O is for October

The first Ferris wheel from the 1893 World Col...
The first Ferris wheel from the 1893 World Columbian Exposition in Chicago. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

(First, if you haven’t heard about the Pagan Bundle yet? Apparently it’s going to be the same principle as the Humble Bundle, a selection of ebooks for a single price. They’re just starting out and haven’t listed the products yet, but you can sign up and get an email when it goes live.)

But yes, O is for October. Not the month, the concept.

I talked a little bit last year, in the fall, about Bradbury’s October Country. October is liminality, the space between – between holidays, between seasons, and of course it culminates in Samhain.

October, for me, is the place where you belong by virtue of not belonging anywhere else. It tends to have a feeling of just-passing-through, related to the Carnival. It doesn’t feel permanent.

I’m not sure if liminality can be permanent. Of course there are places that are liminal all the time, like train station, but not many. Most amusement parks are singular. Many places are liminal only on certain days, or certain times of the year.

I wonder sometimes if I can really do this – build a home, build a family. Settle. It’s giving up something in exchange for something else, certainly.

Whatever the result, I’m starting to think it’s worth it.

0 thoughts on “O is for October

  1. October people do build – amusement parks and carnivals and circuses, places where outside may change but the inside is still the same. They retire and raise families (or don’t retire, and raise families anyway). Not all denizens of October are cuckoo-children, raised in other birds’ nests. We’re building a place where the outside doesn’t matter, because what’s inside will last.

  2. Homes are liminal spaces to me–at least cyclically. While there are residents, there are also guests. There are things that break down, things we build back up. There might be window ACs to put in the summer and take out in late fall. Insulation to put over windows, curtains and decor to change with the seasons or the years. The children are ever changing, ever developing little bodies that start out so helpless and tiny, and bloom up like lilies into fine young adults that get restless and leave. No moment with them is ever the same, and each memory is unique. They are all change and chaos, rapid-fire minds that leap into full understanding in odd, disjointed ways in narrow fields of thought like a freeform mosaic built by an uncoordinated artist.

    Settling is just giving your dust a defined place to swirl. It’s nothing more than a foundation in case the storm takes the house. It’s nothing but a way that makes it easier to rebuild what gets torn down, because you have an agreed upon pattern. it’s still a strange and wild adventure, the first time you go into the kitchen at midnight and surprise a mouse, the first time a lightning bug woos your phone, the first time a starling vaults over your roof, the first time you find your son swinging from the stair rail.

    Even our own bodies have cells dying and being renewed. The face you see today may have the same molecules, but not one speck of it is the same as it was 7 years ago. Those things that seem to go on forever just have the slowest rate of decay and renewal. What I cherish about October people is similar to what Amber said: they understand the impermanence of things as they naturally are, and so they prioritize, giving their time and energy to building and keeping those things that are truly important to them.

    The things you are planning are truly important to you, and you will keep them, and find peace and satisfaction in them.

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