Hematoid Quartz And Hot Cats

37867639_297316924347055_2763508256054706176_nI’m very into these Dragons’ Eggs, or Seer Stones, as they’re sometimes known, at the moment. Shaped into ovals and roughly polished, and then with a slice taken off and that side polished to a high sheen, you are supposed to be able to see the future, whilst gazing into the polished side.

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I have quite a collection of these, a recent addition being this lovely Hematoid Quartz egg. I bought a darker one for Alex too… As the name suggests, this is Clear Quartz with inclusions of Hematite. It has a very smooth energy to it as a crystal – the natural grounding properties of Hematite are amplified by the Clear Quartz to help calm your mind, giving you the focus to filter out distractions whilst retaining the information you need to utilise at the right moment.

This is a good stone for students, as it will help bring creativity to your thinking and help you find the simplest solution to most issues. Hematoid Quartz will bring determination and perseverance to boost your willpower. It gives you the genuine desire for peace and harmony in mind, body and spirit and the physical world too.

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Hematoid Quartz is a great stone to use in healing and crystal therapy as it cleanses and organises the chakras, reabsorbing negativity and replacing it with unity and self-worth. As a crystal, Hematoid Quartz is also associated with the healing and calming energy of water.

Water – an always important resource, even more so at the moment in this unexpected heatwave. Obviously, now it’s more important than ever to look after your animals’ welfare, making sure they have plenty of clean, fresh water, somewhere cool and shady for refuge and that they are not stressed or uncomfortable in this hot weather.

Leave dishes of water out for birds, hedgehogs and other wildlife, ensuring it is fresh and changed regularly. We haven’t cut our grass in ages, to make sure there are some cool spots and undergrowth left for the toads and newts and the cats, of course.

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My girls are all short haired, but even so, they’re feeling the heat and I keep a careful check on them. I leave the bedroom blinds drawn so the room is slightly cooler, and when we all retire, the fan is usually running.

I’ve come across some helpful hints, which you may already know, but they bear repeating. Keep some towels in the freezer for a pleasant chill down – you can even buy self-cooling gel mats. My girls have one but they prefer a more direct method of cooling down… lying on the bed while I fan them…

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“I’m waiting….!”

Don’t leave wet food down too long in this heat either – it will very quickly spoil and the last thing anybody needs is an upset tummy…Wiping paws and the inside of ears with a cool damp cloth is also useful. Do NOT shut your animals in a small, enclosed unventilated area – there are still people out there leaving dogs unattended in hot cars and they can’t sweat like we do. Panting is how they cool down and if there is no fresh air coming in, you can imagine how quickly the atmosphere becomes stale and the animal begins to overheat.

Despite the weather warnings, I still see people who think it’s a greta idea to take their dog for a walk at midday – would you take a child out for a barefoot walk in scorching temperatures??

We leave a large plastic bowl of water out on the park for passing thirsty canines…Rant over… but stay safe friends, watch out for your furred and feathered family and our wild friends too.

A Train … And Some Rain.

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I had an interesting day last week. Alex had an audition for an advert, so I went along to keep him company. The casting agency was based in Manchester, so I must admit to a certain curiosity about revisiting my old university stomping ground, especially since I haven’t been back in twenty-something years.

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The day dawned bright and early, a beautiful morning, the sun was shining and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. Alex had efficiently booked the train tickets online, brushing aside my feeble protests about maybe walking… so we boarded the 9.45 am train for Manchester.

It’ll rain, as soon as we get past the Pennines,” I predicted confidently.

Alex clearly didn’t believe me, as we sped through cities and across moors. Trains make me vaguely anxious, but I behaved well enough, and indeed, quite enjoyed myself, as it’s a long time since I’ve been anywhere further north than Asda…

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We alighted in Manchester Oxford Street station, and my usually reasonable sense of direction deserted me. It’s changed a lot as a city, but I still had an anxious feeling as the sky began to cloud over.

