February, named for the ancient purifying carnivals in Rome. Virile young men ran naked through the city, carrying strips of bloody goat flesh. As they ran they would pass royal ladies and slap them with the bloody strips, imparting fertility. Ostensibly, the women were joyous at the lashings, believing they would help them become pregnant. The straps were called februas, the source of the name of the month.

How ironic it is that ancient peoples sought so much to increase fertility and create new life, while in this time entire relationships shudder at its possibility.

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