Ulcer – disease fatal to children and painful spot and abode of mortification.
Icelandic rune poem, Runic and Heroic Poems, Bruce Dickins

Kenaz - to imbue - Runes as Verbs, Season 6, What in the Wyrd, hosted by Kelley Harrell


Traditional meaning – torch, or ulcer
Association – fire, heat, inflammation, or inspiration that increases
Pronunciation – kehn-na, kehn-az
GaldrKehn, Kenuh, Kawn, Kawnuh, Kain, Kainuh
Element – fire
Dates – 13–28 September
Verb – to imbue
Animistic Qualities – imbuing our agency in a way that allows our inspiration to hone our calling
Challenge – To find supportive outlets to focus our inspiration

Listen to What in the Wyrd Episode 112 – Imbuing with Kenaz

Traditional lore – Kenaz represents something festering under the surface. Symbolized as faint light in bleak darkness or painful sores on the body, the imagery is that of a dynamic slowly becoming more lit, or more intolerable, and likely one that we’ve learned to grin and bear. With Kenaz that prodding blooms into an AHA moment!, which allows us freedom to focus what was needing to come to light, ro relief.

Animistic lore – Humaning well with Kenaz encompassse the ultimate fire human-persons feel, which is our calling. We feel it, though we don’t always know what to do with it, hot to express it. Through the recipe of Ansuz (soothsayer/to create) + Raidho (storytelling/to move) = Kenaz (lore/to imbue), we imbue our agency with our truth and bear it to the world, which is the calling we all share. And through our Kenaz experiences, we internalize that we have to keep revisiting our truth and calling to continue taking them deeper in how we live.

“Kenaz puts us front and center to both the enlightenment and the tension it brings to needed change in our lives.” Runic Book of Days

Elder Futhark runes Fehu, Ingwaz, Kenaz reversed with a white seashell on an orange background

Kenaz motivates us to imbue our truth with agency

to create the lore that guides the Descendants

Imbuing with Kenaz Introspections

  • How do you recognize your truth?
  • Where do you feel it in your body?
  • What guides you in focusing it?
  • How do your skills and talents align with your calling?
  • What lore are you leaving the Descendants?

Runic Book of Days

A Guide to Living the Annual Cycle of Rune Magick
2019 Nautilus Silver Award Winner
2019 National Indie Excellence Book Award Finalist
A step-by-step guide to working with the runes throughout the year through rituals and initiations to come into direct relationship with them.

Runic Book of Days - 2019 Nautilus Book Award Winner


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S. Kelley Harrell, M. Div.

I’m an animist, author, deathwalker and death doula. For the last 25 years, through Soul Intent Arts I’ve helped others to ethically build thriving spiritual paths as fit, embodied elders, who upon death become wise, capable Ancestors. My work is Nature-based, and focuses soul tending through the Elder Futhark runes, animism, ancestral healing, and deathwork. I’m author of Runic Book of Days, and I host the podcast, What in the Wyrd. I also write The Weekly Rune as a celebration of the Elder Futhark in season. Full bio.


elder well, die well, ancestor well


We don't heal in isolation,

but in community

~S. Kelley Harrell