The Autumn Queen, who is past Her reproductive years, has never been differentiated in legend from the old Winter Crone, although they are clearly not the same.
The Queen, though not yet old, is quite aware that the passing of time is no longer in Her favor. However, She is not concerned with the business of winding down Her life, but rather living it to the max, before it grows too late. The Queen refuses to go softly into the dark night.
She bursts into glorious flame like a dramatic sunset in the western sky, where Her lingering orange and red cast colors the ambiance of the long evening hours with warm assurance. Dressed in the fabulous splendor of Fall foliage, She is ignited with a fiery patina, glowing from within. She is the fire we have been missing.
As the seasons turn, Her focus gets sharper and more concentrated like the round moon that is waning. To compare the Queen to the waning moon might at first seem negative, as “waning” implies decay, ebbing, deterioration, and loss. But, the energy of the moon is not in decline, nor is it getting smaller in size. The moon is always strong, always full, always brightly reflective. It is only our limited perspective that makes it seem like it is shrinking, darkening, losing its luminous potency, and disappearing into death.
The Queen, like the moon past full, concentrates Her wealth of experience. She is committed to honing, toning, distilling, condensing, defining, refining and honoring Her Self. As She ages, the Queen becomes a rich reduction, infused with the intense bouquet of the flower that She once was, heightened by the fruit that She has become. Like a fine broth or brandy, She is less liquid, more juice.
Trees are not known for their leaves, nor even by their blossoms, but by their fruit.
-Eleanor of Aquitaine, French/English Queen 1122-1204
The Queen of the Crop surveys Her realm and prepares to take in Her Harvest. But before She gathers in the fruits of Her labors, She must create a sturdy receptacle for Her collection of bounty, a vessel worthy of Her own value.
Our harvest is more than collecting our due. If we are to survive on what we have produced and grown, we have to do more than simply pick our crops. We have to have ways and means of making the supplies last, preserving them safely for the future. The Queen strives to develop sustainable and renewable strategies and sources of support. She is the Queen of the world, divine director and administrator of resources and systems — Her own and those of society around Her.
Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She offers counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to email@example.com.