Advice to a new writer

October 16, 2017

Write. A lot. Make room for it at least 5 days a week. Make your life bend to your desire to write. Write what you want to write, not what you feel you should write. Creating and editing are two different steps. Don’t confuse them. I think a lot of aspiring writers stop themselves at the gate, judging their words as soon as they’ve put them on the page or even before they get to the page. If you truly want to write whole books, you have to get that hypercritical voice out of the room long enough to write a first draft.

Lily King
Interview with Niki Johnson in Superstition Review issue fall 2015

my beautiful Yoni

October 15, 2017

yoni steaming for you

Warm steam arises from a sweet crevasse beneath me. It gently warms my yoni and invites her so sweetly to open. Like a rose petal, blossoming, she awakens and becomes receptive to the medicine that is entering her. Sacred flowers and herbs, meticulously picked and boiled for this ancient ritual. Time taken from my modern day swirl to drop in…to be…to breathe. Space allowed to focus all my attention on my beautiful Yoni (ancient Hindu word for ‘sacred womb gateway, vagina’).

Some go to church, yoga, dance…I go to my Yoni Temple every Sunday morning and pray. I have made this ceremony apart of my weekly regime (excluding moon-time) and set aside this sacred space to Remember and Honour my own and the Great Cosmic Womb, which births and creates All into being.

Alila Grace
Eleven reasons why steaming your Yoni will change your life


Many of the core attributes of shamanism described by Mircea Eliade (and by many anthropologists since) find resonance in the practices of pre-modern witches. Through a variety of methods – including ingestion of psychotropic plants and mushrooms, fasting, dance, illness, sensory deprivation – the shaman falls into an ecstatic trance. His/her body is left in a cataleptic state, whilst their consciousness is removed elsewhere, always with the aid of a totem animal. The shaman’s consciousness either becomes the animal or is guided by an animal during their out of body experience, enabling them to travel to a variety of metaphysical realms and bring back the required, or sought information. During these ecstasies, the shaman is able to encounter other shamans (both friendly and hostile), who similarly disassociate their consciousness from their physical selves. These are the basic components of the witches’ ecstasies described through the medium of their Christian persecutors. Whether these visionary episodes were remnants of pre-Christian Eurasian shamanism, or whether they were diffused from marginal societies in parts of Scandinavia, Eastern Europe and Siberia, where shamanism survived (in various forms) throughout the period, remains equivocal. But the ontological correlations strongly suggest that there was a medieval and Early Modern heretical witch cult in many parts of Europe, existing beneath the prevailing Christian orthodoxy, which utilised aspects of shamanism as its modus operandi.

Neil Rushton
Faerie Familiars and Zoomorphic witches

My first ejaculation was a terrible shock. Like a seizure. An unexpected and terrible ripping of reality. Electrical currents in blue and gold sending spastic spasms of pleasure up me vertebrae; skull crushed in a vise in those first few seconds. Those never to be forgotten throbbing, animal convulsions and my head filling with white noise…

Neurological eruption!


October 13, 2017

I watch the birds, black headed gulls,
rooks and solitary crows,
heads cocked, a momentary lull
in their raucous cacophony.

They listen for the rumbling
of worms turning underground,
leatherjackets tumbling
through the whispering sounds
of complaining roots

protesting at the unseemly speed
and heavy tread of the luminous
orange centipede
as she flees the hideous
devouring beaks.

Deaf to this turmoil,
afraid to delve beneath the surface
of the deep dark soil,
you cannot see the secret places
hidden in your heart.

Seated high in my vertiginous tree
like a succubus grafted onto bark,
I see you watching me,
lusting after my luscious, dark,
venomous fruit.

And who am I?
Count the grains of sand upon the beach,
or the stars that wash the midnight sky,
I am the beginning and the end,
the prize you long to reach.

I am the Cailleach washing in the stream
cleansing your life blood from my thighs,
I am the Morrigan screaming over battle scenes,
wreaking havoc and rejoicing in the cries
of foolish, greedy men.

