Thursday, June 18, 2009

Fast! Salad!

(repeat refrain) With each tincture, I am amazed at how different each one is from the others and how they each reflect the planetary powers of which they partake. (end refrain)

So the words for Mercury seem to be fast and salad.

Fast makes sense. The planet moves quickly. Hermes/Mercury is the Divine Messenger, it wouldn't do for him to dawdle. This tincture was quick work (well, its still quick work, not being entirely done). The herb is home grown oregano, carefully harvested and dried for this specific purpose. It pulverized easily in the granite mortar, in fact, I had to be careful to not grind it into a powder. Upon pouring the Everclear over it, it was bleached of its color almost entirely. Jar sealed, wrapped in foil and labeled, it "talked" to me, reminding me of its presence several times a day. Unlike the previous tinctures, I never felt the need to unwrap it to check fluid levels, I knew it was fine. I also knew that yesterday would be the day for calcinating-even before I saw the weather report. (it was the only day it hasn't rained this month). The oregano only macerated for 22 days, but it was ready. (for those wondering, from May 27 to June 17). The calcination was fast. The fumes from the alcohol caught the flame from the torch and the leaves burned to pale grey ash immediately. I only finished it up on the stove because the wind had some up and I was afraid of the ash blowing away. But it only took another 5 minutes on the stove top for the pale grey ash to turn white. The whole step of calcination took a total of 10 minutes. When the ash was cool, I mixed it with distilled water, filtered it and put it aside. Already, this morning, I could see little clouds of crystal floating in the dish.

Salad. That is what the liquid smells like, a green mixed salad. The menstruum is a deep blue-green and has the smell of a bowl of assorted lettuces. I'm still working this part out, but I think it may have more to do with Greek Hermes, than Roman Mercury. I've come across references to the "fluid sexuality" of Hermes, and for reasons, I am not sure of, the metaphor of the mixed salad seems "right" for that. As for the lettuce...we have here the power of (and over) commerce and trade, could it be as blunt as that? Lettuce, greenbacks, money? Or, is it more fluid (that word again)? We have the God of law and thieves, psychopomp and fluid (ok, now I am using the word just to make myself grin) sexuality. Lettuce has been used as both an aphrodisiac and an anaphrodisiac. Depending on the body chemistry of the person imbibing, the sap can be used as a mild sedative or a mild intoxicant. Swings both ways, as it were.

It may be that I will get more information when the tincture is ready for use. I hope so. I have to wait for the rest of the water to evaporate, leaving me the salts to return to the menstruum. Considering the speed of this project to this point, I suspect that it won't be long before I will be able to do so. Should be interesting.


Hibiscus Moon said...

Wow, that's very interesting...all the detaisl you got out of it already.

Lavanah said...

Oh, another thing. The oregano was grown, harvested, dried and prepared for the tincture this spring. Another example of "fast."

suz said...

you are SO interesting! i absolutely love this blog.

Lavanah said...

Hi, Suz! I'm glad to see you here. And, I am always happy to be found interesting.