I found a fantastic website the other day where you can watch hundreds of ‘Mind, Body, Spirit’ documentaries for free. It’s HERE – CHECK IT OUT. I love documentaries. I prefer them to ‘fictional’ films, just as in literature I prefer non-fiction to fiction. (I think of poetry as non-fiction – you can argue with me about that if you like, but I have many reasons for that idea.) I love finding out about other cultures, other lives, other ways of seeing and being. I went through a stage last year of watching a lot of environmental documentaries, but I had to take a break because it was starting to wear me down – once you educate yourself about the state of the planet – there is no turning away from how doomed the world is and what a monumental mess we’ve made…
Anyway, I recently watched a beautiful, old-fashioned, gentle documentary JULIETTE OF THE HERBS . It is about the fascinating and adventrous life of herbalist JULIETTE DE BAIRACLI LEVY, who left England to go and live with the gypsies and farmers of Europe, Turkey, Greece, Israel and North Africa to learn plant-lore and herbalism. In the film, she seems like a wise, gentle soul with great integrity and inner-strength. I found her very inspiring indeed.
(If you watch the documentary, do let me know what you thought of it…)
I’m teaching myself about herbs, too – just using books and at-home experiments. Whenever there is a gap in my garden, I try to find a new herb to fill it. I’d like my summer garden to be full of aromatic herbs and busy with bees!
Here’s an old wive’s tale for you – plant rosemary around your front door…rosemary is the herb for strengthening memory*, so if you have rosemary by your front door it’s believed your friends and loved ones will always remember you. Handily, it is also thought to ward off evil. Bonus!
*If you are studying for an exam or writing something which takes great mental focus, put a dab of rosemary oil on your shirt.