For all of his wrestling with masculinity, Bruce brings me back to a core feminine experience in “Jesus Was an Only Son.” In the lyrics of this gorgeous, devastating retelling of the crucifixion of Christ, Bruce has taught me a fundamental truth about motherhood.
For years, I really only went through the motions of the ancestor reverence that is so prominent during this season. My intentions were good, but I have been lucky enough to experience few losses in my more than 40 years. The most recent dead on my Samhain altar had been my grandfather, who passed in 2004. I honored the festival, but never really felt it.
When we feel secure, the cycles of life and death can remain at a safe, philosophical distance. But last year, inevitably, the lessons of the dying season became more real to me. I could feel the crone creeping closer. I warned my spouse and prayed death wouldn’t visit too intimately with us.