The Bull's Prayer
The Other World, they tell me:
'Be good now and reap your rewards in the other world'
'What comes to you is from your choices in the other world.'
I could never get to that.
It's the texture of his skin which calls me here.
Warm breath summons good morning.
The bouquet - fertility exclaimed!
radiant grass-colored and rosy and white,
they were - when I arranged them last week.
They note time, dropping petals, drying
turning down to the Earth, they long for reunion.
I treasure this, this treasure I hold in
my hand (my ears my nostrils my tongue)
sentiments remembered and forgotten,
comfort sought and in a moment found.
Well fed now, carry on with the days chores.
~ Astrologer Ian Waisler
I’m all packed. Two lumping great suitcases waiting by the elevator, maxed out and on the verge of exploding, already revisited numerous times in an attempt to reduce the weight overload. The taxi is booked and will arrive at 9:45 am -- that’s approximately 77 minutes. I will no doubt keep it waiting as I rush round the apartment getting anxious about things that don’t really need to be done -- changing the water in the flowers for instance. Are the windows locked? Is the oven off??? [quite likely as I dont cook that much...] Ultimately though, I must descend to the street and be separated from this laptop and Wifi -- for 9 whole days. I’m going to Tennessee, sleeping under the stars, out of internet reach. But will I have finished this newsletter before then?
Fortunately I already made a start on Easter Sunday. Maggie and I spent the afternoon photographing the dish she’d concocted this month for the Taurean -- a sausage pie.
Its not very Spring-like but it’s hearty and robust like the bull -- and a silly subtle nod to another feature of the Taurean -- they’re very stubborn - rather like the very persistent winter we have had here in New York.
On the subject of Easter -- I’d never known the specifics of the pagan origins of this holy day and thus diligently googled for facts, as one does nowadays, delighted to discover there’s a goddess involved. The name heralds from the Saxon Eostre [aka Eastre]. Oestre, goddess of the dawn was worshipped at the spring equinox [and thats not the gym] -- in a celebration of fertility, involving the bunnies and the eggs we are quite familiar with. I don’t want to get too religious or anything but i do think there’s room for a few more otherly creatures in that department.
So the Taurean “ down to earth “ thing is well documented but I haven’t come across much literature on the “also completely mad” aspect of their characters --- or maybe thats just something common to those i know??? Sharp witted and invariably hilarious -- there is a left of field genius quality -- very passionate. Two of my favorites are Brian Eno and Miguel Gutierrez.
And they have very big hearts. In Melbourne last February I was reunited with a divinely eccentric ally, Mark Whitaker -- quite the passionate Taurus. The only English editor I worked with who could "Vogue", he designed a very "avant" clothing line before taking to yoga in duck to water fashion and moving to Australia. Now he's parenting a home full of dogs, kids and chatty parrots whilst working on a new line of K-9 creations.
There was a bull in the paddock behind my grandparents house. To my imagination savage and brutal, I was terrified of him. Today, I am much more scared by the brutalist structure of big business and the consequent attitudes that filter down to the individual -- it's very alienating. Now, many people I know are reaching out to old community ideas -- there's a lot of bartering going on!
The recent blood moon inspired Dove's imaginary flower this month. I love the moon. Waxing and waning beyond human control -- powerful enough to move the ocean.
Sausage and Potato Galette
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 large egg whisked together with 1 tsp cold water
3/4 lb Yukon Gold potatoes
1/2 small onion, very thinly sliced
3/4 1b thin fresh sausage
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Pulse flour and salt a few times in a food processor to blend. Scatter with butter and pulse until it’s a coarse mix. Pulse in whisked egg mixture in 2 additions just until dough starts to hold together. Gather into disk then chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, at least 1 hour or overnight.
While dough chills, slice potatoes paper thin and soak in a bowl of well-salted warm water at least 30 minutes or refrigerate overnight. Place sliced onion in a sieve and pour a kettle of boiling water over leaving to drain.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Lightly brown sausage and let cool.
Drain potatoes and squeeze in handfuls squeezing out all the water. Toss with onions, oil, salt, and pepper.
Roll out dough on a piece of parchment paper into a 12-inch round. Slide onto a cookie sheet. Leaving a 2-inch border all around, scatter with potato mixture and top with sausage. Fold pastry border up and over. Bake until dough is golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes.