I have spent the last few days on a beautiful old farm some 30km north of Helsinki.

It is a mysterious old place run by some determined farmers to build a dream.

The beautiful dark wooden buildings stand sturdy and proud surrounded by

apple and berry trees.

And the chickens and rabbits live safely in their pens, while the two cats roam free.

I’ve been told there are cows, though I have not had the pleasure of meeting them yet.

Around the property is some random clutter, half started projects, and by the barn are

two broken down buses.

There is a little farm shop where passers by can pick up

eggs, grain and fresh vegetables.

On a clear night, the stars shine unpolluted telling old tales of

Pegasus, Cygnus and Cassiopeia.

Tonight is Kekri, otherwise known as Samhain or All Hallow’s Eve.

May all our friends be one in spirit, if not in life.

The autumn leaves have fallen

And the crows have sung and callen

The ghosts of days gone by

To ask the question why

The sky is a haze of grey

Where the birds dance and play

Calling the dead over

Around the fire to hover

Hauska kekri and merry meet again, and again.

A spell to take all the gloom of autumn and turn it into winter fair:

One whole; Two parts; Three thoughts; Four worries;

Five feathers; Six sweets; Seven hearts; Eight keys; Nine steps; Ten places.




Pumpkin Pie fit for kin and king

1 pumpkin head from the headless horseman

peal the pumpkin, empty out the seeds and chop the flesh in cubes;

boil the pieces in a pot until softly stewed,

then mash them well and leave to cool…until cold.

Now, jump ahead to the flour…

sugar to sweeten the soul

nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon to warm the heart

add the sugar and spices to the pumpkin;

2 eggs beaten from happy hens

a cup of cool cows milk

mix the eggs and milk so they become one;

then blend in the pumpkin: it is almost done!

When the pie crust is ready, then spoon it in mix.

Bake it so the top will brown go,

and the filling will firm, now no finger can squirm.

Then all will come round, without needing a sound;

as they will smell the sweetness and spice and all things nice.

2 cups of wheat flour

a generous drizzle of rapeseed oil

a couple of spoons of water

Blend the flour, oil and water carefully, as well as some sorrow and loss;

use a sense of feel, taste and touch to know when to stop.

Kneed it whole together, then let it sit somewhere to cool.

When it feels like rubbing cold winter hands,

then kneed it again and roll it out to fit your favourite pie tin.

Take it to an oven warm, to bake it a bit dry, just so, for here the pumpkin will go.

Now it is time, to go up and climb to where it is soft and nice, with sugar and spice.