Wednesday, June 16, 2010
The Red Bull and the Morrigan
I see a huge red bull, with long silky hair. I know that he is the focus of an ancient battle.
I see the warriors of two rival armies clashing together - kilted men swinging killing irons.
Riding through the field of battle comes an immense dark figure, standing proudly erect in a chariot. She is three women in one. Their bodies are joined. Her chariot is not drawn by horses but races forward, powered by the intention of the War Goddess. Its great wheels are armed with scything blades, that mow down the fighting men like tall grass.
As the bodies of the slain lie in heaps on the ground, the Morrigan divides into three huge black birds. They soar into the air, then swoop down on the fallen, picking out the eyes, stripping the flesh from the bones. They are separating what rots from what endures.
When their work is done, they come together and the Goddess shows herself as a single being - a ripe, naked woman wearing deer antlers.
In this form, she rises above the earth. She glides at tremendous speed from the site of the battle to a mountain whose name is Slievnamun. She shows herself here in yet another form - as a lovely young woman who sits above a natural cauldron, a bubbling spring among the rocks. Here and only here (I am informed) can the dread Morrigan be approached in beneficent human form.
from a dawn vision during a weekend of Active Dreaming and mythic drama on Gore Mountain.
Graphic: Louis le Brocquy, The Morrígan, 1969, lithograph. Illustration for Thomas Kinsella's translation of The Táin.