September 2022 Full Moon
by Sarah Gottesdiener·
in Pisces 17°41'
3:00 am PST
a September Full Moon Love Letter
by Mandana Boushee
Are my relationships with my plant kin healthy and generous? Am I responsibly engaging in an honest relationship and with consent? Have I explored all the ways I can connect with wild plants without taking? When we stop and question our foraging practices, we can investigate the multitude of ways we can engage with our plant friends and relatives.
In connecting with our plant siblings without expectation, greed, or desire, we braid into the mycelium of life. There, in that place, we are given the opportunity to synthesize raw strands of knowledge into a woven web of wisdom.
Yes, we forage for sustenance (food, shelter, medicine, fiber, warmth) but also to delve into underexplored and untapped forms of intimacy, to be stunned into gratitude.
We forage to feed our souls, to carry our traditions forward, to find purpose, to light our way through diaspora, to connect and love on the seed that birthed us into meaning, to grow friendship, to feel alive and a part of the ungraspable presence that surrounds us.
We don’t have to participate in the myth web that human-centered relationships are the only thing we crave and long for.
My foraging lineage can be read from the map of my mother’s hands. Her many lines were a compass, revealing the latitude of our passed-on traditions and the longitude of our cultural story. Those lines were my first pathways through time travel and the map that I used to chart my sense of place and home.
My fondest memories were of our walks to town to do laundry or get groceries. Though those walks were tied to our struggles—our lack of a car included—when I held my hands in hers, our locked union reflected the wild pistachio forests of our homelands, the scent of damask rose, onion, and jasmine, and the movement memory of picking grape leaves off the vine.
Though we never asked or expected to happen upon gifts to harvest, my mother, in all of her Capricornian ways, could scavenge ambrosia from shit. She was my greatest teacher in unlocking the many ways we can forage and her lessons were many.
Feed the soil nourishing teas, whispering prayers and jokes to all of their mysterious moving parts. Be astounded by all the ways the land gives, let them rest, not expecting them to always be productive or of use. Lie in a bed of moss, ask permission to cuddle them in a caress. Offer the willow tree a bath, taking time to massage the water into their feather-veined leaves. Wander into a city park, find a plant, tree, or bird you’re curious about...ask them on a date and show them a good time. Trip out to a Google image of a fuchsia flower. Pop into a peony and ant orgy. Lay under an aspen tree as their quaking leaves shake your tension free. Feed a rose a spoonful of honey. Breathe in the fragrance of a mimosa flower and stay awhile. Touch your skin, and re-orient yourself to your inner hyphae of interconnectedness.
We are allowed to explore the abyssal depths of our loving potential. We can tend the wild and in that tending, be nourished and tapped into our pleasure ecologies.
Mandana is an Iranian-American plant hoe aka herbalist, storyteller, and co-educator with her soul binch, Lauren Giambrone at Wild Gather: Hudson Valley School of Herbal Studies. Her utopian future garden is seeded with night-blooming flowers, joyous cackling goldenrod, consensual sense8 orgy lilies, all-you-can-drink pomegranate juice ponds, and trees that grow Fenty make-up fruit. When she’s not actively tending her utopian paradise garden she can be found freaking on a puzzle, laying it down at scrabble, reading five books at once, and drinking tea from the samovar at her crib. Find her at mandanaboushee.com