Tonight’s Full Moon, the first after the Winter Solstice, is known variously as the Ice Moon, Cold Moon, Quiet Moon, After-Yule Moon or Wolf Moon.
Wolf Moon conjures up images of wolves howling in the hills, their spirits wild and free. Those of you with the wolf as your totem will know all about that! I find wolves fascinating. They have highly developed senses of hearing and smell. (It’s said that their sense of smell is 100 times greater than ours). So, the Wolf Moon message might be that this is a time to trust our own sense of hearing and smell: to listen to the part of us that knows and understands the Spirit of the Wild – and to act in accordance with it.
My favourite name for this first post-solstice Full Moon is the Ice Moon. At this time of year in the Northern Hemisphere, the light is cooler than at any other. Walking at night brings many glimpses of blue-white, icy light, even when temperatures are not freezing. Streams glint, branches flicker and last year’s beech nuts crunch underfoot as crisply as though the path were strewn with frost.
One of the old beliefs was that Fire and Ice accompanied the beginnings of our World and that they will accompany its end (which in turn will lead to new beginnings). Ice Moon draws the mind back to our beginnings just at the time when the earth is about to start rumbling with signs of new life. The darkest days are over and spring is daily nearer to hand.
Ice Moon magic says: winter is here and frost is at hand, the nights are long and the earth is hard, but life stirs under our feet!
This year the weather here is remarkably mild, so Quiet Moon is the best description for tonight. All is certainly quiet out in the woods, because a thick mist came rolling up the valley at twilight, muffling all sounds. There is no wind either. As night deepens, owls emerge, flying like giant moths through the trees. One moment their calls sound as though they are far away. The next they are above my head.
That’s one of the things I love about walking in moonlight (even when it is filtered through layers of mist): somehow the world feels even more full of wonder than ever, its sounds, smells and sights filled with sudden surprises.
I wish you a Moonful of magic, whether it is Icy, Quiet or filled with the howling of wolves!