie Queene, Edmund Spenser, 1590
Henry Fuseli [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Cheers & Happy Reading!
Flossie Benton Rogers, Conjuring the Magic in Romance
Photo by Alicia
Now that we’re properly besotted with Outlander the television series as well as Diana Gabaldon’s books, it’s time for a little excursion into Scotland. Born in 1220 in Ercel’s Down, Scotland, the man who came to be known as Thomas the Rhymer was both a poet and a seer. His power of prophecy came from none other than the Fairy Queen herself, Ercel. One summer day alongside the river bank, she sat with claret wine in her lap and offered to let Thomas rest his head there. After getting to know him a bit and judging him worthy, she bestowed upon him the name True Thomas. She then showed him a secret road leading to “fair Elf land.” With great excitement, he set off down the path. It was not an easy journey, and at one point he encountered a river of blood. Wading across took forty days and nights. Afterward, he came to a mysterious place with no sun or moon but where he could hear the crashing waves of the sea. Thomas remained seven years in this magical realm, uncovering arcane knowledge. He then returned to the regular world to share his gifts with the Scottish people.
Thomas the Rhymer became a renowned wizard, sage, poet, and prophet, along the lines of the English Merlin. He foretold many important events in Scottish history. Thomas lived until 1298, when Ercel undoubtedly mounted her cat driven chariot and drove him back to the land of fairy. Many of Thomas’ prophetic rhymes became part of Scottish folklore. An example (in modern tongue) is: “As long as this thorn tree stands, Ercel’s Down shall keep its lands.”
Cheers & Happy Reading!
Flossie Benton Rogers, Conjuring the Magic with Paranormal Fantasy Romance