I've posted this poem before, but I love it so much, and it's been on my mind today. So here it is again:
The Bear's Daughter by Theodora Goss
She dreams of the south. Wandering through the silent castle, Where snow has covered the parapets, and the windows Are covered with frost, like panes of isinglass, She dreams of pomegranates and olive trees.
But to be the bear's daughter is to be a daughter, as well, Of the north. To have forgotten a time before The tips of her fingers were blue, before her veins Were blue like rivers flowing through fields of ice.
To have forgotten a time before her boots Were elk-leather lined with ermine.
Somewhere in the silent castle, her mother is sleeping In the bear's embrace, and breathing pomegranates Into his fur. She is a daughter of the south, With hair like honey and skin like orange-flowers.
She is a nightingale's song in the olive groves.
And her daughter, wandering through the empty garden, Where the branches of yew trees rubbing against each other Sound like broken violins,
Dreams of the south while a cold wind sways the privet, Takes off her gloves, which are lined with ermine, and places Her hands on the rim of the fountain, in which the sun Has scattered its colors, like roses trapped in ice.
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 . . . ."