Grey Heron Nights 14: The Old Crane Sisters plant the seed

The Old Crane Sisters are getting ready. Getting ready to plant the seed that has hatched from Old Crane Woman’s egg. They’re planting the seed of Women’s Wisdom. What will they plant with it, to make the seed of Women’s Wisdom grow?

The Old Crane Sisters are cooking. See the great black cauldron? They’re mixing together a potion. Listen carefully, as they chant the recipe. Listen carefully to the Crane Sisters’ song:

A sprinkling of story, a handful of dreams.
A night song, and a storm-dance.
The quiet flow of the river; the chaos at the heart of the waterfall.
The joy that is found in the coming of the light; the faith that is to be had in nights.
The certainty of a true heading; the music of what happens.
The silver thread of a spider’s web; a scrap of cloth from a torn veil.

Three small drops from the Cauldron of Inspiration: a fertiliser to make the seed of Women’s Wisdom grow.

The Old Crane Sisters have gathered together; three great birds in a circle. Will you gather with them; will you help them plant the seed? They are planting the seed of Women’s Wisdom — do you want to know what it is?

Women’s Wisdom is the power of place, speaking; Women’s Wisdom is the power of the land. Women’s Wisdom is the power of the animals; Women’s Wisdom is the power of the birds. Women’s Wisdom is the power of the plants; Women’s Wisdom is the power of the trees. Women’s Wisdom is the authority of the Otherworld; Women’s Wisdom is the creative energy of the world.

The Old Crane Twins have gone, and she’s flying now, Old Crane Woman. She’s flying away; it’s time for a rest. Tend her seed while she’s gone; nurture the seed of Women’s Wisdom.

But do you think she’s done, Old Crane Woman? Do you think she’s done?

Old Crane Woman isn’t done. Old Crane Woman is never done. She is the oldest creature in the world, and she can never be done. She guards the borders of life and death; she guards the gate to the Otherworld. She’s the flower on the tree of darkness, the bright white fire at the heart of the Mystery. She’s with you, Old Crane Woman. In the full-moon glare, on the river bank; in the new-moon dark on the midnight shore. Listen for her calling and you’ll hear her, Old Crane Woman. She’s there. Old Crane Woman is always there.


by Shannon Holt

(If you’ve enjoyed Old Crane Woman, she makes a cameo appearance in my new book,
If Women Rose Rooted.)


8 thoughts on “Grey Heron Nights 14: The Old Crane Sisters plant the seed

  1. This was such a wonderful series, thank you.
    It deepened my connection with herons and gave me a whole new perspective for this time of year.


  2. These posts have been both sustaining and inspirational. I was thrilled to see a crane take flight as I walked in the damp and the grey on the 27th December, and then on a beach in Norfolk I came across a crane that someone had created from flotsam and jetsam. I have carried Crane Woman with me as the year has turned. Thank you. I very much look forward to starting your Reclaiming the Wise Woman course this month.


  3. Many thanks for this powerful and empowering series, Sharon. It has certainly connected me to herons in an intimate way, a way of the land, the wetland, and I look forward to my next visits, as I know they will be richer, for the sharing of your wisdom, your stories. Blessed new year to you and all your loves.


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