We found the casting agency and as Alex began to get ready, I chatted amiably to the receptionist:

Yes, we haven’t had rain for about ten days now!” she chirped happily. I replied darkly:

Oh, just you wait… it knows I’m here…”

And sure enough, just as Alex came out to get changed, it began to rain. We said goodbye, and as my foot hit the street outside it began to rain in earnest, a million tiny slaps of funny-tasting water all across my face… head… body… feet…

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Yep. We’d dressed for summer, light trousers, t-shirts, no coats or jumpers, and b y some bizarre twist I’d forgotten to change out of my gardening shoes, which a re canvas. With a hole in the sole. Of course.

It rained like it meant it. Manchester knew I was there and did its very best to try and drown me. It reached such a point, we had to dive into a nearby shop for Alex to purchase to umbrellas, while I dripped and muttered in the corner like a madwoman. Feet squelching like demented squids, we continued our tour…

I was surprised and saddened to see that my old hall of residence is under heavy repair, perhaps condemned, a wise decision in light of the Grenfell tragedy. The pub I used to drink in had, by contrast, gone completely upmarket.

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I was quite glad to reach the train station, for although we’d enjoyed a pleasant dinner, I was ready to leave. A thriving city, with a great vibe – but not for me. Too many memories.

As soon as we get past Stockport the sun’ll come out!” I prophesied confidently to Alex. And do you know what? It did!

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Mother – Don’t Go!

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It was a beautiful night and I was restless. I couldn’t settle to sleep indoors so I went outside to the garden.

Dimly lit and full of perfume, bats fluttered overhead, moths whirred softly by and with every drifting breeze the petunias and stocks released their scent to float softly on the warm night air.

I fell asleep. And I dreamed:

I saw a young woman. She was beautiful. I looked at her face and in her eyes was all the kindness of the world. Love shone from her skin and water flowed in her hair, the eternal movements of the seas and the patterns of the rivers.

I saw lush forests and grassy plains, alive and full of burgeoning life, shimmering behind her skin. It changed.

The delicate bones of her face filled out, herds of buffalo roamed across the plains now; the rivers and seas teemed with movement, fish, seals, otters, whales and dolphins played and lived. The forests filled with birds and chattering monkeys and the love for all these creatures welled up in her eyes and made her bloom.

She smiled and in her motion humans were made and she loved them, nurtured them, cared for them. Her skin was rich and bloomy, her hair glowed with warmth and being. Then the picture changed again.

Her eyes were worried, unhappy, pained. The lushness of her hair faded to grey, drab and coarse. Across her face and behind her eyes wars and famines raged. Disease and death followed, carving misery in her countenance and sorrow, bleak. People died. And as they died her face grew thin and gaunt, cheekbones like dead branches, till finally, finally burning tiny embers appeared on the plains.

Black holes spread quickly, the ashy edges spreading and charring and killing her vitality. Seas dried up, rivers ran dry and forests decayed. And still they did not stop.

I tried to hold her hand and then I wept as she died.

Healer And Home.

37423459_289080455170702_1767797664176406528_nImagine my delight when Alex and I popped in to see Liz only to find out she had a whole new hoard of wonderful treasures… Look at these golden delights! This is actually Golden Healer Quartz, quite a newly discovered and New Age crystal, with some truly beautiful qualities and metaphysical benefits to match its appearance too.

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I reached for this box of shimmery goodies with an air of desperation so Liz promptly released them into my avaricious grasp…She went on to explain that the golden colour is due to deposits of iron oxide that have grown with the quartz layers as they form.

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They vary in colour obviously, but I was particularly drawn to the one pictured below as it has a clear window right through it and a wonderful cross hatching of iron oxide. As with Clear Quartz, Golden Healer Quartz is a multi-purpose crystal, the uplifting colour and nature of it is said to attract success and boost creativity.

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Again, its golden colouration is associated with the achievement of financial goals, and, like Citrine, it is a crystal of abundance. It has the soft glow and encouraging warmth of the precious metal it’s named for and as such can be used for a lot of positive purposes. It helps you to release self-defeating attitudes – there is light at the end of the tunnel – and forget about unhealthy habits in favour of a positive mental attitude uniting mind, body and spirit.

37378028_289080581837356_8891413546395500544_nThe gentle glow of Golden Healer Quartz helps you to see clearly and maintain your focus on your goals and your faith in yourself that these are achievable, whilst filtering out surrounding distractions. Golden Healer Quartz’s sympathetic and warming vibration gives you the mental strength to move forward after negative events.

