When fire is dying
And gold flames leap up
In the last struggle
To give light and heat
There is a brief illumination
There is a brief strenght--
The hottest days of summer,
Its final breath of strength,
Begin when sun's started it's slide south.

So with late summer afternoons,
sunlight filters through heavy boughs
gilding a world slowly falling
into sleep of winter--
So it is--sunlight in August,
Flash on a sickle
Reaping wheat under falling light
Summer's long days give way
To winter's long nights.

Between growth and consumption
Lies death.
Die as grain
Rise as bread
Leave one life
Wake again in another
Live, consume, die
Be consumed, give life,
Be reborn

Reaping-time weaves mystery
Wrestled from Bres by Lugh--
Death and life are games
Each of us a piece
On a fidchell board
Each of us a player
In the Lughnassadh games
Each of us growing, dying,
And growing again.

Mary Jones 2004