The sorcerous among you will appreciate this.
I was off in the woods with the hiking group from school last week (during the full moon, you’ll remember), and the little girl in the group gets bored, bends over a sapling, back and forth, back and forth — snaps it off, about half a foot above the ground. The green wood splinters, and the sapling falls across the trail. I come up, and discover ruined tree. Have to remove it from the path — no knife, no saw. So… I look around, and finding a sharp stone, cut it down with said stone. I use the same sharp stone to trim the crown off, and to scrape the bark off.
I now have a 6-foot long staff, with the raw wood cut down by a virgin, trimmed by a bard, and all without being touched by metal. This is too good to pass up. As a potential symbolic staff, it has purity, storytelling, and is associated with the deep past. Now, I take my raw staff down to the school maintenance shop, where I borrow a saw to trim the nasty sharp bits off. This represents the importance in magic of asking for the things you want, and then receiving them.
I cut some of the sharp bits off, and then the school’s master carpenter offered his assistance; this represents the universe smoothing your way when you know your purpose. He trimmed the knots a bit, and trimmed the ends. One of the things that emerged from this is a knot shaped very much like an eye of Horus; thus representing secret wisdom revealed.
Then he provided me with three grades of sand paper, to do the finishing myself; this represents the process of going deeper and deeper into the matrix of our will, and also three levels of initiation, common in so many of our magical traditions. Finally, he suggested coating the ends of the staff with wax, to prevent the staff from cracking; also it acts to seal the sap (or wisdom, if you will) into the staff; doing this represents preservation of knowledge and the past.
I also looked up the kind of wood it is; it’s a beech, associated with ancestors, the wisdom of the past, and ancient truths.
I’m not sure what the next step or three will be; I’m pondering. Your thoughts would be much appreciated.