17 March 2017
Art and Design, Makery, Philosophy, Poetry, tai chi
amazon, books, ebooks, hymns, odes, poems, poetry, publishing, tai chi poem
I’m pleased to report that Festae, a book of poetry with hymns to deities from the Greco-Roman pagan calendar, is now available on Amazon.com.
Festae includes four odes called the “Seasonal Greetings”, dedicated to Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. It also contains forty-three additional odes in a traditional three-stanza form, dedicated to:
- Poseidon, god of the wild sea
- Neptune and Salacia in their roles as providers of salt for food preservation
- Hecate as a goddess of magic and artistry
- Hephaestus and the Nymphs, the teachers of technology and craft
- Pallas Athena
- Artemis of the Moon, and of Music
- The Nine Muses
- Vesta three festivals of June
- All the Heras
- The year-end celebrations of the Roman sacred year in February
- and numerous others…
This collection joins four other of my poetry on Amazon, including The Sun’s Paces: hymns for the Decans of the Zodiac, and the Poems for the Behenian Stars, and Hymns for the Mansions of the Moon. You can also find The Tai Chi Poem. In all, these five collections now present one very long poem about tai chi, and nearly 130 other poems on subjects related to astronomy, ancient history, the better angels of our nature, and our relationship to the sky and each other.
It’s been my great pleasure to write and share these poems with you, and I hope you enjoy them. These materials are also listed on my publications page.
27 February 2017
Magic & Spirituality, Makery, Philosophy, Poetry
astrological poetry, astrology, creativity, magic, poems, poetry, publication
I have a new book on Amazon.com.
The Mansions of the Moon
The Mansions of the Moon, a collection of twenty-eight poems celebrating the angels of the Mansions of the Moon, and their images and lore, as described in Picatrix and other sources like Christopher Warnock’s book, The Mansions of the Moon, is available in Kindle format here.
Current price is $4.99 for twenty-eight poems, greeting the twenty-eight angels of the Moon’s orbit as found in traditional astrological sources like Picatrix.
From the book blurb on Amazon…
In many ancient sources, the Moon is called “The Treasure House of Images” and this book helps explore that name. From at least the classical era, ancient Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Indian civilizations divided the sky into twenty-eight Mansions, noting that the Moon spent a day in each of these places in the course of a month. As with the night sky divided into constellations, ancient astronomers named these Mansions and gave them images, and celestial rulers. Thus, the Mansions of the Moon are a ‘Zodiac’ of sorts for the Moon — a sequence of twenty-eight positions that the Moon occupies on successive days through her month-long procession across the sky.
In this sequence of twenty-eight poems, Andrew Watt explores what the Mansions have meant for hundreds if not thousands of years — the spiritual rulers said to reign in those palaces, the forces they put to work in human and earthly affairs, and the imagery that is said to adorn these Mansions. Each Mansion, and each poem, is thus a door or a window into a magical way of seeing the world. By following the Moon through each of the Mansions on succeeding days, the reader gains insight into the way the Moon truly is a Treasure House of Images.
Would you also like it as a downloadable PDF available through my store on Etsy.com? Please let me know… In the meantime, you can get my Poetry for the Behenian Stars there, as well as on Amazon.com.
Special thanks to Christopher Warnock. Without his book, The Mansions of the Moon, I would never have become so excited about this subject, or written these poems.
18 February 2017
Art and Design, Autumn Maker School, Makery, Poetry
binding, book binding, bookbinding, books, coptic stitch, making books, poetry, poetry books, poetry in the world of acts
There’s something beautiful about a stack of books bound with Coptic stitch. Particularly when you know that the contents of each book are your own. These are copies of my Book of Splendor, a collection of poetry exploring the relationships between nature and the divine in a particular corner of New England.
These are part of a limited edition of 100 copies: numbered, and hand bound, and the hand signed by the author, that is me. I interested in buying one? Let me know.
31 January 2017
Makery, Poetry, tai chi
amazon.com, Behenian stars, book, book for sale, daily practice, poem, poetry, sonnet, sonnets
I’m pleased to report that the Tai Chi Poem I composed in 2015 is now available for Kindle from Amazon.com. All sixty-two sonnets in order, together with the diagrams I composed for the poem, are now in a single digital document and available for $4.49. You can go through the back entries of this website and find all the poems — they were composed in 2014 and published here — but now they’re available as a convenient download.
The Tai Chi Poem
In 2014, I composed sixty-two sonnets describing the process of moving through the tai chi form that I first learned in 1998 in northeastern Connecticut. That sonnet sequence is now available as a downloadable Kindle file from Amazon.com.
Like most of my sonnets, these are Shakespearean or Elizabethan sonnets, in iambic pentameter with a rhyme scheme running ABABCDCDEFEFGG. Some portions of the sequence may be useful to tai chi teachers for creating effective mnemonics for their own students, but I don’t recommend trying to learn tai chi from reading the poems aloud or reciting them. Some things are better left to professionals rather than me. I also think the poems are quite beautiful on their own. My goal, overall, was to create something akin or in the tradition of the traditional martial arts and tai chi manuals, a combination of simple diagrams and poetic descriptions of the movements. The work is dedicated to my teacher, Laddie Sacharko of Star Farm Tai Chi. The tai chi poem will always be available exclusively from Amazon in print form.
The Tai Chi Poem also joins my other book, Poems for the Behenian Stars for $9.99 on Amazon. This second book, a poetic exploration of the fifteen stars of H.C. Agrippa’s list of the major stars of the northern celestial hemisphere, is also available as a PDF download from Etsy for $10. I earn more royalties from an Etsy download, but I understand that Kindle grants me access to a wider audience. Feel free to tell your friends!
