"The Passion of Llew and Blodeuedd: a Marriage, a Death, and a Resurrection."
Written mostly by Patty K. and Lauren A., with help from Nora T., Jenniforensic, Nej, Ed and Norma.
Grove of the Other Gods, ADF, August 2004. 31 participants.
(NOTE: This is a rough script. GOG prefers extemporaneous invocation and improvisation, and we have a crew that expects that, and is very good at it. See "Random Quotes" by Kristen to get an idea of how it all turned out.)
Preritual preamble and backround (by Ed):
It all goes back to Math, a king of North Wales. Math needed to rest his feet in the lap of a virgin- sort-of symbolic of the land itself- and that gave Math his strength.
Well, Gwydion's friend, Gilveathy, loved Goewin, who was Math's virgin footstool. Gwydion conjures a war to separate Math and Goewin, and Gilveathy rapes Goewin. Math punishes Gilveathy and Gwydion in a most appropriate way- he turns them into stag and hind for a year, and they have to return with a faun. Then swine the next year, and they have to return with piglets. Then stag and hind again....
Meanwhile, at the castle, Math is auditioning for another virgin. Aranrhod, a Goddess, tries out for the part, but as she walks over Math's staff (interesting, no?) two children drop out. One is Dylan, and he disappears into the sea. The other one is Llew. Aranrhod is understandably pissed, her reputation is shot, and so she curses Llew that he can't ever have a name until she gives him one, can't have weapons unless she wills it, and can't ever have a human wife.
Gwydion eventually tricks Aranrhod into giving Llew a name and weapons, but there ain't no way he's going to get a wife.
Llew is understandably upset about this, and complains to Gwydion, who talks to Math, and they get together and conjure a woman out of flowers for Llew. (Oak, broom, and meadowsweet, for those who want to try this at home.)
They name their creation Blodeuedd, flower-face, and Llew marries Blodeuedd, the girl made of flowers. Listen closely to the marriage vows- the whole story is in there, really- Nora did a brilliant job with those.
Llew doesn't like to be tied down, and while he's away one day Blodeuedd sees a sexy hunter in the forest and decides to have some fun. She and Gronwy fall in love- and they plot to kill Llew. Of course, Llew , being supernatural, can't be killed in any ordinary way, and Blodeuedd has to find out how to do it, and contrive to get him in that position.
Once he's killed, Llew turns into an eagle and Gwydion has to find him and bring him back to life.
Our story starts at the wedding. We will be weaving the story throughout the ritual.
Clear opening: three chimes on crystal bell (Carol)
Statement of purpose:
Earth Mother honoring and invocation (Dragynphyre of Midnight Sun Grove, ADF)
Meditation (Lady Sue- HP of Portal of the Porcupine)
SCENE 1 : THE HANDFASTING
Director (Nej, as Math): "Scene 1, The Handfasting, Take 1"
Math (Nej) joins Gwydion (Jenniforensic) & Blodeuedd (Lauren A.) standing in the front hall.
Narrator (Ed): "Welcome to As The Wheel Turns. In our last episode, Llew got his name and armor, and we saw how Gwydion and Math created Blodeuedd out of flowers as a wife for Llew."
Cue psaltry music (Our bard- Jenne)
Math, Gwydion & Blodeuedd begin the wedding procession. Llew (Patty) is already in front of the Bile with Brigid (Nora).
Brigid: "Dearly beloved we are gathered here to celebrate the union of Blodeuedd of the Flowers and Llew of the Many Skills… and the myths that each year we cannot escape..." (To be further elaborated and read from a journal/book)
Blodeuedd: "From the day I was created I have known that the nectar of my sweetness was fated only for you. I offer you this blossom, my husband, the only destiny I have ever known" (Give Llew the flower)
Nora: "By reason of reinforcing the ancient tales that make our seasons turn and by the power vested in me from the myths contained in the Mabinogi, I now pronounce you man and wife. You may now kiss the bride."
(Llew and Blodeuedd kiss)
[CUE CARD: Applause]
Narrator: "And now a word from our sponsors."
COMMERCIAL 1: Llew's Party Service (Chuck and Peg)
Announcer type: "Are your parties always lame?"
Well (Maggie) (Response for all offerings: "Accept our offering")
Gwydion opens the Gates (Jenniforensic)
SCENE TWO: THE BETRAYAL!
Director: "Scene 2, The Betrayal, Take 1."
