POEM: THE GREAT MOTHER
“If we think with the Earth spirit, our souls become populous with beauty, for we turn the cup of our being to a spring which is always gushing.” A.E.
The Great Mother sustained me at that time
Of the bare earth and the cold rime
With the purity of her clear air,
The acceptance of the seasons year by year,
The serenity of patience in her face
That soothed the heart and slowed my pace.
Wher’er I walked, by hill or field or shore,
In summer time she never gave me more.
Her calm, her majesty and powers
Strengthened me and taught me in those hours.
Under the open sky, or through the shadowed wood
New truths were given and were understood.
Vast and deep her wisdom. With her lore
Our souls are fed, perhaps as ne’er before.
In winter quiet, where frozen is the rill
Herself she gives, our emptiness to fill.
Clare Cameron Memories of Eden London: The Mitre Press, 1976
Clare Cameron (1896 – 1983) was an English poet and mystic, whose life spanned much of the twentieth century. In 1930 her Green Fields of England, centred on footpath travels in the English countryside, was compared to the work of Richard Jefferies and Edward Thomas in the previous generation. At this period, she was involved with the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. For two years the noted occultist Israel Regardie worked for her husband Thomas Burke and wrote the first of his books on the Kabbalah at their home. Later, Clare became associated with the London Buddhist Society under the leadership of Christmas Humphries and formed a friendship with the young Alan Watts, who she succeeded as editor of the journal Buddhism in England (later The Middle Way) when he left for the U.S. in 1938. Gradually Clare moved in a more Christian direction, and for over 20 years she edited The Science of Thought Review, based on the ideas of the mystical teacher Henry Hamblin.
Throughout all these changes Clare drew on her experience of nature as sacred within a spirituality that emphasized the sanctity of existence and the silent background of being. Politically she championed women’s empowerment, non-violence in both aims and methods, the view that interdependence applies to countries as well as people, and the growing attention to environmental causes. She also supported the early development of interfaith dialogue.