For the week of 20 December 2020


Jera is the half-month stave through 28 December. Perthro reversed is the intuitive rune, and Nauthiz indicates Voice’s message to us. Read right to left is Jera, Perthro reversed, then Nauthiz. This Baltic amber rune set was created by The Witches Corner.

I truly believe that #theweeklyrune includes the keys to making better choices based on keen insight into the present, to help each of us be more active in creating a better life for us all. That realization process includes learning to tend what can’t just be fixed, and using every tool at our disposal. The runes are such a tool, and in the Old Norse tradition, this process is wyrdweaving at it deepest potential. The runes provide one way we can create ourselves as fit elders, so that upon our good death, we can be well Ancestors.

This is the paid version of The Weekly Rune.  Every Winter Solstice I share the full runecast for free. Receive the full, ad-free, detailed version every Sunday by joining my private runes community at Patreon.

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  • galdr of the runecast, with sound files and instruction on how to use each sound
  • live video sessions
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What’s a half-month rune?

“Half-month” is an astronomical concept in which each month is divided into two parts: days 1-15, then 16-month’s end. In terms of the runic calendar, each half-month rune is one of the 24 runes of the Elder Futhark, and governs for a tad over two weeks (14 and 1/4 days, or a fortnight).

Learn More

The Weekly Rune is a three-rune cast. Those runes are the half-month, the intuitive rune, and the overview. The half-month is a set rune, which for the most part follows the traditional ordering of the Elder Futhark. The intuitive stave (meaning, I draw it blind) indicates the life force most available to us, to the focus of the half-month rune into sharper focus. It suggests how we can best handle the half-month energies. The final rune (also drawn blind) provides a high overview of the current time, and speaks from different voices. These voices have been Nature, Earth, Creation, though are sometimes others. I note who’s speaking each week, as it is revealed.


New to The Weekly Rune?

  • Catch a couple of my IGTV videos, which explain the intention and process behind the runecast, and what makes it different from other ways of casting.
  • Listen to my What in the Wyrd podcast, which is available across all popular podcast platforms, including Google Play and  iTunes.
  • A few people have asked the reason that I switch between different rune sets for TWR. The short answer is: because. The more nuanced answer is, I ask which sets wants to speak each week. I don’t assume the same elements are in play according to the timing of the runes; I also don’t assume the same elements of my runes are appropriate to speak each week. I did a podcast on this subject, so there’s more info there. (See above)
  • Also, for deep work on coming into relationship with the runes in season, check out my book, Runic Book of Days.

The Runecast

Jera is the rune of harvest. It comes at the point that we know what we have to work with for the rest of the year, and we’re to assess how it got there and how to go forward with it. This year’s examination of harvest with Solstice is a bit different than usual. In the North we approach Winter Solstice, while the South verges into Summer Solstice. Solstices always herald points of standstill, not dissimilar to that of Isa. They are uncomfortable, precious, and powerful. They bring moments of introspection and assessment unlike any of the rest of the year, which makes our time of harvest a bit more concentrated, too. 

Learn more about this seasonal progression, and how to draw its insights into the personal spiritual path in Runic Book of Days.

What does it mean?

Jera usually heralds both celebration and planning. It’s the culmination point of a job well-done, learning curves, tweaks, projections for next harvest, and enjoying the spoils. We can do all of that this year, this Solstice, though the framing runes of this cast show a lot of caution. They’re not saying not to do those things; rather, they suggest we engage them more gently than usual. 

That feels weird to say, given the upheaval in the human psyche right now. Colonization has us pathologically buckle down when questions of productivity and planning arise. That is how we measure and ensure progress. And I would imagine to Ancestors who looked to Solstice with both rapture and fear, it would engender feelings of survival and hope, as well. Survival and productivity can feel a lot alike even though they aren’t, and it’s really important for this Solstice that we engage both functionally. That means we have to engage them in direct relationship to make the best use of all the elements that will be in play at this time.

