It’s the autumn equinox here, and you can really feel the energy of the season settling in. The leaves of the trees are changing their colours, the rain has begun to drizzle more heavily and the sun seems to lazily show his face in the mornings. For the Little Witch, this heralds the most atmospheric of times, the cozy and dreamy Autumn, to begin relishing and enjoying all the hard work of the last year. It is the time for the last of the harvests, and if you’ve been noticing the plants and growth around you, you’ll notice that most of the fruits are either all gone or just about ready to be.
Magickally this season is about the seeds carefully grown and tended over the last year of work to their fruition. It’s the final product of all our labours and work over the last year, and whilst for some it is the end of the work, if you think about the way in which fruit holds the seed for the next cycle of growth, this time similarly holds the potential for the next level of development.
For the Little Witch, the season of autumn is all about the element of air. Its in the building autumn winds that carry leaf and seed far, in the way you can see your breath on crisp mornings and the way we prepare ourselves for the coming winter, the season of earth, root and bone.
During this autumn equinox, I have found myself taking to foraging for fruits and seeds that I’m drawn to in my adventures across London town. Each time something is picked, I make a prayer of gratitude for all the things I brought into manifestation this year, and set an intention for something I would like to start working on over the next course. This is the magic of fruit and seed. Setting intention. Starting the astral blueprint. Seeking inspiration, breath and epiphany.
After collecting all these mismatching tid-bits however, I found myself with pockets full of herbal derbals, unsure of what to make with them. And after enjoying some lovely fennel seed and dill tequila I had made earlier in the year, it popped into my head;
Last Harvest Incense
I would make a Kyphi style incense from all the tid-bit’s I had collected that could further the magic of gratitude for growth and development and setting intention for the next phase. Kyphi style incense is usually small bricks or pills of incense made from macerated aromatic herbal matter, dried fruits, gums and resins in wine. I like to begin tidying up my dispensary and stores around this time, and this method are a great way for using up all the bits I don’t want to throw away. The following recipe is a loose guideline to inspire you to find your own blends and recipes you like.
Firstly I break down and grind up all the herbal matter individually, and then separate them into two groups, the dry group (dried herbs and resins/gums) and the wet group (fresh herbs, fruits and oils). The dry group is then blended together and made into a paste with honey. The wet group is also mixed, but then further wetted with wine, mead or another fortified alcohol (you want to use something that is thick and syrupy). Each group is then left to mellow in air tight containers for a week, before the dry is mixed into the wet, and then left to mellow and mature for a further few weeks. After this you can then shape the mixture into bricks or pills, and then leave to dry. Once they are dry, they usually don’t crumble and are ready to be burned on charcoal. This type of incense, because it contains oils, sugars and alcohol has an extremely long shelf life, and if once dried is stored in an airtight container, will only get more divine and aromatically orgasmic with age.
During the whole process, which usually takes a moon cycle, I like to continually reinforce the intentions of gratitude and inspiration for the past and future years. Give it a go, and let us know what recipes, blends and mixes you come up with!
By Little Witch Kris