My hands and lips still tingle.  This morning, afternoon, time rushing by like a river from my tongue.

On the beach in Co. Larne

Two weeks ago I found myself in Co. Larne, along the northern coast of North Ireland.  Here the Atlantic and Irish seas meet, battle, rocks rising like stacks of coins and hope silently speaking of boats out to sea.  This is the region where Vikings hit Ulster shores, with later landings along this area and to the east and south from Saxon and Normans to come.  We were on our way to Donegal, and finally to Gleann Cholm Cille- the furthest west the Roman Empire’s legionaries ever set foot.

Stopping in Larne, we found a beach that caught the attention of both of us.  Making our way, I found beautiful white ocean-tossed stones… and heard them call.  These are to be runes, they said.  Let us be runes.

I blinked, as I have what I jokingly call Norse blindness.  I have been at a fair number of spirit possessions over the years, and my body can tell whether many of them are real, or faked, or somewhere in between.  My body’s training in formal service takes over, takes the forefront, if Deity is present- especially if there is no one there set and trained to serve that deity.  But at possessions involving Norse deities- I feel nothing.  I can tell you that the person I knew whose body is occupied is “not home,” but that’s about it.

So when they said make runes of us, I blinked.

I collected 90 stones or so anyway, just in case I really did need to.

Home, I hit the books.  I read through websites and flipped through segments of books about runes and other magical languages, other divination tools.  Reading through a large bulk of RUNES by Galina Krassakova, I was struck by the notion of each rune having it’s own spirit.  That most rune throwers have some runes they have better empathy.  I compared this to my own experience with Tarot and Ogham.  Tarot, in my experience, has a single voice.  You are working with THE TAROT, not the individual spirit of the Queen of Cups.  Each face has its own truths, but they do not have individual essences unless the worker has sought out to imbue them each with their own personality.  In this case, it is a specific deck that speaks that way, not all decks containing a specific card.

Some tarot deck imprints have their own personality.  The Deviant Moon tarot seems to call out to Children of Lilith for example, while many Feri or ethneogen users I know have stumbled across Morgan’s Tarot and it’s tools for access the artistic side of our brain.  Ogham on the other hand has an ancestral memory woven in.  It is not a specific spirit, it echoes of a lineage and birthline.  I know very few folks of non-celtic descent who have been able to work with the tool without first having sworn some sort of oath to a tradition of that lineage.

Tyr's Aett, from the st set of runes I made

As I sat and meditated on the notion of runes, it hit me.  I have worked well with folks who serve Norse Deity, and with spirits affiliated with Norse Deity, just not with Norse Deities themselves.  I could be “Norse Blind” and still let the Wyrd work through me, as it works through, with, and into us all.  I am part of the Wurd, affect Wyrd, am a Wyrd Worker, whether or not I can have a meaningful conversation with Odin, or can “see” Loki, Tyr, Hela, or so many others.

Thus far, I have made two sets- each with their own VERY distinct personality as collective units.  The first was done with the air blowing, candles lit, sitting on comfortable cushions with laptops open and a subtle smile on my face.  As I started I thought I was making them for a child of Loki I know… but as they evolved, half way through the first Aett if the Elder Futhark, I realized that it was actually for their spouse, a Tyr’s Man I have profound respect for- and whom I have gifted very little.  Realizing this, I held onto thoughts in my bones of strength in the face of adversity, compassion, focus, abundance, and connection to tribe.  I tucked a feather into the unused stones.

The second set was made 2 days later.  I woke up late, having had extreme sensitivity to sound and emotion the night before.  My body screamed, now, yes, water, yes, waves yes, now.  Make them now.

I grabbed the unused stones and headed into the bathroom, the easiest space I had for large amounts of water in my apartment.  I grabbed other supplies, laid them out, turned on low light, and pulled minerals for the bath.  The bathwater was warm, no, hot.  Hot.  Too hot for comfort, but just shy of the possibility of scalding.  Enough to hurt.

Water still filling, I crawled in and sweated into the water.  Sweated out of my body while my skin ached in pain, a fine line near therapeutic.  I felt the heat crawl into me, the water echo into me.  I filled up, filled in, filled full, until my hands shook and pushed and I felt for a moment my place in the great tapestry.  Heard the differences in tongues I did not speak between the Norns and the Moirae.  I felt the thread of life that was mine, and how it wove in and out and was yet to be dictated as to where ripples would come yet, even if there were more likely paths that I could read.  I chose not to read.

When my hands were ready, they told me.  I wrapped a towel around me like a shawl, sat on the ground, and began to draw.  Each rune had a stone it wanted, and I found them each in turn.  I read the name, the meaning, the concept, and felt each one pass from my eyes and lips into my hands, into the stone, and written with the mark I sat each in order along the edge of the tub.  The tub edge filled from one end to the other.

Second set of runes, dedicated to Laguz

I straddled between water and land, over the rune set, a gift I now knew was going to a tribal group I know.  In standing between hot water and cold earth, I felt myself between worlds.  Watery wyrd, flowing truths, tidal flows.  The rune that echoed through me was Laguz, water, healing life energy and psychic powers.  The underworld, secrets, fertility, flow.  I let it flow out and in.  Out, in, through.

Finally, I crawled back in the water, submerging my face and throat.  I reached into my gills and pulled out fear that I had felt the night before, and watch one hook turn to sludge and wash away, one hook turn to powder and blow away.

The water pulled off of me, the energy pulled off of me, as it pulled down the drain.  I thought of Paul Frank’s depiction of Hela.  I thought of water moving in different directions down drains and how it effects our energy.  I thought of the clan I was gifting this too, and how I missed its members.

I cleaned up.  I put the spare stones on the alter in the Temple.  I broke my fast.  I petted the dog.  I acknowledged how Wyrd moves in different ways.  I contemplated water and its awesome functionality and purposes.  I breathed, and moved into a new day.