25 January 2017
magic, Magic & Spirituality, Poetry
behenian, Behenian stars, chapbook, etsy, kindle, odes, pdf, poems, poetry, watermountain studios
I’m pleased to report that the Poems for the Behenian Stars poetry book is now available on Etsy as a downloadable PDF (US $10.00) file, and on Amazon.com as a Kindle file (US 9.99). So you now have a choice of formats. I earn somewhat more from the Etsy download than from Amazon, which I hope factors into your choice; but either way it should work to your advantage.
What do you get in this collection?
The Behenian Stars are found in the writings of H.C. Agrippa in Book II, Part 4, chapter 47 and in other sources on medieval and Renaissance astrology and astronomy. No wonder, really: most of them are first-magnitude stars in the northern celestial hemisphere:
- Algol in Perseus
- the Pleiades in Taurus
- Aldebaran in Taurus
- Sirius in Canis Major
- Procyon in Canis Minor
- Regulus in Leo
- Arcturus in Bootes
- Algorab in Corvus
- Spica in Virgo
- Polaris in Ursa Minor
- Capella in Auriga
- Alphecca or Gemma in Corona Borealis
- Antares in Scorpio
- Vega in Lyra
- Deneb Algedi in Capricorn
And to this list I’ve added three other poems, honoring Fomalhaut, the only one of the four royal stars not in the list; Altair in Aquila the eagle, one of the other first-magnitude stars in the northern sky; and Alkaid in Ursa Major, a star whose spectrum helps to classify other stars and which sits somewhere between 1st and 2nd magnitude on that 6-point scale.
The poems are in the traditional formal style called an ode: three stanzas of ten lines each, organized metrically and with a rhyme scheme of ABABCDECDE. Each poem draws on the traditional lore of both astronomy and astrology, and ends with a call to bring the influence of the star into our lives. For magic, for poetry, for learning the northern stars, for the purpose of studying the night sky — these poems help get you to the behen (from the Arabic word for ‘root’) of naked-eye astronomy. Reading the poems while under the night sky will help connect you to your ancestors, and to the timeless mythology that constantly rolls by overhead.
17 January 2017
magic, Magic & Spirituality, Makery, Poetry
behenian, Behenian stars, chapbook, etsy store, pdf, purchase, star lore, stars
I’ve published a chapbook. It’s a digital PDF that you can download (and choose to print, if you so desire, for your Book of Shadows, your poetry binder, your vademecum, your 3-ring circus of astrological or mythological lore.
The Poems for the Behenian Stars is available immediately through my Etsy store for $10.00. It’s a collection of eighteen poems — for magic, for praise, for learning the stars, for learning to read and recite poetry, for supporting me. The poems will take you on a journey through some of the astrological lore, imagery and powers of the Behenian Stars, while waking you up to their power in the world.
And what are the Behenian Stars, I hear you ask? Well, they’re a list. They’re most of the brightest stars in the Northern Celestial Hemisphere (I’ve added three to the traditional list of fifteen), and they range from Caput Algol, the snake-haired head of fierce Medusa in the constellation of Perseus, whose baleful eye allegedly wreaks havoc at first but then brings protection… to Sirius in Canis Major, the dog-head of Orion’s hound, who grants us peace-making and mediation skills.
Whether you’re a magician, an astrologer, an astronomer with a penchant for poetry, a poet with a penchant for astronomy, or just a lover of the other poetry on this website — here’s a collection for you. None of the poems in this chapbook has appeared on this website before, and likely won’t ever. They’re a secret testimony, a hidden hymnal, and a way to begin your study of the stars!
I hope you enjoy them.
9 January 2017
Magic & Spirituality, Makery, Poetry
direction, focus, hymn, jupiter, jupiter and saturn, ode, planning, poetry, Saturn, willpower, writing
On Thursday this week, there’s an unusual astrological moment. Jupiter will be in the third decan of Libra, and — 120° away or at a Trine Aspect, in the language of astrology — Saturn will be in the third decan of Sagittarius. The two large outer planets, one governing expansion and rulership and the other governing discipline and boundaries, will be in a highly-beneficial relationship called “mutual reception” where each reinforces the other: Jupiter granting expansiveness of ideas and courage in the face of challenges; and Saturn reinforcing discipline and deliberateness to accomplish difficult tasks. A friend of mine, A.A., is undertaking a special operation, and this is composed for his work.
Hail, great lords of the outermost darkness,
stern Saturn in the skull of a stallion,
Jove at the center of spinning swiftness!
Guiding stars who lead this treasure galleon,
I glory in your lights and praise your Names.
For you, old one, with great discipline rule
the mariner’s careful contemplation
and the discipline that achieves results.
Jupiter — riding ocean like a pool,
remaining steady amid gyration,
the cheerful captain whom the world exalts!
Now each of you in palaces reside
where your dignities sit, enthroned in grace,
and each of you also may hear and heed
the other’s degrees, turned to each friend’s face.
Secret allies in steadiness of will,
and unafraid in the tumult and strife
of all the hazards of troublesome years:
when all is wording ’round, you remain still —
charting out the course of a mindful life,
and steering true, like clever engineers.
Great and glorious, reliable, stern —
steady and sure as the music of spheres:
make this ship a home, and often return:
be my bankers, my cautious financiers,
who grow my wealth and keep my accounts black,
avoiding the wave-troughs of debt and waste,
while leading me through confusion and cheat.
When the winds change, guide me to the new tack;
then help me face the gale properly braced,
with an agile ship, and sea-ready feet.