And like a dying lady, lean and pale,
Who totters forth, wrapped in a gauzy veil,
Out of her chamber, led by the insane
And feeble wanderings of her fading brain,
The moon arose up in the murky east,
A white and shapeless mass.
Percy Bysshe Shelley
This morning as I was waiting for my train, I looked up and the Moon was still visible in the sky. She was just little more than a sliver as she continues her cycle from full to New.
As the Moon grows smaller, its energy represents reflection and cleansing. The Waning Moon is sometimes called an old Moon. It’s seen in the east before dawn. The waning moon parallels sunset, when energy subsides and stabilizes. During the Waning Moon we work on that which we wish to release, to cleanse, and to let go of. It is the time for endings. In ancient Greek culture, the goddess Demeter who signifies the harvest.
Mythically, the Waning Moon is symbolic of the Crone, the wise woman, the elder who knows the secrets of life. She is the woman who has reached a certain age and has come to a point in her life where she has skills she can teach to the younger generation and wisdom to pass on. This, the autumn cycle of her life, follows the preparation of the maiden, the fulfillment of the mother, and now the woman as Crone comes into her own, bringing inner wisdom, guidance and the mysteries. It is the time later in life when our experience is sought as wisdom.
The Crone is connected with the color black, night, endings, the cauldron, caves, the spider and web, the owl, the raven, and the Waning or Dark Moon. She represents old age, maturity, the command for respect, winter, and the waning moon. She holds life and death as one within her. She is the post-menstrual woman Since the Crone is usually at the time of life when she no longer bears children, she has the ability to gather her force once spent in this area and focus her energies and creativity on other matters
Youth, large, lusty, loving--youth full of grace, force, fascination,
Do you know that Old Age may come after you with equal grace, force, fascination?
Day full-blown and splendid--day of the immense sun, action, ambition, laughter,
The Night follows close with millions of suns, and sleep and restoring darkness.
At 64, soon to be 65, I'm not totally a crone, but I realize I am nearing the age because of the respect I receive at work. The others don't like to tell jokes or talk dirty in front of me. And I have a lot more aches and pains than I used to. My wrinkles are deepening, my neck is drooping, and the grays are taking over. My children have grown and are on their own. And I ask myself, 'Are you ready for this? Are you ready to be a Crone?' You bet I am. I am ready to accept the power of the Crone.
Nature gives you the face
you have at twenty; it is up to
you to merit the face
you have at fifty.