Monday, April 26, 2010

To the Deer of the Mountain


Gore Mountain, New York
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Over the past weekend, I shared extraordinary experiences of healing and transformation with a group of frequent flyers on a mountain in the Adirondacks where I have been leading very special gatherings in the spring and fall over fourteen years. This is a place where the Deer energy is very strong. In our very first gathering, as described in my book Dreamgates, the Deer spirit became available for healing for a woman who had been told she had an incurable disease. What unfolded last weekend was even more remarkable and I hope to write about it at the right time.
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At the beginning and at the end of our retreat, in a circle of joined hands and streaming energy, I found myself impelled to recite a poem that I wrote many years ago to celebrate the Deer of this mountain. I want to share this now:
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To the Deer of the Mountain
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Deepheart, mountain guardian
who harries the hunter
and knows what belongs to us
and what does not,
give us your speed,
your ability to read the land,
to see what is behind us and around us.
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May we grow with the seasons
into your branching wisdom
putting up antlers as taproots into the sky
to draw down the power of heaven,
reaching into the wounded places
to heal and make whole,
walking as living candelabra,
crowned with light,
crowning each other with light.

11 comments:

rosslyn said...

I just saw the post as my dog Buddy wanted outside. A deer was nearby likely sniffing around my bedding plants. The deer energy is strong here in Kansas and was also in Ca. where I took a workshop with you. You took out the bear claw at that time and I am a bear woman.

Justin Patrick Moore said...

One of the things I've been concerned with the past few months is the function of poetry: how it should be functional in the life of the poet and in the community. This is a clear example, and perhaps also of the "extempore incantation" you wrote of in reply to my comment on your last post.

Nancy said...

I am so honored to be part of this special circle -- this past weekend was my 17th time in a row, and I've already blocked off the dates for November. I saw shadowy people standing outside our circle many times, maybe American Indians in native garb, silently supporting us. Thanks for all you do and give.
Nancy

Alla said...

I couldn't make it this time to the mountain. I'll intend it for the next time. For now I am eagerly waiting for your next post. :-)

As for Justin's pondering on the function of poetry for the poet and the community, the question itself kind of surprised me. Let me just quote one of the most famous poems by Alexander Pushkin; we had to learn it by heart at middle school - I'm not sure that this is the very best translation; I found it on the web. The rhythm of the poem is changed and now its pace seems hastier, kind of less mythical, but it definitely gives the right idea:

The Prophet

With fainting soul athirst for Grace,
I wandered in a desert place,
And at the crossing of the ways
I saw a sixfold Seraph blaze;
He touched mine eyes with fingers light
As sleep that cometh in the night:
And like a frightened eagle's eyes,
They opened wide with prophecies.
He touched mine ears, and they were drowned
With tumult and a roaring sound:
I heard convulsion in the sky,
And flight of angel hosts on high,
And beasts that move beneath the sea,
And the sap creeping in the tree.
And bending to my mouth he wrung
From out of it my sinful tongue,
And all its lies and idle rust,
And 'twixt my lips a-perishing
A subtle serpent's fork├Ęd sting
With right hand wet with blood he thrust.
And with his sword my breast he cleft,
My quaking heart thereout he reft,
And in the yawning of my breast
A coal of living fire he pressed.
Then in the desert I lay dead,
And God called unto me and said:
"Arise, and let My voice be heard,
Charged with My will go forth and span
The land and sea, and let My word
Lay waste with fire the heart of man."

It's impossible to separate poetry from a poet. It is his very soul crying and smiling... How could one define its functionality?.. :-)

Alla said...

A little post scriptum: after having read all those Egyptian things I'm dealing with right now, the shape of the head and the neck of the deer in the picture associated in my mind with the ankh. I understand, that it is very conditional, but... :-)

Don said...

Some years ago my youngest son went deer hunting. In a remote meadow he encountered a large stag, a trophy hunter’s dream. The stag saw my son. Instead of bounding away, it walked over to him. He lowered his head and just stood there. My son did not shoot. He could not bear to. He told me he sensed a feeling of friendship. He has never been deer hunting since.

Since then he has been able to approach deer and elk more easily than most people do. He has taken some magnificent photos of deer and elk.

I take wildlife photos, too. I am a vegetarian. I do not know if that makes any difference, but deer seem to be less afraid of me than they are of most people. One time when I was photographing some local deer a small, forked-horn, buck walked up to me. It was maybe twenty feet away. I sensed a feeling of friendship. And I took some nice pictures.

I have tried to induce healing in some people but it has not come about. Last spring a friend of mine died of brain cancer. Right now a relative has prostate cancer. And there are others who need healing.

In the dream forum, in February 2009, I posted a dream about acquiring a drum. In September I went to a powwow in a ritual attempt to honor that dream. It was not my intention to acquire another drum, but I did purchase one. I take my new drum up on a nearby butte and try to induce healings. I have seen deer standing close by watching me. And I have sensed the presence of spirits. But the healing I sought has not taken place. (I hope to post the story of this ritual in a future dream forum.)

I would like very much to learn healing skills. I need to learn them.

Your poem reaches me deeply. Not only do I like poetry, but I appreciate the message in your poem. It reads like a prayer. I like that.

Thank you.

Robert Moss said...

Rosslyn - Good to hear from you. While the Deer energy was central to our work of healing last weekend, we always call in the Bear. And synchronistically, while you were posting I was reviewing an old Scandinavian story of the Bear for the blog essay that folows this one.

Robert Moss said...

Nancy - Yes, you were not alone in perceiving the presences that come to support our work on the magic mountain. Grand to have you in our circle.

Robert Moss said...

Alla - Thanks for the Pushkin. The limitations of the translation make me wish to be able to read and recite Pushkin in the original.

I see your point about the resemblance betweern the shape of the deer in the photo and the ankh, the Egyptian symbol of life. The link goes deeper, since the Deer embodies the mystery and possibility of regeneration. The antlers fall and grow back, larger than before...

Robert Moss said...

Don - Thanks so much for sharing your story of your son and the stag, and the depth of your own connection. When I was first on Gore Mountain, and experienced the power of the Deer in healing there, I heard the story of a magnificent stag who had induced three hard-boiled hunters to lay down their rifles when they looked into his deep eyes.

Before I first convened a healing cirle, I asked for guidanee on what is involved in true healing. I was told two things that are indelible for me: (1) "Let the god (aka healing power) heal through you." (2) "The healing comes through the wound."

gabbyjung said...

I am blessed and hornord to be there. I have been at Gore Mt. many times and witnessed many magical things were unfolding but this time, I felt like the door of dreams, spirit world was open wide and the light of love and support were pouring on us.
My healing jouney is on the way and I feel like it is already half way through.
I will keep continuing journey on "The Deer" who offered me a "New Life".
Thank you Robert to create this Magic Place for us.
My next Fall Gore retreat will be 'Celebrating Perfect' health!