Calendar of the Moon
Day of the Underworld III
Altar: The altar is the same as the day before, with the chalice replenished, and a pile of coins.
Offering: Whatever the Gods tell you.
Daily Meal: Fasting tonight, until the next morning.
Underworld Invocation III
(The speaker holds up the chalice yet again, and says:)
Elixirs fade and potions fail,
The gold is rusted from the grail,
The wine is changed to water thin,
The blood is wasted from the skin,
And all that from this glass is drunk
May leave us only smaller shrunk.
(The chalice is passed, and each takes a sip.)
Now that we have passed through Earth,
We must pass over the River of the Dead.
Black water laps at our feet,
Faces stare up at us, seeing and unseeing,
From the depths of the River.
Are you ready to pass over the water?
Do you have ready the fare you will pay?
(Each takes two coins from the altar, and states what they will do to pay their fare. The speaker then takes the dried thistles and crushes them into a box, saying:)
Even the King is old and white
When royal noon is turned to night.
Yet better the peace of thistledown
Than power under a thorny crown.
Let him sleep his sleep of grey
Where gold and purple fall away,
And let us lie beside him here,
Past pain or joy, desire or fear.
(All come forward and lie down on the floor, in front of the altar, in a position of death, with the coins laid on their eyes. One who has been chosen to do the work of the ritual comes by with the chalice, and gently bathes the face of every corpse, and collects the coins. After a time, all rise in silence and go.)