I’m not an astrologer, so go read all your stellar folx who are solid in relaying what this Solstice brings. In short: a lot of big shit. We have big relationships in outer planets, our vantage point of them, our dance with our own sun, and an eclipse happening all within hours of each other. Damn straight that affects things. Where these runes give commentary is on both being in direct relationship with what’s happening this season, with the season itself, yet holding it all loosely enough not to lose our emotional selves in what it all brings up. I’m not about to suggest that any of that is easy to do. Tis the season to keep the Dream Team on speed dial, and actually make those calls as needed. Give self the support that’s warranted.

Perthro reversed is where interesting flavor comes in this cast. Perthro is the rune of chance. Maybe. Probably. Definitely, but who knows? It’s the rune of understanding most if not all the parameters of a dynamic, yet not knowing which one will actually present, and having little if no control over any of it. That’s the part addressing to hold things gently. We can allow the usual business of harvest to unfold, though we need to be more mindful about it, more embodied in how we move with it.

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The relationship between Perthro reversed and Nauthiz is most telling. Where Jera is often about observation and electing how to go forward on that intel, this year we aren’t given quite the free rein with that, as we’re accustomed. With the reversed Perthro we understand that what we can control we have, and we let it go. We live in the moment of having set it all up the best way we can, then getting out of the way of the momentum that creates. For this experience of Jera, that means unplanning. Do what we can, and walk away. But not in the sense of gnashing of teeth, hoping beyond all hope our outcome manifests. Do the thing and let it go. Be Self. Be embodied so fully that however it turns out is Self.

That synergy (relationship) between outcome and Self comes in with Nauthiz. This rune can’t be reversed, so buckle up. It’s on. Through the life force of Voice, Nauthiz speaks to us about fulfilling needs, and that over this Solstice (and all its stellar events) is an ideal time to clarify them. Sing to learn need, to express need. Tell the story of Self to align with need. It doesn’t have to be literal voice. It can be any expression that liberates, that empowers. The act of getting out of the inner cosmology and moved into the community sphere–however that’s needed–is what’s called for here.

To understand what we need in this present, we have to be willing to examine it and how we got here. We have all year to figure out where it goes from here, but for now, under these seasonal alignments, this is how we regain our power. This is how we meet our own needs (and by doing so unburden the collective). This is how we sing who we are into All Things, and by doing so embodied and with care, feel its resonance carry us to the next growing season.

Half-month Rune Prompts

  • What facilitates your ability to gently plan?
  • What complicates it?
  • How do you voice what’s needed to embody yourself?


The way that I use galdr is through chanting. I find repetition of the base phonetic helps me feel the rune. Remember that the Elder Futhark isn’t a language. It was originally an alphabet, incorporated into mythical origin. It functions phonetically, both in spelling and pronunciation. Given that, galdr isn’t terribly different from the overall pronunciation, and the emphasis is on the intention of the chant, not so much the pronunciation.

My personal emphasis in galdr is on the vowels initially and I incorporate the consonants later. For instance, with Ansuz, I focus on ‘ahw-oo,’ before incorporating the middle ‘n,’ such as ‘ahwnsoo.’ There is no right or wrong with galdr (although I guess there could be a flat-out wrong?), though often the final consonants aren’t pronounced, as in ‘ahwsoo.’ Practice galdring different ways, and go with the way that you feel in your body. 

  • Jera – Yer, Yeruh, Yair, Yairuh, Yer/Yairaw
  • Perthro – Pair, Pairth, Per, Perth
  • Nauthiz – Now, Nowdth, Nowdthee

For suggestions on how to weather the season gracefully, subscribe to my private runes community on Patreon.


Originally published on Soul Intent Arts.

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.

#beyourcommunity ~ #youareecosystem

elder well, die well, ancestor well


Elder Well

To bear your unique gift to the world.

Die Well

To leave the planet better than you found it.

Ancestor Well

So that your descendants never elder alone.