The Elysium Fields
“Into the West” is a common phrase heard among those of Celtic Hearth when referring to a journey to the Summerlands, the green fields of the afterlife, but this is not only a Celtic concept. Homer describes a plain where life is easiest for men, for there is no snow or heavy storm, and Okeanus blesses them with the West Wind that it may be cooling to those who live there. Hesiod refers to an Isle of the Blessed on the Western Edge of the Earth where admission is given to those chosen by the Gods, the righteous and heroic among the folk who would live a blessed and happy life, indulging in those things that brought them joy in their years on Earth. These Isles in the West, these Isles of the Blest, these Plains of paradise, are known as the Elysium Fields, and it is here that all Hellenes look to call their eternal home. Here, where the soft precipitate wind falls upon rich soils, continually supporting fruits, vegetables and grains beyond measure. Here, where long, lazy days are followed by cool, comfortable nights. Here, where the tales and songs of the Bards fill halls of fellowship and mirth for all time.
Our hearts’ desire is for our loved ones to be in just such a place, and as we honor them tonight, this time when the veil thins enough for our voices to freely echo through their Halls, let us call out the names of our clans, our tribes, our families. Let us remember the threads that connect us and weave them together as one folk honoring one mighty Kindred: The Ancestors.
We have blessed this Water and infused it with the gifts of the Kindreds, drawing down their blessings that we may be infused with their love in return for our gifts. As we offer this Water to the Fruit of the Vine, we share these Blessings with Those who have gone before us in Unity, in honor and with love. (Pour Waters of Life into Bowl of Wine, preferably red)
And now, Children of Earth, raise your voices with ours and sing your memories into these Waters. Lift your song from your heart that we, too, may add of our essence to these Waters gifted from the Kindreds. (Tone into the Unity Waters)
With reverence and passion, let us invite our houses to accept these gifts as a part of the Community Family of Three Cranes Grove and The Folk of Central Ohio.
(Beginning with a couple well-placed grove members, have each participant give the last names from their family tree, pouring a libation from the bowl over the Omphalos for each person. Single Drumbeat plays throughout. Offer final amount to the collective Ancestors of the Community)
Sing: Mothers and Fathers of Old