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Three of my girls are very home and me orientated… Lily is the original Cat Who Walks By Herself – but the furthest the others will venture is out into the close where we live and three doors over to where my partner’s mother lives. They quite like visiting Grandma… Home is important to them – their safe space, and my heart hurts for the people who put up sad adverts begging for the safe return of their (fur) baby who has wandered further than usual afield.

I am fortunate in that my cats regard me (I hope) as their home and no matter where I am, that they are secure and happy with me. You can pretty much guarantee that within five minutes of me stepping into the garden that three, possibly four – and sometimes even five – cats will appear to watch what I am doing and add comments…

Why are you digging? I thought you used the inside bathroom …”

Here! I’ll help!”

Who are you??”

I planted some marigolds the other day. When I went to check on their progress this morning, I found that “someone” had carefully dug around the roots of the plants so they’d all fallen over…

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“We just come for the food…”

My own early home life was all right, all the usual ups and downs and tensions that go with warring divorcing parents… I went through a period of homelessness when I was older too, so home isn’t always necessarily the house in which you’re living. Thus, as I have grown older myself, the true meaning of home is a cat (or two, or three, or four – not you, you don’t live here!) on your knee or on your bed at night purring you to sleep, and love in your heart always.

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“Just looking – honest!”

On The Love Of Dogs:

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Now. Forgive me for stating the obvious, but as regular readers know, I am primarily a cat person, although I have several canine acquaintances, including a mountainous Dogue De Bordeaux. It’s some years now too since I had my own little dog, but my sister and my mother are both stalwart and faithful dog owners.

I have regarded my mother’s dogs, most particularly her German Shepherds, as sister dogs and daughter dogs, but it wasn’t until an incident the other day that I gained a proper and full appreciation of the true meaning of the love and loyalty of dogs.

Briefly – my mother has two dogs, her German Shepherd called Erin, and a (supposed) lurcher/whippet crossbreed called Rocky. He’s fun and bouncy, hurts like hell when he steps on your toes with giant clawed feet or sends you flying with a casual shoulder barge. I have played the extremely boring game of directing the laser pointer mouse so he can chase it, been on walks with him and saved pieces from my dinner to give him as he has sat gazing soulfully at me whilst gently drooling on my trousers.

I have suffered the indignation of his cold wet nose shoved unexpectedly down my top in friendly greeting and most recently, his bemused examination of my face and throat as I squeak and hoot at him with my laryngitis affected voice. However, what happened the other day touched me most profoundly and moved me – too often we underestimate the power of an animal’s love and emotion, the depth of their feeling for us.

Unfortunately, my eldest son has had some extreme personal issues and my relationship with him has deteriorated to the extent where physical violence was offered, after a lot of shouting between us. Rocky had watched the exchange growing more and more heated and unpleasant and when he raised his fists, the dog pushed himself firmly between us and growled at him. Fiercely and with meaning.

I won’t go into any further details about the argument – it is absolutely no longer my story to tell, but what remained with me was Rocky’s unquestioning defence and obvious love for me in the way he wanted to protect me.

So, in essence, then, I just want to say thank you to all our wonderful, loyal and loving canine friends. Good dogs!

Porcellanite And Prey

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This unassuming little green stone with delicate black etchings has a lovely tactile smoothness to it, so it is no surprise to learn that it is a wonderful cleanser and healer for connective tissues, ligaments, skin and intestines, mirroring everybody’s (well mine at least) wish for smooth and perfect skin, well-oiled tendons and a stomach that behaves itself.

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Perfectly smooth and soft Princess paws… 

Porcellanite feels smooth and serene to hold, the calm green colour giving strength and focus to your thoughts and feelings and how you wish to express them. The little black etchings within the stone act as markers and signposts of encouragement, inspiring and creative.

Speaking of creative… I know cats are inveterate hunters and killers of prey – it’s part of their genetic history and instinctual makeup, but Charlie, Ting and Tooty don’t hunt. Never have done, and I can’t see them starting anytime soon, although Charlie has, once or twice, presented me with a dead moth, and once a tiny live mouse, that I think she thought she could keep as a pet.

