From a ritual perspective, I am never quite sure what to do about the equinox. Years ago, a member of our coven suggested that the quarter days (equinoxes, solstices) were “outer” while the cross-quarter days were “inner.”
In other words, you do magic at Samhain and party at Yule. (Of course, Samhain, which falls this year the evening of November 6 in North America, has its “outer” companion, Hallowe’en.)
So, “outer.” It could be a harvest celebration. We are cleaning out the garden ahead of the first frost. Wednesday is the last pickup at our community-supported agriculture farm. We had a brief but intense mushroom harvest in August—now the greenhouse is full of drying tomatoes.
A friend posted on Facebook that the equinox made him ready to go elk hunting. I get it. But it is on Samhain that I have more than once stood shivering and watching at the edge of an aspen grove as the sun sinks away.
Home thirty-six hours after the equinox, I took the dogs for their morning walk. A Townsend’s solitaire was calling in the woods, its winter call, just one note whistled slowly again and again.
When I heard that winter call, I felt as though the gears of the cosmos had just gone “clunk.” Something had changed. And maybe that is the equinox’s outer manifestation.