Explorations Into Liminality
“and there came an arm and a hand above the water and met it and caught it, and so shook it thrice and brandished it, and then vanished away the hand with the sword in the water.”

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Waves of Words for Wednesday


Leagues, leagues over the sea I sail
Couched on a wallowing dolphin's tail.

The sky is on fire, the waves a-sheen,
I dabble my foot in the billows green.

In a sea-weed hat on the rocks I sit,
where tern and sea-mew glide and beat,
and where dark shadows the cormorants meet.

In caverns cool when the tide's a wash,
I sound my conch to the watery splash.

From out their grottos at evenings beam,
the mermaids swim with locks agleam.

~Walter de la Mare

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

West Wind Words for Wednesday

Make me thy lyre, even as the forest is:

What if my leaves are falling like its own!

The tumult of thy mighty harmonies

Will take from both a deep, autumnal tone,

Sweet though in sadness. Be thou, Spirit fierce,

My spirit! Be thou me, impetuous one!

Drive my dead thoughts over the universe

Like wither'd leaves to quicken a new birth!

And, by the incantation of this verse,

Scatter, as from an unextinguish'd hearth

Ashes and sparks, my words among mankind!

Be through my lips to unawaken'd earth

The trumpet of a prophecy! O Wind,

If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?

~Ode to the West Wind


Friday, November 6, 2009

Chthonic Queen

The passing of thousands of years, so many variations on Her story and Her names, the Queen of the Underworld reigns as an evocative powerful divinity.

Persephone as we call her today, was known to the ancient Greeks who worshipped her as Pherophata, Phersephata, or Pherephassa. Commonly referred to at Eleusis by the name of her youth, Kore, she was "The Ineffable Maiden", and her temple at Eleusis was the Pherephation. To be ineffible is to be “inexpressible”, and “unutterable”. She is so sacred that her name cannot be spoken. She is so sacred that she cannot be described in words.

The Eleusinian Mysteries were the most important, revered, and secret sacred rites of the ancient Greek world. Initiation into the cult of Demeter and Persephone was a celebration of the cycle of life and death, the descent into the underworld and pursuant rebirth. This is a primal theme of human spiritual development following the turning of the seasons, the awe and magic threading people and the planet together. Grain is at the center of the Eleusinian Mysteries (Demeter is loosely translated like grain mother), and depictions of such on vases and mentions in snips of text support this theme.

Few written accounts exist of the mysteries, and certainly nothing in entirety. From fragments of text and pottery, it is believed that the celebrations began by Cleansing in the sea, followed by the Procession to Eleusis from a cemetery in Athens. Upon gaining Eleusis, Fasting which was broken with a brew of barley and pennyroyal, kykeon. (There has of course been suggestions as to the psychedelic content of this drink, because sometimes scholars lack the spiritual understanding of attaining a mystical state of mind without it, or because modern day folks have a hard time appreciating the role said pharmacopeia has had in such rites, and accepting or honoring any authenticity of them. Take your pick of my opinions!) Initiates were shown the secret contents of the kiste (a box holding sacred objects), of which they meditated on, then placed in the kalathos (basket).

It is accepted that there were the Lesser Mysteries, and the Greater Mysteries, and that the rites consisted of 3 phases; things done (like a dramatization), things shown (like the sacred items), and things said (like vows). Together these things were the Unrepeatables, and the penalty for ignoring their name was death. Hence the lack of written materials on these mysteries.

The culmination of the rites is said to have been the attainment of the knowledge of the divinity within. The initiate understands the connection of life and death, and is elevated spiritually.

The Persephone myth has been transported through time, on the tips of many tongues and the nibs of many pens. It seems to me like it’s been carried far enough away from original intentions, as happens over the centuries when gods rise and goddesses fall. Perhaps further understanding of the Grotta Carusa cave at Locria, Italy, or further excavations of the Demeter and Persephone Sactuary at Wadi bel Gadir in Libya, will provide some stellar finds and interesting insight into the cult of the Eleusinian Mysteries.

