In Memory of Peter Holley (1949-2015)

Sixteen years ago I attended a pagan camp on the borders of the lake district. I headed up there on the train and walked the eight miles from the tiny rural station to the site of the camp. I was carrying everything I would need but there was limitations and carrying alcohol there was going to get too heavy. As evening approached I lamented my lack of fine wine only to be told there was a guy who makes his own. I was introduced to a fascinating man who I sat with for the remainder of the evening having bought many bottles of what would turn out to be his legendary rice and raisin wine. This was Peter, a loveable character who took a shy and normally anti-social misfit and made a friend out of him almost instantly.

Since that time our friendship expanded in a multitude of ways. We have attended camps together, laughed together, cried together and screamed to the skies in ritual ekstasis together. Our common ground was our faith, our common goal was knowledge. I held Peter in high regard as an elder of my religion and it is in that capacity that many will miss him. He was a man who genuinely cared, took an interest in what people had to say but always held firm to his own views, not be swayed by the opinion of others. Strength of character is a quality many aspire to but something Peter had long since achieved.

To say he will be missed is to understate the obvious. He had been a friend, a father, a husband and an astounding individual. Hear now Peter, and remember...

Sink down, sink down, sink deeper and sink deep

Into eternal and primordial sleep.

Sink down, forget, be still and draw apart

Into the inner earth's most secret heart.

Drink the waters of Persephone,

The secret well beside the sacred tree.

I am that secret queen, Persephone,

All tides are mine, and answer unto me,

Tides of the airs, tides of the inner earth,

The secret silent tides of death and birth -

Tides of men's souls, and dreams, and destiny -

Isis veiled and Rhea, Binah Ge.