Saturday, September 18, 2010

My Take-Home from the Ren Faire

Seemed quite appropriate for Autumn, and it made me think of Anne.

Here's what the artist says about vultures:

Saturday Poetry Bloging

Pale Hekate

Pale Hekate has come to the garden
called by our pomegranate offering
beneath the shadowed hedge.
Her hands rake a trail of death,
dying in a spiral
bedded into the earth.

In her wake, the mint sprigs emerge,
luscious and renewed.
Green children offering grace
at the feet of death.

~Jacinta Cross

Picture found here.

So, Apparently, I Don't Get Invited to the Really Cool Parties

watertiger has the goods.

Batshit insane Teabagger candidate for Senate Christine O'Donnell (best known for being violently anti-mastrubation) claims to have "dabbled into witchcraft."

O’DONNELL: I dabbled into witchcraft — I never joined a coven. But I did, I did. … I dabbled into witchcraft. I hung around people who were doing these things. I’m not making this stuff up. I know what they told me they do. [...]

One of my first dates with a witch was on a satanic alter, and I didn’t know it. I mean, there’s little blood there and stuff like that. … We went to a movie and then had a midnight picnic on a satanic alter.

I wish she'd leave us out of her insane clown posse of things that go bump in the night. Don't even get me started on "alter" vs. "altar." I agree w/ watertiger: O'Donnell's lying, something that her religion pretends to consider evil.

(I know Andrew Sullivan reported the other day that O'Donnell's sister claims to have checked out Wicca along w/ every other religion in the universe. I'm not giving Sullivan a link. But it's an interesting family, apparently.)

Picture (of another wingnut) found here.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Taking G/Son, Tomorrow, to the RenFaire

My only real objectives are to listen to bagpipes and to get him in the kilts of his mama's Scottish ancestors.

Last year, we walked in, he on his fadder's shoulders, and he looked at the pennants a-flying, and said, "Oh, Nonna. Isn't it so beautiful?"


Thursday, September 16, 2010


Liberation tried to commit suicide when he was seventeen. Things got even worse before they got better. He was married to Terror for nearly ten years. One day, when he was wandering famished and half-crazy in the mountains, he bumped into Ecstasy. Ecstasy wept to be reunited with his old friend and taught Liberation a simple prayer. After that Liberation was free to leave Terror.

~from The Book of Qualities by J. Ruth Gendler

Is it terror that stands between us and our liberation, or is it boredom? Are they two sides of the same mask?

Picture found here

How It's Done

Here's a wonderful article on an upcoming Pagan Pride event.

Both the author of the article and the spokesperson for the event get a lot right. Note the use of capital letters for the words "Pagan" as well as for specific Pagan religions. Also note how the spokesperson conveys that Paganism is a minority religion w/o sounding at all defensive or perpetuating ugly stereotypes.

Kudos to both.

Other Pagan Pride organizers would do well to print this out and do likewise.

Picture found here.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A Children's Book About Good Witches

I would read this to G/Son.

Don't Pretend

If you're going to charge for spells in Canada, you'd better not be "pretending."

Completely unenforceable law. Discriminatory. What if someone charges for praying to Jesus or St. Anthony? The fact that the law is seldom enforced, but can suddenly be used when police like is a problem.

Come on, Canada. You can do better.

People Keep Doing It. I'm Going to Keep Complaining About It.

Yet again, we see how people are blind to simple rules of capitalization. The examples in the very same sentence are particularly striking.


There's just a whole world full of FAIL here.

I Am So There

Hat tip: First Draft

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Put Down that Computer, Young Lady, and Go Outside

In the end, you are either connected to your landbase or you are not. You either have a personal relationship with your watershed or you do not. Those things take time.

You can buy all the books and athames and tarot decks and Celtic-knot gimgraws and plasticene statues of Goddesses in the world. You can go to festivals, you can take on-line courses, you can wear t-shirts with air-brushed pictures of wolves under a full Moon, and you can dress like a RenFaire refugee 24/7. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) But those things won't make you a practicing member of a nature religion.

Just saying.

What did you do to "practice" your religion today?

Picture found here.

Monday, September 13, 2010

So I Guess the Real Point Was to Get to Say: "Kenyan!"

Other anti-colonialists:

George Washington
Thomas Jefferson
John Adams
Everyone who signed underneath the words: Our Lives, Our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor
J. Ann Tickner
Cynthia Enloe
bell hooks
The People of Cyprus
The People of Greece
The Poles
The Russians who resisted Hitler
The People of Algeria
Albert Raymond Forbes Webber

You get the idea.

Picture found here.

People Keep Doing It. I'm Going to Keep Complaining About It.

Count the mistakes, girls and boys. Extra points if you list them in comments.