Kore was a child of Demeter and Zeus, destined to be the bride of Hades in a time when there was not so much fear and evil associated with the Underworld rulers. Not stolen away and raped, but honored and esteemed in the Sacred Marriage, the bright and beautiful side who balances above and below with love. She descended, and her Kore maiden self died, as is the course of puberty into adulthood, and to the marriage-bed. Certainly her mother wept for the loss of her little girl. But, Persephone’s queenly self was reborn as a Chthonic deity, and eventually she ascended, carrying seeds and blessings for the return of spring.

Did she not give the greatest gift, the offering of herself as sacrifice for the people, that they may understand the sacred circle which all must walk…live, die, and live again? It’s her darkening time again, once more she makes her descent, leaving the company of her mother Demeter for the embrace of the Chthonic King. The souls of the waiting dead have missed her, and all know She-Who-Comes-Again will walk the circle soon enough.

So break open a pomegranate and raise a glass. Hail Persephone!

Ode to Persephone Witch Hat and Persephone dreaming Necklace found at my Etsy shop

Monday, November 2, 2009

Witch on Wheels

Witches in the world never cease to amaze me.

I was in the company of many of them on Friday, fortune be mine, and I wanted to share my great good luck in meeting one in particular. With the full moon at hand and my Cancerian nature being pulled into customary lunacy, I was flying off my broom handle and in rare form vending at the Spiral Dance ritual. I shared my table with someone who was organized and calm in the midst of my maelstrom of madness, but despite the disparate energies we brought, we got along fabulously and found fun and common ground at what turned out to be a less than monetarily abundant event.

Witch Rebecca made these poppets, Dammit Dolls.
Ferociously charming creatures. She was also selling mini witch hats and crocheted wacky adorable beanies for friends.

She drove up in her Witchmobile, all eyes riveted with fascination and barely-veiled covetousness (you must click on that link and see all for yourself!). She oozed great style and artistic precision, if you can imagine.

What I didn't find out until a couple of days later, is that she *made* the Witchmobile, and it is not her only automotive creation. She also constructed Carthedral.

This is just one amazing photo, and you will be all the poorer if you do not view all of them on her website. I am utterly flabbergasted and delighted to the point of jumping up and down. Repeatedly.

Rebecca Caldwell just began a blog and she is off to an amazing start. Check her out. Look her up. She oozes witchy feminine creative girl power, and you will be inspired.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Halloween Wanna Be

I only ever wear a witch hat for Halloween. Well, I mean, I wear clothes too, not *just* a witch hat, but I don't dress up like something or someone else. I am what I am, and donning my favorite pointy hat is really all I can do these recent years.

But if I were to get to be someone else for a night, it would have to be the one and only Kate Bush. If you don't know Kate, I have no idea how to introduce you. Not everyone *gets* Kate. But those who do, well...we're never the same.

{Let me just say here, that if you do not like Kate, DO NOT tell me. I seriously don't want to know this about you. If you do love Kate, we're bff's and don't you know it.}

Kate loves to play dress up, and here are some costumes I could choose from for my Night-of-Being-Kate:

This image stuck with me really early on, and I actually have a tattoo that was inspired by Bat-Kate.

But I already have a pointy hat...

Yes, love this hat to death.

Love me some chain maille.


Forest Fairy. Yeah, that'll work.

But the Kate I think I'd like to be this year is in the following video. Come to think of it, this would be a gorgeous way to meet her if you haven't made Kate's acquaintance already.

Enjoy The Sensual World...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Felicitous Feather Friends

A huge hug of gratitude to every witch who parked their brooms on my doorstep for my Halloween party- I love all your comments and had a blast visiting your house and listening to your stories and eating your bat-wing cupcakes.

New friends and blogs to follow, and the winners of my Giveaway to announce. I was so delighted by the abundance of visitors that I decided the right thing to do would be to give away more than one Feather Pendant. I will be creating each one for the winner individually, to make them extra special.