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Tooty’s more of a tree-hugger really… 

Like Ting and Tooty, who also lost their mother at an early age, perhaps they missed that essential part of their feline education, and their hunting instinct just wasn’t switched on. They are all keen birdwatchers, though, and Ting seems to have formed quite a close relationship with the fish.

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“Hi Bert, hi George, hi Alfie, hi Maureen, hi Hilda, hi Nemo… “

Not so Lily. Indeed, I’ve never known such a cat for hunting and bringing her prey home. She excelled herself the other morning… I am accustomed to the usual mice – two different species, sometimes live, sometimes dead, sometimes whole, sometimes… not – and the occasional bird… but the other morning…

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Butter wouldn’t… even dare go near her!

I heard her special “meow” and realising that she’d brought a gift in, leapt out of bed and rushed downstairs to take part in our shared hobby of early-morning mousehunt. (I’m actually quite good now.)

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Yep…o.k….I’ll leave you alone…

Lily had vanished. But on the doormat was a very large, very dead rat. You can colour me surprised, impressed, a little scared and rather sad… kind of brownish-purple, like an old bruise, I suppose…

I’ve had rats as pets, and know what gentle and loving creatures they can be, so I gathered up the body and disposed of it in the wild part of the garden, in a little hole. I say little…it was a very large rat, so when the Demon Huntress returned later that morning, I seized her and checked for injuries.

I did, out of courtesy, thank her for the rat, but mentioned I would prefer it not to happen again, only to receive the reply:

But why? You tell us it’s always better to buy in bulk when it comes to cat food!”

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And … Sleep!

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The night started reasonably enough, my mind filled with pleasant images of how to look after your roses, and the modern twist on cottage gardens, thanks to the lovely Monty Don and an hour of “Gardener’s World.”

I cleaned my teeth, spilled the cat water, and got into bed, the sheets freshly changed and smelling of lavender, the room pleasantly cool and dark and I dropped off into a peaceful slumber, for all of about three hours…

Then it started.

My partner came to bed, disturbing Charlie who demonstrated her displeasure by vomiting copiously under the bed. So, I got up and cleaned it up, grovelling about on my hands and knees at 3.30a.m. trying not to retch myself as you really don’t want to be dealing with catsick at that time of morning.

Meanwhile, my partner had got himself tucked into bed, wrinkling the sheets on my side and was snoring merrily away. After about half an hour of sighing heavily and thumping my legs about I lost patience and whisper-shouted: “STOP SNORING!!”

Still asleep, he rolled over and there was blissful silence.

Then I got the phantom itches. Have you ever had those? A dreadful, creeping sensation that leaves you convinced that there is some sort of bug in the bed with you… a crawling, that started in my hair, down my ribcage and finished at my left shin, leaving me itchy and so absolutely certain I had a horde of spiderlings in my pyjamas that I had to get out of bed and go to the bathroom to check that my flowery (not glittery) pyjamas were not actually infested with some kind of alien mite.

They weren’t.

Back to bed. My pyjamas then decided to act like a strait jacket, the top wrapping itself uncomfortably tightly around my chest, while the bottoms rolled up in such an engaging and amusing fashion they ended up as tourniquets around the tops of my thighs.

I gave up and got up, just as dawn’s tender fingers were painting the sky delicate shades of blush pink and apricot. Drawn irresistibly outside I sat down in the garden swing, watching the moths conclude the night’s partying chased by bats – “Come back! I didn’t get your number! Are you on NatureBook…?”

Soothed by the scent of petunias and the gentle trickle of the pond waterfall… I fell asleep.

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Ruin

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And so I find myself walking an unknown yet strangely familiar path – all around me there is a rustling and a fluttering of little birds in the trees and bushes, almost as if they are signposting the way, guiding me.

Along the little lane, surrounded either side by old trees, old country trees, oak, beech, ash and the witch’s own rowan, leaning over me. Along the verges, cow parsley, delicate and as frothily white as vintage lace, ramsons, smelling sharply of garlic and long lush grass, encourages me onwards; my feet responding to some old memory that leads me to an old wooden stile, battered but still sturdy enough for me to cross out of the cool green darkness and into the field beyond.

