Rhiannon by Caroline Gully Lir

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Rhiannon


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Rhiannon's story is celebrated at Beltaine, the May Day festival of love and fertility, placed in the south east aspect of the wheel. When all around the earth is bursting into life and thoughts turn to love.

Like all the Goddesses on the Wheel, She is whole and complete within Herself. She is Maiden, Lover, Mother, and Crone. At Beltaine we celebrate Her as the Lover, although this is by no means all of Her story, which can be read on many levels.

We pick up Her story as Lord Pwyll is resting, with His men on a magical hillside. Rhiannon, on Her white mare (I like to think naked, like Lady Godiva!) rides slowly past. Lord Pwyll is so taken with Her supreme beauty that he sends one of His men to catch up with her. The man finds this impossible, so He sends another man, but, although Rhiannon still seems to moving slowly, he cannot reach Her. Eventually Lord Pywll gives chase Himself, but even on His best steed fares no better, He exhausts Himself and His Horse, giving up He cries "Lady, Please, stop for the one you love the best!"...well of course She stops, and when he catches up, Rhiannon tells Him "It would have been better for your horse had you asked me sooner!" Rhiannon goes on to explain that She has chosen Him for Her husband. Lord Pwyll is of course overwhelmed and overjoyed!

This is the point in the story that is portrayed here. Rhiannon, Sovereign, Fairie Queen, has dismounted and waits by Her sacred hawthorn trees, surrounded by Her magical birds, with the gift of an Avalonian Apple to give Her chosen suitor.

Behind Her is Milk Hill, upon which Adams Grave, a long barrow, forms the nipple of this breast shaped mound. Below, on the slope of the hill is carved a white horse. Beyond this hill are the Avebury Temple, Silbury Hill and West Kennet Long Barrow.

Rhiannon is a Goddess who loves where She chooses. She is free and in Her power. She is an initiator, the wild horse Goddess, instinctual and untameable.

Rhainnon's animals are the white mare, song birds and doves. Her tree is the hawthorn and her symbols are the comb and mirror. Her colour is red.

With head garlands of Hawthorn blossom, bluebells, lilac and early spring flowers we call to Rhiannon, Goddess of Love, to surround us with Her passion, to heal our sexual wounding and teach us to reclaim our bodies as expressions of love...that we may love freely and fully.