Birch Wisdom for Winter Solstice

birch bark

The Shining Tree is so loved…especially in the darkened deep of Winter!  For this Winter Solstice, some important details about Birch, and then a poem: 

 

The Birch tree is a Tree of Life for many cold climate Peoples across North America and Eurasia, including Siberia, where the word “shaman” comes from.  Birch is also the Rune Berkana.

Birch bark or birchbark is the bark of several Eurasian and North American birch trees of the genus Betula.

The strong and water-resistant cardboard-like bark can be easily cut, bent, and sewn, which made it a valuable building, crafting, and writing material, since pre-historic times. Even today birch bark remains a popular type of wood for various handicrafts and arts.

Birch bark also contains substances of medicinal and chemical interest. Some of those products (such as betulin) also have fungicidal properties that help preserve bark artifacts, as well as food preserved in bark containers.

Birch bark was a valuable construction material in any part of the world where birch trees were available. Containers like wrappings, bags, baskets, boxes, or quivers were made by most societies well before pottery was invented. Other uses include:

Birch bark also makes an outstanding tinder, as the inner layers will stay dry even through heavy rainstorms. To render birch bark useless as tinder, it must be soaked for an extended period of time.

from Wikipedia.

 

The Rune Berkana represents:  

Renewal, regeneration, purification, healing, and recovery. It is the rune of the family and the home, and represents the enjoyment of sexual relations, fertility, and birth. Birth in this context can be literal or symbolic, such as the successful start of any new idea or enterprise.  A symbol of new beginnings, regeneration and new growth. However, patience is required to see the result, just as a sapling takes time to grow into a mature tree.

 

DSC01186smallQuynn Red Mountain of Earth Web Media traveled two summers in a row to the far northern corner of Washington state to gather bark from downed Birch trees.  She cut, stripped and processed pieces of bark, and then layed them flat under her futon as she drove back to the southern desert of Arizona.

 

Below is a poem that Quynn wrote in 2010 while surrounded by beautiful Birch trees.  Inspired by the soft, leathery sexy feel of her inner bark, here is a poetic tale about the sacred Birch Goddess~

 

 

 

In the north of the land
and the light of the dark
there lives a shining tree.
 
She has always been a Goddess of the erotic.
Young skin smooth
old skin strong
inner skin beautiful.
 
Bright white with glistening green hair
such is the summertime maiden.
In the white sleepy winter, she shines even more.
 
As she deepens her roots
she finds her power in the dance.
Oh how she loves to gently sway
with a beautiful breeze,
and give it a swing with a burly strong storm.
 
Then, in the fullness of her trunk,
she feels a shift-
During one of her many romps
with Old Man Weather,
the quaking and rocking and wetness overtakes her,
and she falls to the ground,
to bask in the afterglow and take a much needed nap.
 
As her dream self dances,
the seasons revolve,
and her strong, supple skin slowly pulls away from her softening core.
She lays there, where she fell,
softening.
 
When a human with an open heart recognizes her for what she has become,
she gives of her most sensual inner self,
and bares her soft core to the world.
 
She chooses this,
to share her perfect skin,
helpful in so many ways,
with anyone who knows how to talk nicely to her.
In her giving, she lives on in beauty.

Written by Quynn Red Mountain – summer 2010 NE Washington state
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