Ride, ride, ride over the sand
the sun is setting behind Arnarfell.
Round here there are many evil spirits
’cause it’s getting dark on the glacier
Lord, lead my horse,
the last part of the way will be hard

Tssh, sssh! Tssh, sssh! On the (small) hill a fox ran
her dry mouth she wants to wet with blood;
or perhaps someone was calling
with a strangely dark male voice.
Outlaws in Ódáðahraun
are maybe rounding up some sheep secretly

Ride, ride, ride over the sand
There’s getting dark on Herðubreið.
The elf queen is bridling her horse.
There’s not good to meet her
My best horse I would give to
reach Kiðagil

Icelandic Folk Song

The Sabbat Song

August 23, 2017

Sleep is waking, waking sleep
we ride the broom across the deep,
fair is foul and foul is fair
by bee and cat, by hound and hare,
the living die and the dying live
we turn the shears and the sieve,
light is darkness, darkness light
to farers through the mystic night,
up is down and down is up
to seekers of the cauldron-cup,
lords are churls and churls are lords
we leap across the bridge of swords,
birth is death and death is birth
we tread the paths beneath the earth,
bride is hag and hag is bride
between the times we rage and ride,
day is night and night is day
for farers on the witching way.

Nigel Aldcroft Jackson
The Call of the Horned Piper

a prostitute-witch

August 23, 2017

The ancient Roman poet Horace provides one of the oldest references to a witch’s book. This appears in his work titled The Epodes, which contains a tale of the witch known as Canidia. Horace describes an encounter with a witch who possesses a book containing magical incantations. He tells us that by the use of this book, witches can call down the moon from the night sky. Historian Owen Davies ( in “Grimoires: A History of Magic Books”, Oxford University Press, 2009), comments that Horace depicts Canidia as a prostitute-witch. He goes on to say that “high-class prostitutes” of the period were known to be literate. Davies remarks that they could have possessed books containing spells. He concludes there is no reason to assume that literate women of the period were less likely to use grimoires than were men.

Raven Grimassi
Old World Witchcraft: ancient ways for modern days

A child is so strong. A child is the strongest creature on earth. A child is integrated, is its own. A child needs no loved one to share the experiencing of beauty, yet has always the underlying certainty that sharing would be easily achieved if need arose: that there is, in fact, no involuntary aloneness.

For some people, growing-up is largely a matter of the death of this certainty. A sudden death, perhaps, or perhaps a very lingering affair.

Frances Bellerby
The Little Lamps

23rd August


A world of words arriving in my head like fragments of burning shrapnel. It is too much, at times – more than this poor soul can stand.

My sister on the telephone, Monday afternoon. She has quit her job. She is depressed because of her outstanding credit card bill, which she had hoped to clear before parting company with her present employer. This call was soon followed by another from my ancient aunt who wants only to discuss my moral transgressions, or so it seems. She, apparently, has seen Peedeel’s blog.

‘Filth,’ she declares. She promulgates such tedious opinions with ease. ‘The ungoverned libido,’ says she, ‘is bound to have a wrecking influence – ’

But that’s exactly the point of the blog: to challenge moral complacency. ‘And, anyway, auntie, things sexual by nature only appear at weekends, as a general rule. A time when most people are either partying or fornicating – not reading blogs! The remainder of the week, I’m hoping to introduce readers to new poets or new ideas. Culture – ’

The old lady gleefully paraphrases my life story from my disastrous first marriage through to my current ménage. She takes such delight in sleazy detail. Could there exist an element of jealousy in her recriminations? I can only quote Larkin in response:

“the wonderful feel of girls” is to blame –

‘It strikes me that you are easily propelled into stupidity by the passing of time, Peedeel – ’

And, yes, she is probably correct.


To the ancient Roman’s the hare was a symbol of fertility, abundance, sexuality, lust and excess.

In their myths and folktales the Celts believed the hare had links to the ‘Otherworld’, that mysterious place of spirit and the supernatural. They believed that the Goddess Eostre’s favourite animal and attendant spirit was the hare.

The girls have sown an image of a hare on my fancy-dress party outfit. Do they dedicate me to Eostre or to lust and excess?


I really do feel in need of a break. I’ve suggested a weekend away. The Gloucestershire village of Wotton-under-Edge springs to mind. The girls have never heard of the place. But the Ram Inn is considered Britain’s most haunted hotel! It’s closed as an Inn, but on occasion the owners give guided tours –

Oh, to walk those wonky floors, those steep narrow staircases, the bewildering, shadow-filled passageways, to look out of the cobwebby windows, watched over by the unseen residents! It is a possibility devoutly to be wished for.

We will see.