O Crone who travels between the worlds,
help me to imagine!
How, o how, will this beautiful world
call me once again
I am the sheath of the sword. I am toothed, armed, and ready to bite. I have the power to defend, to keep women safe. I am not passive, accepting, ready to be filled. I am aware, watchful, ready to reject what I don’t want and to seize what I will.
Listen to me and I will tell you how safe we are, right now, in this moment. When we are secure, I am open and receptive, moist and inviting. When we feel threatened, I become cold and hard, hot and tight, irritated, and inflamed. If the danger goes on and on, I weep, I am overrun.
This summer, I made a Crone’s garden. Not with plants, but with fabric. In July, I found myself on a silent retreat entitled Gardens of the Spirit, at Woodbrooke, the Quaker College in Birmingham. I’d booked it months before, attracted mainly by the silence and the working method – I forgot all about the theme until the detailed information about the programme arrived a couple of weeks before. I was not pleased – I’d spent quite a lot of time in the previous six weeks trying to create some order in my own overgrown garden and the last thing I wanted was more gardening. Or so I thought.Read More
My talk today is like a bunch of flowers – which I offer to all of you. To quote the 16th Century French writer, Michel de Montaigne (1533 -1592) – “I have gathered a bunch of other men’s flowers & all that is mine is the thread that binds them”. Each poem I’ve chosen is a flower. The thread that binds them can be, in itself, an important thing and I believe that the Goddess gave me particular gifts in the areas of connecting, binding together and networking.Read More
The last article I wrote for the Goddess Pages in issue 14 was about my thoughts on entering menopause and the ‘magical dance’ that occurs during this time. Recently I have further considered the messages that this stage in my life has given me and wanted to update my thoughts and share them with you.Read More
For Witches, such as myself, Pagans and other followers of the Old Ways, Hallows (also known as Samhain or Halloween, among other names) marks the third, final harvest and a new year. It is a time of introspection, withdrawal and honoring the Goddesses known as “dark”, the Crone or Hag. As Winter draws near, we begin that journey down and within.Read More
A chance conversation on the 8th March reminded me again of something I had been stirred into writing after the last Glastonbury Goddess Conference where the maiden in us and the maidens among us were being lauded and applauded – yet something deep inside my soul, a kind of susurration, a frisson of discomfort, was rising to voice something then inarticulate.Read More
This April I turned sixty thus achieving cronehood, but I felt my journey began two years before in the summer of 2007, when what is known as my second Saturn return (Crone’s male counterpart) really kicked in; and boy did it kick in! Saturn returns are slow, grinding and thorough re-evaluations of our values and structures, often restrictive and lasting around two years.Read More
When we are mourning the recent loss of a beloved person, animal, object or situation, we often feel like hell. Frequently we feel that life isn’t worth living any more, that there is no point to life, that we’d rather die, that we’ll never stop feeling as miserable as we currently do, and that we’ll never get over the loss or feel happy again.Read More
I thought long and hard about whether to write this article; death is such an intimate, personal thing that I thought perhaps it would be a betrayal of my father, who I loved more dearly than I can ever say. And yet, when I think about the days and months before his death, about the honesty, openness, dignity, and humour with which he approached his final moment I know that he would say that it was ok.Read More