31st October/1stNovember

For many people, Samhain is the greatest festival of ancient times. On the night of 31st October/1st November the Old Year crosses over into the New. It is a magical time when spirits walk the earth as the veil between the incarnate and spirit worlds is thinnest. It is a time of rest, stillness, regrouping and re-creating. As the Old Year sinks to its death, the beginnings of decay nourish new life. Fallen leaves again fuel the cycle of renewal.

The illustration shows Wayland Smithy, a Neolithic tomb located in a recently planted (c. 1900) beech grove on the downs south of Oxford. The Dark Moon is obscured by a (ghost) barn owl. Beech signifies ancient knowledge revealed through old places and objects, providing guidance and a firm foundation for the present.