Winter is an interesting season. Often we talk of the beauty of snow and bare limbs or the regal evergreens. Conversely we complain about the slick roads, work shoveling, or lack of sunlight giving us the blues. We both long for hibernation and the activity that sunshine will bring. It is these conflicting emotions and insights that bring s to embrace the Winter Solstice that many call Yule. Both the first day of winter and the date marking the returning and strengthening sun. With these energies in mind, I wish you Happy Yule Witches!
As we enter the winter months, my thoughts turn to the Gods and Goddesses of the snow and ice. With these in mind, I wanted to share 2 prayers:
Lord of Winter (a prayer to Ullr) by Ari
Did you always bring the snow?
It may be we shall never know,
But now Ullr’s faithful come
To hail his name, to beat the drum,
To burn the old, to cry for white
Shining like crystal-frozen light
On every mountainside and slope –
They give their best, they give their hope,
And Ullr gives them finest snow,
That they may make a merry row
And praise his name to heaven’s height,
And praise his winter-wonder’s might.
Hail to the Lord of Arrow and Ski,
The Lord of Winter now you be.
In Honor of Skadi: Praise for the Goddess of Winter by Wissenschaft
Hail Skadi! Hail to the Goddess of Winter and Mistress of Snow!
Mountain Warrior and Priestess of Ice, I love You so!
Champion of the Tundra, I praise Your strength and skill.
Your prowess inspires me and motivates my quill.
As I visualize You skiing down the slopes, my ink pays tribute.
Your elegance is present in Your every movement so precise and astute.
The snow responds to You like ink upon the page of a poet.
Your poetry becomes a wintry song that entices my soul into a duet.
In Your presence, I feel the weight of my Midgard duties subside.
While duty is important to You, I am permitted to embrace stillness inside.
Thank You for the gift of stillness that I use to contemplate meandering pathways.
Thank You for the gift of Your presence that I will cherish always.
Beneath Your icy touch, I am healed and made whole.
My devotion to You is absolute as You teach me my role.
By Your will, I exist and serve.
By Your grace, I have more than I deserve.
You have me mediate on an arrow before I place it in a bow.
For wyrd must be handled this way, we reap what we sow.
Through Your love, I continuously thrive.
Through Your lessons, I remain alive.
Blessings flow from Your hands to mine.
I have been able to sit at Your table and dine.
Thank You for the nourishment for my soul.
Thank You for Your wisdom during life’s toll.
I remember Your lesson that life has a price.
In the land of ice and snow, the weather is not always nice.
It can be, and often is, extremely brutal.
Like You, Your land is both breathtakingly beautiful and lethal.
As You hunt your prey, I am reminded that death is needed for life.
You teach me to never be wasteful or ever be without a knife.
“Preparation is the key,” You tell me before I walk into the woods.
With Your help, I remember to pack the necessary tools and goods.
You taught me how to make my path easier and to truly appreciate the Holy Powers.
For that, I can never repay You even if I gave You daily poetic showers.
Please continue to teach me how to honor You as I open my heart to You.
Thank You for all You have given me. I praise You and give You my devotion so true.