An impromptu ritual for Lugh

The storm has arrived. Thunder rolls all around, lightning streaks from cloud to cloud, its forks mirroring the trees in their early-Spring bareness. Gather yourself, your bare feet, your cup of dark wine, and stand outside, barely skirting the drenching rain beneath the small overhang of the stoop.

Chant:

Bright one,
Grand one,
Lord of high places,
Flash of quick lightning,
King of the gods.

Raise your arms, fingers stretching to the horizons. Lugh is in the storm, Lugh whose name means light, who arrives in a blinding swiftness, whose spear flies fast and true and deadly as the bright slashes creasing the sky.

Bright one,
Grand one,
Lord of high places,
Flash of quick lightning,
King of the gods.

Chant more, your voice rising and falling with the rumbling of distant thunder, the pelting of heavy rain on roof and ground, on leaf and branch and foot and skin. Plead, hand resting over your heart, feeling through your flesh to where the spear of Lugh nestles against your backbone like a brace and like an admonition.

Lord Lugh, I stand here at the brink of the storm, one step away from the driving rain, the wind whipping my clothes and hair. I stand upright, in humble emulation of your height and highness. I stand, with offering ready, awaiting the sight of your flashing hand.

Look out, panting, on the trees silhouetted against the orange glow of the city. Look out, stretching yearningly on the balls of your feet toward the sky and the storm.

A flash, the sky split by a bolt of blue-white fire. Fling your hand forward, unconscious, a reflex and a magnetism, dark wine arcing out into the suddenly vivid yard.

Lord Lugh! Who comes in the guise of heavenly fire! Who brightens with abandon, unconstrained, unstoppable! Who cleaves the intangible, splitting the very atmosphere until it rushes together, shocked, flinging air against air with a deafening roar! Hail, and welcome: accept this offering, poured out for you in gratitude and praise.

Settle back on your feet, shaken and aroused. Let the wineglass droop, unheeded, dripping unnoticed on the ground. Breathe in, raggedly. Breathe out.

Bright one,
Grand one,
Lord of high places,
Flash of quick lightning,
King of the gods.

Bright one,
Grand one,
Lord of high places,
Flash of quick lightning,
King of the gods.

Header image: “Lightning” by Yu Tung Brian Chan/Flickr. License: CC BY-NC.

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