Wood, Water & Roses-Women's Medicine for Difficult Times - EH SOLO
Composer: Ferenz, Amber
Publisher: T.D. Ellis
for solo English horn
by Amber Ferenz (b. 1973) - American composer and bassoonist
From the composer:
Big thanks go to Dr. Janelle Ott, for commissioning this piece. Janelle approached me at GPBC and asked if I would consider writing a piece to help a young former student of hers named Olivia whose life has been changed profoundly by a car accident. As I listened to Janelle’s tale, Olivia’s passion for music and for the bassoon spoke volumes to me. It’s been clear to me for some time now that many are in desperate need of healing on all levels, and it is my prayer flowing to Creator’s ears through music that we all receive the healing we most need to help us remain embodied and do our precious work which we came here to do. Each of us carries within us our own spark, our own medicine gift to the world. Women carry particularly potent medicine, due to the polarity of receptiveness and intuitive softening inherent in their energetic makeup. The entire planet is in a shambles from enduring too much masculine energy for way too long. It’s beyond time to listen to the women in our lives. Our wives, grandmothers, sisters, mothers and aunties hold great wisdom, which must be brought forward to balance and heal us all. Put another way: first, the women heal the women, and then the women will heal the men.
I. Wood: Women are the carriers and handlers of wood in many cultures, because women are often the tribe’s medicine makers, healers, and cooks. Wood is what’s left after the tree’s spirit has departed, and is an extraordinary energy bank of stored solar energy. That life-giving sun fire, itself a spirit, can be called forth and used to comfort, heal, and warm. The wooden bassoon speaks for the wood it is made from, singing a song to remind us to be rooted deeply, to stand tall, to flourish even in life’s storms. Give thanks to the trees for this gift of their lives they have laid down.
II. Water: Joan Two Wolves Henry, an indigenous elder, once told me that water is the original women’s medicine. Water is yielding, yet strong. A single drop over time can wear away stone. Yet: we are made of 78% water and in the delicate process of assembling our bodies inside our mothers, we float in oceans. Every cell of us remembers this, and knows also this very secret: water cleanses, heals, washes away that which we no longerneed. Without it, we cannot exist on this world. Water is a blessing, it is life itself. As climate change accelerates and humans begin to fight over water, give frequent thanks to the water spirits for allowing us to continue to live.
III. Roses: Don’t let the roses fool you. They look soft and gentle, vulnerable and open, but they are powerful healers. There’s nothing better for emotional healing than roses. Their perfume always cheers me, and the extraordinary softness of their petals is a gift. Then there is all that color, and the language of color can say so very many things! They are currency in the medicine world: we offer the precious fragrant gift of roses to the spirits to ask for their help and to praise our helpers when the help comes, as it always does. We offer them to each other as well: as gifts, as entreaties, as apologies, as acknowledgement of the unspeakable.
The roses say: May your burdens be set down by the side of the road. May you find your way forward with infinite grace and mercy. May your healing be gentle and thorough. May your loving heart and your will to be present be strengthened, may peace fill your soul, and the clarity you most need come to you today, and always. And so it is.