Knitting is, IMHO, one of the easiest and most manifest ways to do magic. I take yarn, pointed sticks, a pattern, and my intent and I create something manifest — a shawl, a sweater, a scarf, a cowl, a cap — that will keep someone warm and embody my magical intent. Son goes running in the Winter morning cold, wearing a cap that I knit for him. Knit into that cap is warmth, protection, inspiration for his job as a thinker, researcher, and writer, good health, determination. A friend’s new baby wears mittens that I made. Knit into those mittens is a spell that will make those baby hands into the powerful hands of a priestess when she grows up. An Occupier wears a cap that I’ve knitted. That cap contains protection against the elements, against a policeman’s cudgel, against negative ideas. And my magic extends out into the world, wrapped warm around my family and friends, wrapped protectively around those I support.
This weekend, I had to spend a lot more time at work than I’d hoped. I came home late this afternoon and took out my bag of knitting projects. As every knitter knows, there come a point in every project knows as: WEAVING IN THE ENDS. In a lot of ways, this is the boring part. You’ve already finished the knitting. Now it’s just time to stitch pieces together and to hide the loose ends of yarn. The more complicated and colorful the knitted piece is, the more loose ends that there are to weave in. For this Yule, I’ve made 8 cowls for dear male friends and family members and two caps/headbands for the women in my family. And I’ve finished a few more caps for Occupiers. So I had a lot of ends to weave in.
Weaving in the ends is one of those tasks that I always put off but that (just like polishing silver, weeding the front cottage gardens, and Bluebooking), once I get started on, I really enjoy. Somehow, today, it seemed perfect for late-late-late Autumn introspection. This is the time of year for indoor work, for contemplative work, for work that helps us to consider what we need to weave in and what we need to cut away.
And, then, I just worked.
I just wove yarn through stitches, binding and making secure the work that I’d done. My attention became completely focused upon those lovely little knots that knitting makes, those knots that mimic and embody the way that magic weaves together the Web of All into purposeful patterns. It’s almost trance-inducing, this business of stitching yarn through stitches, of making a cap or cowl or other creation secure, of putting the final knot in my magic.
We’re deep into the dark of the year. May you, too, find good work that grounds you into this season.
What does it for you?