Narrator: "A few months have passed since we last saw our loving couple and the marriage isn’t going well."
(Llew is searching for his staff in the background & muttering, “Where did I put that staff?”)
Blodeuedd: (with the staff behind her back) “You don’t think you’re going to leave me alone again, do you?”
[CUE CARD: GASP!]
Narrator: "Later that day, Blodeuedd saw a group of hunters near the castle."
Narrator: "The party has been going on all night."
Narrator: "The next morning"
Narrator: "The party has been going on for 3 days, and Blodeuedd has fallen madly in love with Gronwy."
Outsiders Offering (Jeff)
COMMERCIAL 2: CUT-RATE INSPIRATION IN A BOX (written by Nora, performed by Jenne and Daphne)
Brigid invocation as muse and inspiration: “There isn’t enough NO in the world…” (Nora)
Nature Spirits (Josh)
Goddesses & Gods (Betty)
Director: "Ok, everyone outside!"
SCENE 3: THE DEATH!
(Once everyone is outside and in position)
(Props needed: spear, human goat & kiddy pool)
Narrator: "A year and a day have passed since we left our story. Blodeuedd has told Gronwy the only way to kill Llew is to stab Llew with a spear that was worked on over the course of a year and a day, but only on Sundays . On top of that, when Llew is struck he must have one foot on the side of a tub and the other on a goat. How will Blodeuedd get him to do this?"
Blodeuedd: "….I was wondering ...if you would mind calming my nerves."
Director: "CUT! Where’s the goat? You! Get over here!" (grabs the "goat" (turned out to be Jeff), points to where he is supposed to kneel down, and throws a goatlike rug over his back.)
Director: "Scene 3: The Death. Take 2"
[CUE CARD: GASP!]
Director: "Cut to commercial."
COMMERCIAL 3: GATEKEEPERS LOCAL 404 (written by Nej and Jenniforensic, performed by Bill)
SCENE 4: THE REBIRTH!
(Props needed: Llew puppet, tree, stepladder behind the bench,
Director: "Scene 4:The Rebirth. Take 1."
Llew is now an eagle (puppet) hiding in the tree. Gwydion comes through the crowd looking for Llew.
Gwydion: "Where did Llew go off to? Gah, my legs are killing me." (Sits down at the bench to rest).
Gwydion: "Here Llew…come on down…" (bird call/whistle, gets the audience involved, etc…)
[ CUE CARD: Applause ]
Gwydion magically transforms the eagle back into Llew (a.k.a. Llew comes out from behind tree & loses the puppet.)
Llew: (pat down boobs, looks startled at boobs, mutters): "I think you need a little more practice." (Grabs a gummy) "Hey that’s mine!" (Puts in a pocket.)
Llew INVOCATION: The turning year, harvest, Llew dies for us.... (offering for Llew)
Everyone else back inside. Jenniforensic & Nora keep Llew outside during Blodeuedd’s invocation.
(As people are getting settled):
Blodeuedd’s invocation: forgotten goddess... betrayed herself, lack of choice.... (offering for Blodeuedd)
Director: "Where is Llew? Somebody get that guy. We aren’t paying him to be playing with groupies in his trailer."
Praise- ("Praise for Blodeuedd, Llew, the Kindreds, the season... the bread man will be offered to the fire later....") (Main sacrifice: ear of corn cut with sickle. "Our praise goes up to thee.... ")
Omen: (Patty's new Llew cards. Readers: Peg, Betty and Hillary and Patty. Change takes time... Right here, right now... Unpredictable changes on the horizon... Clarifier: Sunflower.) (Sunflower particularly noted, as the bile was decorated in sunflowers for this ritual.)
Waters of life: (Full RDNA - ADF catechism of the waters. Pourers: Daphne, Elennion, and Carol. Passers-out: Chuck, Lauren Z., Betty.)
Director: "That’s a wrap. Roll the credits."
Narrator: "This episode of 'As the Wheel Turns' was brought to you thanks to the aid of the earth mother, Brigid, the ancestors, nature spirits, and many other Gods and Goddesses."
Thanks to Blodeuedd, Llew, Brigid, Math, Gronwy, the Goddesses, Gods, Kindreds, Earth Mother, and those assembled...
Thank Gwydion and ask him to close the gates...
Llew: "If you’re here for the groom, the wake is out back."
Narrator: "This rite has ended."