Monday, October 30, 2006

SD Postmortem -- Altars

As always, the altars were beautiful. The Quarter altars were in different places than they were last year; guess someone used a compass.

Teri Compost, Mallory and others erected their usual glorious North altar in memory of all our Beloved Dead but specially dedicated to the woman who created the original North altars, Judy Foster. I had brought my big copper pentacle made by Yuri Toropov years ago, and its stand. This pentacle has featured in many a SD North altar.

I was perplexed to see one with a big Latin cross or crux ordinaria on it until I saw upon closer viewing that it was an altar in memory of those who've died crossing the U.S.-Mexican border.

Last year saw the first altar to the unborn and newborn deaths: miscarriages, stillbirths, abortions, etc. Suzanne Pullen initiated the practice of having such an altar last year, and boy! is it ever important! So many women were moved by it last year that it had to have its own on-duty priestess. I know it has been an important part of her own healing. This year she spoke a "Blessing of the Babies, alive and dead."

Ivory Fly and friends did another Fire/South altar this year. Last year Ann Flowers from England made herself invisible and controlled the magic technology that made smoke issue from the volcano on that altar.

The only problem with the altars, all of them, is one that can, and hopefully will, be remedied in the future. That's one of lighting. No candles or other open flames are permitted in the building. Many altars were strung with garlands of holiday lights in different colors, but they didn't offer sufficient illumination to make the altars really stand out. I hope future altar builders will consider more lights and maybe using those cool new battery-operated votives and tea-lights.

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