And the Felicitous Feather Friends are:

***CONGRATS you wonderful witches!***

I'll be contacting everyone to get your goodies to you.

If you didn't win this time, don't be too forlorn- I will definitely be having a Yule giveaway for you to try to get into Fortuna's good graces.

AND I've offered a pendant for Mrs. B's 31 Days of Halloween celebration (day 28), so check out her blog for that and all sorts of awesomeness.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Welcome Witches!

Did Vanessa from A Fanciful Twist send you? Ah, she's a winsome lass to hostess a progressive fete such as this!

Well come and merry meet indeed. I'm delighted you could stop by for a visit and certainly hope you drop in again soon; feel free to leave your broom by the door.

Glad you found my house- no, I don't live in Kansas but as you can see I am somewhere over the rainbow.

I hope you like my party invitation...
...you can see I started donning the pointy hat at a very early age.

And I haven't stopped since.

If you are a sister-collector or lover of Witch Hats, you simply must read my post about these fashionable and ancient forms of headdress.

Since this is the first time you've been to a gathering at my house, I think a tour around is in order. I'm a year-round spooky girl, with silver spider-web curtains, kitchen witches, and fey collections everywhere.

Do you like my nose goblin tissue box? All hail Brian Froud, thankyouverymuch.

When I tell people my living room is held together with duct tape and decorated with crayon, I don't think they believe me. My two year old is quite clever. Ahem.

I have an obsession with a graphic collage I made, Ode to Elphaba. Check out the purse. You can answer the age-old question, "Are you a good witch...or a bad witch?" Guess which side gets virtually no action.

My magical inclination and need for clutter are genetic, apparently. My poor lads.

Here we are at my studio. Seriously, you are only allowed to look at the door and this one corner I have tidied and fixed up. The rest is functional, not pretty or even interesting ;P

I always have some witchiness on this dresser, though there's also usually a huge vase filled with the foliage I use to embellish my hats. I don't keep a serious ritual altar out, the essentials are tucked away in a picnic basket, very much like Dorothy's.

I do collect a doll or two...

My coven sister and I selling our wicked wee hearts out :D

Here's Maleficent, for my sister-witch devotees...

What? You have to fly off? Many other parties to attend...I know, I didn't even serve tea or cakes. But I was just so excited you popped in and there's so much I wanted to share {sigh}.
Well, don't forget your goody-bag!

What's in it? Why, a GIVEAWAY of course!
Yes indeed, I'll be giving away a beautiful feather pendant like the ones in my shop...all you have to do is leave a comment today and let me know you want to be entered, and have an accessible blog profile. For two entries, go ahead and follow my blog (I promise, I won't bite...too hard, at least). The winner will be announced on Monday the 19th.

Loved having you...merry part, and merry meet again!

Listen! The wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves, we have had our summer evenings, now for October eves!

~Humbert Wolfe

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wellaway Words for Wednesday

Pale, beyond porch and portal,
Crowned with calm leaves, she stands
Who gathers all things mortal
With cold immortal hands;
Her languid lips are sweeter
Than love's who fears to greet her
To men that mix and meet her
From many times and lands.

Algernon Charles Swinburne 1837-1909, The Garden of Proserpine

The Secret of Beauty Circlet

Persephone Dreaming Necklace

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wyvern Words for Wednesday

The Powers whose name and shape no living creature knows
Have pulled the Immortal Rose;
And though the Seven Lights bowed in their dance and wept,
The Polar Dragon slept,
His heavy rings uncoiled from glimmering deep to deep:
When will he wake from sleep?

Great Powers of falling wave and wind and windy fire,
With your harmonious choir
Encircle her I love and sing her into peace,
That my old care may cease;
Unfold your flaming wings and cover out of sight
The nets of day and night.

Dim Powers of drowsy thought, let her no longer be
Like the pale cup of the sea,
When winds have gathered and sun and moon burned dim
Above its cloudy rim;
But let a gentle silence wrought with music flow
Whither her footsteps go.

~ William Butler Yeats