The responsibilities of family lead me to miss the rite for Lughnasadh with Three Cranes this year, so I found myself in the position of solitary Druid for my first High Day since becoming a Druid. After working with the COoR for a few months, this was not as difficult a task as I thought it would be. There are a few minor details I missed, because I tried to do it all from memory, but other than that it went very well.
I gathered together my materials and did my Rite outside by my fire pit. I found enough sticks and such around the yard to have a small fire—but big enough for my purposes. I set up an altar with a pitcher and a chalice for the Waters of Life, three candles for the Kindred. My wand, and a bowl of water for the Well.
After grounding and centering, I stated my purposes. I offered dried lavender to Garanus (in the fire) and opened the gates. I offered steel cut oats to the Earth Mother. I read a poem about the Kindred and lit a candle for each in turn. Then I offered sticks of a special type of incense to the fire, one for each Kindred.
The main deities of my rite were Lugh, Rosmerta, and Tailtiu. I read a poem written by MJD from Three Cranes about the Marriage of Lugus to Rosmerta. I also told a story that I improvised about Tailtiu clearing the land and sacrificing herself for the people—just as a King does. Like mother, like son, eh? I also offered a shot of Wild Turkey to the flame—which was quite dramatic since it had died down considerably during the first part of the rite.
Omens. Beautiful. The first was Laguz. Offering accepted. The second was Eihwaz, and the third was Perthro (again). The message I received is one of moving forward but slowly to build a solid foundation that enhances life with change, not causes constant turmoil and chaos (though occasional chaos can sometimes work in your favor). The primary layers must be strong and sturdy in order for the rest of the structure to be solid and lasting. It also seems I am on the right path.
I performed the return flow for the Waters of Life and drank a measure that I poured into my chalice. This is not something I do during daily devotionals, so I used a scripted piece I found as a reference.
I dismissed the Kindred and closed the gates. The rite was ended!
A few notes: I did not use much music. I was outside by myself at 11:00 at night, and the mosquitoes were terrible. I also did not use a full two powers meditation because the mosquitoes were too distracting. Instead, I used an old breathing pattern technique I have used for years to calm and center in preparation for a performance—which is a lot like being DIC. There is a lot to do in a ritual for a high day. I definitely could have used at least one other person to assist with tending the fire and making the offerings readily available. I had to turn on the flashlight to find things several times! All in all, I am pleased with this Rite. I have learned a few things that will help the next time I have to do a solitary high day—which I am sure will happen. Being the only Druid in a family of five can be difficult, but I know that the gods don’t care where I am when I call to them—only that I call.