Whooo, baby. This is like a compendium of how not to do it.

And, by the way, there are many religions that are not xian that also are not Pagan. I'm thinking Judaism, Islam, Latter Day Saints, Eckanar, etc., etc., etc. Spouting misinformation is no way to "clear up the misconceptions about [P]aganism."

Picture found here.

Update, kudos to Greta Cuyler: 610-371-5042 or for understanding the rules of capitalization. It's not her fault that people who should know better go around announcing, "We're not Satanists," thereby causing everyone in the room to think of an elephant.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

All Acts of Love and Pleasure Are Rituals of the Goddess

You know those things that you're convinced that, if you ever said them out loud, people would really consider you crazy? (Come on, yes you do.)

I adore hands. I do. They're the first thing that I notice about a person and I'm a huge sucker for hands with character. (If you had sex in the sixties, you know what I mean. Sweet Mother.) The sight of a wrist just below the rolled cuffs of a chambray shirt. Bracelets. Rings. Hands are what I look at first in a portrait or photograph and I can get weepy with joy at the sight of old hands with swollen joints knitting, petting a cat, holding a grandchild, wielding a wand. Babies' hands with dimples at each finger. The hands of a friend pouring wine, handing me pickles and cheese, massaging my shoulders. My own hands at work, typing legal prose, hour after hour, knitting a warm sweater for someone I love, pouring libations onto my altar rock, pulling weeds out of my garden, raised in a dance of benediction for my landbase. A moot court judge once told me that I used my hands too much. He was wrong. I love hands.

Yes, I agree, anyone who would say such things, out-loud, must be a batshit crazy old woman. Guilty, as charged.

Right now, my hands reek of pesto. I can smell them even all the way from the keyboard to my nose, can smell the garlic, basil, olive oil, Parmesan, slight vanilla of pine nuts. And, as much as I love hands, I really, really love scented hands, even my own. I love the way that hands smell after rinsing sage oil through hair, after massaging sore muscles with eucalyptus oil, after rubbing a baby's freshly-bathed body with lavender oil to induce sleep. I love the way that my own hands smell earthy after weeding for hours. I love the way that my own hands smell like apples and curry when I make acorn squash soup. I love the way that my sun-spotted hands, the hands of a priestess, smell when I've waved incense over the body of a sister Witch about to go into surgery. I love the way that my hands smell of lemons and lavender when I make the lavender-lemon-aide-martinis that have marked this Summer for me. And, just now, I love the way that my hands smell of pesto, the harvest of my herb bed, in-gathered on this almost-cool, rainy, early Autumn day, captured and frozen in ice-cube-tray-sized portions to be enjoyed all Winter.

In the frozen days of January, when the ground is hard and the air smells only of minerals and cold, and in the dark, grey days of February, when I am longing for the taste of green, the scent of anything growing, the sight of a sprout, I will thaw the pesto, serve it on steaming pasta, and remember how sacred my hands smelled, redolent of this harvest.

May it be so for you.

Picture found here

Sunday Dance Blogging

Beatrix Potter had a relationship with nature (based largely on prolonged observation) that many modern Pagans could envy.

Beatrix Potter’s artistic pursuits began in her youth. She was a keen witness of the world around her. As an artist, she was largely self-taught, relying on her powers of observation and honed by the dedicated copying of works. She sketched landscapes, flowers, fossils, as well as animals and other subjects from the natural world. Potter worked in a broad spectrum of media including watercolor, pen and ink, and pencil, and experimented in oils and with print-making. Like her father, she was an early practitioner of the art of photography. Beatrix Potter’s work is characterized by delicacy and great attention to detail.

At the age of 21 Potter began a scientific study of fungus. Charles McIntosh, the ‘Perthshire Naturalist,’ guided her in her work. After more than 13 years, she developed a theory on the germination of spores which, though rejected by the scientific establishment of the day, is today recognized as being ahead of its time.

In 1902, at the age of 36, Beatrix Potter published her first book, The Tale of Peter Rabbit. She produced 28 books in her lifetime, including the 23 little Tales, which are all still in print today. These books have sold 150 million copies and have been translated into more than 35 languages.

By the time she had reached her 40th birthday, Beatrix Potter had acquired Hill Top, her first farm in England’s Lake District. This became a quiet refuge for her work. Over the remaining years of her life she became a respected local farmer, landowner, and sheep breeder. She keenly promoted the traditional farming methods and ways of life, which she knew to be essential to the preservation of the beautiful, wild environment of the Lakes.

More here.

Her works for children go in and out of fashion, sometimes considered too quaint, twee, anthropomorphic. But she does a good job of introducing children to the idea of a natural world beyond their windows and to the concept that animals, too, have wants, desires, motivations.

Did you read her? As a child? As a grown-up to your own children?