Here's a nicely-written, matter-of-fact article about a group of Wiccans trying to save a magnolia tree in Asheville, North Carolina. Other than the "only in Asheville" opening line and the confusion about the relationship between Wicca and Paganism (Hint for Reporters: Wicca is to Paganism as Lutheran is to Protestant), the article does a good job on reporting both sides of this issue.
The article also avoids the almost-universal traps of reporting on Wiccca: (1) getting some hateful xian to comment "for balance" and (2) noting, in all seriousness, that Wiccans "say" that they don't worship the devil.
Good luck to Oldenwilde. I hope that they're able to save that tree.
Here's a poem for them:
WOODMAN, spare that tree!
Touch not a single bough! In youth it sheltered me, And I'll protect it now. 'Twas my forefather's hand That placed it near his cot; There, woodman, let it stand, Thy axe shall harm it not!
That old familiar tree, Whose glory and renown Are spread o'er land and sea, And wouldst thou hew it down? Woodman, forbear thy stroke! Cut not its earth-bound ties; O, spare that aged oak, Now towering to the skies!
When but an idle boy I sought its grateful shade; In all their gushing joy Here too my sisters played. My mother kissed me here; My father pressed my hand -- Forgive this foolish tear, But let that old oak stand!
My heart-strings round thee cling, Close as thy bark, old friend! Here shall the wild-bird sing, And still thy branches bend. Old tree! the storm still brave! And, woodman, leave the spot; While I've a hand to save, Thy axe shall hurt it not.
I'm a woman, a Witch, a mother, a grandmother, an eco-feminist, a gardener, a reader, a writer, and a priestess of the Great Mother Earth. Hecate appears in the
Homeric Ode to Demeter, which tells of Hades who caught Persophone
"up reluctant on his golden car and bare her away lamenting. . . . But no one, either of the deathless gods or of mortal men, heard her voice, nor yet the olive-trees bearing rich fruit: only tenderhearted Hecate, bright-coiffed, the daughter of Persaeus, heard the girl from her cave . . . ."