And somehow what I half-expected wasn’t there. I pick my way across the rough tussocky grass. And as if in a dream, I see it; I am approaching the back of the house, rising in red brick splendour, through the gardens, (the rough remnants, the herbs, the rosemary, the lavender, crushing under my feet and releasing their evocative fragrance) immaculately kept within neat boundaries of shaped box.

I am come home!” and this thought gladdens my heart as I make my way down the old stone steps, old even then, feet wearing away grooves and leaving echoes of lives gone by, and into the kitchen.

Cook’s let the fire go out!”

And feeling the bustling dogs, crowding about my knees, my hounds and her little dogs, my father’s wolfhound – I put my hand out, down by my side and half -expect to feel the soft smooth domed head of my favourite Talbot beneath my touch – heart wrenchingly disappointed yet somehow not surprised when she’s no longer there.

More stairs and into the hallway – grass underfoot now, crunching and dry – and with every hesitant step taken the picture is clearer, dark oak floorboards, rich paintings on the walls, a highly polished side table loaded with fresh flowers – she insisted upon fresh flowers for the house always – and linen fold panelling, gleaming with beeswax hiding the oubliette from long ago – but not now.

The curlicue of banister and wide stairs and a memory of small white hands – how proud she was of their dainty appearance, lavishly beringed, small yet strong enough to wring a dove’s neck, poised prettily on the turn of the carved finial. And a memory came then, of the last day, my father’s voice raised in anger, her mocking laughter – the blood and the pain.

It’s gone.

I open my eyes to the present day and find I am sitting on a heap of old red bricks, worn and unnoticeable amongst the tough old grass. The sun beats down, burning bright from the cloudless blue sky. Somewhere above me I hear swifts screaming and the clear bubbling song of a lonely lark. I put my hands to my face to wipe away the tears that suddenly, inexplicably are flooding my eyes.

Crystals, Community – And Cats, Of Course!

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My CrystalCats community is growing!

Sometimes when I’m talking to someone about crystals I’m asked “Do any of them not work well together, or cancel each other out?” A good, relevant question which I always try to answer honestly, on the basis of my own personal experience if necessary.

The whole range of crystals with which we have been blessed by Mother Earth can be directed to help with a particular ailment or emotion – rather like asking a plumber to fix a burst pipe and a counsellor for relationship advice. Everybody has their allotted role to fill within the community, providing cohesion, continuity and a sense of belonging.

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Ting and Lily… sweetly sleeping!

This is how I’ve found it works with crystals. For example, although Indigo Gabbro (also known as Mystic Merlinite) is a beautiful crystal with its sheen of Pyrite, it does make me over-emotional (no surprises there… just as long as it doesn’t give me flu…) so it needs to be balanced with some sort of Jasper, possibly red, for its grounding and clarifying properties. And also, one of my stock replies is that when choosing a crystal to work for you, there is no right or wrong – it is completely a matter of personal taste, trying the various crystals and their properties out.

Obviously as anyone with a little bit of crystal knowledge can give you basic guidelines – a crystal starter kit if you will – like Citrine for happiness and good fortune, Amethyst to ward off negativity and clear Quartz to amplify and enhance… but it is only through experimentation and experience as you build your own little crystal family that you find out what suits you best.

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Sister Scrap!

You learn to read your own body’s energies and feel what you need. If I am feeling anxious then I reach for the comfort of Smoky Quartz or Black Tourmaline. Rose Quartz – even though I don’t always carry my first original piece – is generally on me in jewellery, or in my handbag. I seem to be drawn to the green or clear crystals mostly, with the occasional pink or sparkly one thrown in because – well, just because.

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Old Faithful – Lotus Jasper

They provide balance, support and comfort – a sense of wholeness and unity, not unlike the whole ethos of the LizianEvents community. Alex and I have known Liz and Ian, the people behind this community for quite a few years now, but it is only really recently that I have become aware of and really understood the concept of “Celebrate Life – Become A Well Being”, the community manifesto if you like.

