When spring hides her face

by | Sep 15, 2014 | Uncategorized | 18 comments

 When spring hides her face, disappearing behind veils of rain, I create altars.

 Not altars in the religious sense, but rather altars in homage to nature, and the seasons.

 This is the definition I give in my book, ‘A Cup of Sunlight’:
‘An altar is a collection of objects that serve as a focus for spiritual awareness.’

This one helps me to gaze into the eye of spring,

 to lose myself in its greening energy. I remember the force that drives through all living things in this season, and the impulse to growth, change and transformation that is so strong now.

 A green candle, the water of life, and the sweet scents of freesias and hyacinths make another altar on yet another day when the rain and wind fly through the air.

Spring is the season of surprise. 
I have no memory of ever having planted the blue hyacinth above, which popped up in triplicate out of an apparently inert pot. Maybe it was the one I bought last year, that promised to flower but then disappointed and faded away. Last year’s disappointment is this year’s delight.

My altars make me smile, and help me to hold faith with the knowledge that spring really is here, even when the cold blasts outside would have me fooled.

‘The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size.’—Gertrude A. Wister


  1. AnneE

    Yes, I like this. None of my daffodils came up this year…

  2. Juliet Batten

    Anne, whatever happened to them? Maybe they are preparing a surprise for next year? I’ve been getting good worm juice from my worm farm lately and I suspect that’s been helping my balcony plants, which are doing really well this year.

  3. Friko

    I really like your idea of an altar.
    You’ve given me ideas too . . . . .

  4. Juliet Batten

    Friko, maybe you have an autumn altar in the making? Thank you.

  5. Marja

    oh love alters For sure a focus for spiritual awareness What a beautiful thought


  6. Juliet Batten

    Hi Marja, thanks for your comment. Something odd has happened with the formatting. If you’d like to resend the comment I’ll delete this one and replace it with the new one.

  7. silkannthreades

    Fortunately our spring weather has been beautiful, until now, but we need the rain, so for the time being I will see the rain as beautiful, as well. Little altars are wonderful. I do not have freesias yet for mine. That time is coming.

  8. Juliet Batten

    Gallivanta, you are welcome to our rain! The scent of the freesias is wonderful; I hope yours bloom soon.

  9. Hotly Spiced

    How amazing to have a hyacinth just pop up like that with no effort at all. They really are so beautiful; I love their colour and they really do scream ‘Spring’. I love your flowers – they have so much colour and are just gorgeous. We have had a very slow start to Spring. It’s been very cool with lots of grey skies and so much rain xx

  10. Juliet Batten

    Charlie, the hyacinth has been a lovely surprise. We are having a slow start too, temperature-wise. Thanks.

  11. Hilary Melton-Butcher

    Hi Juliet – great idea … wish I had a garden … but I do enjoy the great outdoors and nature as she changes ..

    Lovely thoughts of Spring for you – I’me enjoying our Indian Summer right now – which is continuing on .. bliss!

    Cheers Hilary

  12. Juliet Batten

    Hi Hilary, I do like to bring nature inside when I can. Your Indian summer sounds great. Our spring is still hiding behind veils of rain.

  13. Vicki Lane

    Lovely and thoughtful. I’ve been at work on my autumn altar which is a corner cupboard with autumnal bits and pieces as well as mementos from the ancestors.

  14. Juliet Batten

    Vicki, how lovely to hear about your autumn altar. I like to think of our altars sitting in our homes in opposite seasons. Thank you.

  15. Juliet Batten

    Linda, enjoy your lingering summer while you can. Thank you.

  16. Marja

    oh I see something very odd happened. I think I just mentioned how beautiful the idea of the alter is. My daughter has a little alter with flowers and pretty things

  17. Juliet Batten

    Hi Marja, this one has come out without the big spaces. Lovely to hear of your daughter’s altar.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to my newsletter

Click here to receive my Seasons Newsletter and free gift


Follow me on: