Thursday, 16 February 2012


Samhain I - Vandring by *GothicNarcissusVandrer ensom på ukjente stier,
Skumringen senker seg.
Roper, venter - stillheten tier,
Skumringen senker seg.

Vakker sang langt av lei,
Myr kledd slette I skogen.
Tåkeslor viser vei,
Myr kledd slette I skogen.

Allverdens I tåkedisen:
Kom søster, kom med oss.’
Kaldt, kaldt I kvelds brisen;
Kom søster, kom med oss.’

Alvekongen tar meg I favn,
Høye trør kaster skygge.
Glemt er mitt menneske savn,
Høye trør kaster skygge
[ Vandring - The 3rd And The Mortal ]

Samhain II - Harvest by *GothicNarcissusA frail figure dressed in a cape
Wandering with measured steps,
Haunted by derisive words.

They want to capture the ogress
Wandering aimlessly
Finding pebbles on the ground.
Picking leaves from from an oaktree,
Stalks make rents in green sails.
Have some candy’, she says.
[ Harvest - The 3rd And The Mortal ]

Samhain III - The Witch In Me by *GothicNarcissusDans la forêt, si noire que la nuit peut être respirée...

Through the lucid eyes of witches you’ll see
The things that man can’t see anymore:
That the origin of life still lives in every tree
And in the witchcraft lies the source of all the lore.

Praise the seasons, praise the night.
These witches teach me how to see.
This initiation enlarged my sight:
Now I found the witch in me
[ The Witch In Me - Autumn ]

Disclaimer: I may guess perhaps these are not the colours most of you associate with Samhain, but in Mediterranean Italy weather is rather warm until the beginning of November, so by Samhain woods are still green.
I still hold this series particularly dear even after years. I think this was my first serious attempt to tell a story through a sequence of photographs, even though there isn’t an actual plot and it’s more like a series of “stolen moments” of a witch celebrating Samhain in a shrine in the woods. Looking back, I don’t know if the narration works so well, as I feel there is some sort of gap between the first and second photo, but it’s a nice experiment nevertheless.
I really love the overall mood of this series. I think it’s best showcased by the second photo and the related song: sad and lonely. It’s an intimate, solitary celebration in a small and poor shine held by a lonely aging witch. No big bonfires, no dances: just a spare offer to the forest spirits, all she could gather, given quickly and secretly before dusk so nobody will notice. I don’t really know why she’s alone and sad: maybe she’s the last surviving member of her coven and celebrating reminds her of her lost sisters, and she’s held in contempt by her fellow villagers because of her “weird” habits so she’s better not to drag attention to her small ritual. Still, I think she’s not a bitter or resentful woman, she’s just melancholic and kind of sweet. She still hears the calling of the nature’s spirits and wants to honour them, but everything got kind of sad for her.
(Ok, great, I’ve kind of realised I created a character that’s a mystery even for me.)
Each of these three photos is somehow special to me for different reasons: Vandring, despite being the least successful of the three (and also the odd one out), has that motion of the skirt which I really love; Harvest is very sad, I can’t quite describe either the sensation I get from the song, those I had while shoting or those I get while looking at it; finally, in The Witch In Me my mother looks simply stunning, her eyes look so ancient, like bearing all the wisdom in the world, like a real Witch.
I have to say that much of the “magic” comes not only from the location and my mother’s modelling, but also from her outfit. She brought that lace shawl along just in case, and it ended up being what made the difference, the perfect completion to her expressivity.

I’m glad that the reissue of this series proved successful, as I just find it special and am glad it could reach more people than it did years ago. I just feel a bit silly because I feel my heart swell and my eyes a bit teary whenever I look at it.
Yeah, I know I’m weird.

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