Liz and Ian’s carefully planned and thoughtfully publicised events are a pleasure to attend. The exhibitors have little crossover in their products, be it crystals, essential oils, reiki therapists or psychics, a logical decision designed to benefit and balance everyone. The talks and workshops are interesting and informative – I could go on and on, really, but please do go and have a look at LizianEvents News. I may sound biased but what never ceases to please me is the reality of the growing community, a wonderful network for the 21st century of people who want to explore alternative ways to improve both physical and mental health. Welcoming and friendly – if you’re ever in the area when a show is on I would recommend visiting.

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Tooty … getting in touch with her inner panther

I promised cats… didn’t I… and although cats and community are two words you don’t really associate with one another, living in a multi-cat household I see it in action every day. Ting doesn’t like Tinkerbell, our nearest neighbour cat, and will chase her unmercifully yet she flirts outrageously with the ugly black tom from across the park. Big Ears from the house opposite is allowed to come as far as the garden gate – but no further, if Charlie is on duty. All of these cats, however, will unite against the weird looking ginger cat that’s just moved in further up the street.

So even though all these cats – my girls included – are very different personalities, they all have their own little role to fill within the cat community of our street. And as I get older, I realise the importance of community and beyond that – friendship.

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Charlie says: “Celebrate Life – Become A Well Being!”

Maiden, Man, Death.

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She walked with grace in her step and the scent of summer in her hair. As she moved, the folds of her dress shimmered with the rainbows of rivers and moths and butterflies fluttered from it as she flowed along Mother Earth’s ways.

Trees leaned confidingly towards her and she touched them as she passed, with love and care so they blossomed. All the golds of this good earth glowed in her hair, buttercups and daffodils, ripe barley and goldfinches.

When she lay down to rest, the trees and grass enfolded her lovingly, protectively and wild deer showed their trust by lying down beside her. Every morning when she awoke she gave thanks to the Universe and Mother Earth for their gifts and generosity and as she sang her gratitude the little birds stopped to listen.

Her eyes were the clear blue of a summer sky, filled with gentle warmth for every living creature; no snake or spider or scorpion held fear for her as they were all Mother Earth’s children.

Indeed, scorpions curled their tails away to avoid stinging her delicate bare feet and snakes curled themselves in her hair and around her wrists, living coils of iridescent jewellery. The spiders spun silk to mend her dress and as she danced the soft breezes were her partner. Tiny white flowers grew in her wake as she walked.

He stunk. Chemically bad, industrially corrupted. He smiled and fawned, ingratiating, yet grubby in mind and spirit. He strode through life with every appearance of confidence and intelligence; yet inside, cancerous doubt and invasive fear lived.

He searched. He looked for something to fill the dark void inside him – he who had seen Hell sought to bring others to him and his understanding, baiting traps with soft words and gifts, anything to catch an offering for the gnawing hunger inside him.

Others slid uneasy from the clawing need, sensing with ancient animal instinct the corrosive burn of his interest. He dressed with care yet somehow always appeared slightly dirty round the edges, fingers stained and sulphurous, fingernails rimmed with grime that reflected his most secret desires.

Assuming familiarity with those around him gave him the courage. The darkness grew. And then he saw her and the fire burned higher and brighter till it threatened to consume him completely and he knew that only one thing could quench it.

She smelt him before she saw him. The dark smoke of his spirit invaded her senses, yet with her belief in the ultimate goodness of every living being, she turned to face him.

He smiled, invitingly, and on his breath she smelled her death. Fear rose in her throat and she turned to run, to fly, to seek refuge among kindness and understanding. He followed. He crept along behind her on slug-soft feet and she felt every step, his starving eyes on her back like poisoned knives, and the want, the terrible Want.

The darkness struck and took her down – gently, oh so gently, he reached out and clasped her throat, rejoicing as he felt the frantic pulse fluttering like a little bird.

And then he crushed it.

Ground out the beat in her throat like a miserly hand-rolled cigarette. She gasped and struggled as his stench overwhelmed her, but the Goddess was kind and she passed quickly, her life spark ascending as swiftly as a little bird, leaving behind only a faint sweet smell, like incense, and a tiny white flower..

Him? Mother Earth took him, for killing one of hers, drawing him painfully through a narrow chasm in the ground, cracking bones and squeezing flesh till all that was left was a yellow puddle, smelling faintly of urine and nicotine.

Father Sun came out and shone, burning, until even that was gone. And the Earth was cleansed.