I am Pandora with my box of tricks,
observing the foolish lift the lid,
unleashing hidden desires, a heady mix
of forbidden delights amid
decadence, betrayal and regret.

I have a heart, you know,
a vast unfathomable place,
where only those who understand me go,
only those deserving see my face
and live to tell the tale.

I am Death in Her feathered cloak,
Kali at Destruction’s door,
Hecate smiling as her hounds run amok,
run then, run until you can run no more,
I catch you all.

Doreen Hopwood

Call of the Goddess

October 9, 2017

In the violet rays from the darkened moon
She dissipates blackness, birthing first light –
returning day to its fecund glory,
shimmering in the slivering of night.

Hear Her call

In the rising sweet dawn chorus
She heralds new day through sublimic symphony –
crescendoing cacophony of sumptuous
sounds, reminding us to love and be free.

Hear Her call

In the swirling dancing of the mist
She lightens hearts through the quickening of day –
beckoning with the song of souls,
summoning Her priestesses to serve and pray.

Heed Her call.

Lynne Sedgemore

The moon is always female

October 8, 2017

The moon is always female and so
am I although often in this vale
of razorblades I have wished I could
put on and take off my sex like a dress
and why not? Do men always wear their sex
always? The priest, the doctor, the teacher
all tell us they come to their professions
neuter as clams and the truth is
when I work I am pure as an angel
tiger and clear is my eye and hot
my brain and silent all the whining
grunting piglets of the appetites.
For we were priests to the goddesses
to whom were fashioned the first altars
of clumsy stone on stone and leaping animal
in the wombdark caves, long before men
put on skirts and masks to scare babies.
For we were healers with herbs and poultices
with our milk and careful fingers
long before they began learning to cut up
the living by making jokes at corpses.
For we were making sounds from our throats
and lips to warn and encourage the helpless
young long before schools were built
to teach boys to obey and be bored and kill.

I wake in a strange slack empty bed
of a motel, shaking like dry leaves
the wind rips loose, and in my head
is bound a girl of twelve whose female
organs all but the numb womb are being
cut from her with a knife. Clitoridectomy,
whatever Latin name you call it, in a quarter
of the world’s girl children are so maimed
and I think of her and I cannot stop.
And I think of her and I cannot stop.

If you are a woman you feel the knife in the words.
If you are a man, then at age four or else
at twelve you are seized and held down
and your penis is cut off. You are left
your testicles but they are sewed to your
crotch. When your spouse buys you, you
are torn or cut open so that your precious
semen can be siphoned out, but of course
you feel nothing. But pain. But pain.

For the uses of men we have been butchered
and crippled and shut up and carved open
under the moon that swells and shines
and shrinks again into nothingness, pregnant
and then waning toward its little monthly
death. The moon is always female but the sun
is female only in lands where females
are let into the sun to run and climb.

A woman is screaming and I hear her.
A woman is bleeding and I see her
bleeding from the mouth, the womb, the breasts
in a fountain of dark blood of dismal
daily tedious sorrow quite palatable
to the taste of the mighty and taken for granted
that the bread of domesticity be baked
of our flesh, that the hearth be built
of our bones of animals kept for meat and milk,
that we open and lie under and weep.
I want to say over the names of my mothers
like the stones of a path I am climbing
rock by slippery rock into the mists.
Never even at knife point have I wanted
or been willing to be or become a man.
I want only to be myself and free.

I am waiting for the moon to rise. Here
I squat, the whole country with its steel
mills and its coal mines and its prisons
at my back and the continent tilting
up into mountains and torn by shining lakes
all behind me on this scythe of straw,
a sand bar cast on the ocean waves, and I
wait for the moon to rise red and heavy
in my eyes. Chilled, cranky, fearful
in the dark I wait and I am all the time
climbing slippery rocks in a mist while
far below the waves crash in the sea caves;
I am descending a stairway under the groaning
sea while the black waters buffet me
like rockweed to and fro.

I have swum the upper waters leaping
in dolphin’s skin for joy equally into the nec-
cessary air and the tumult of the powerful wave.
I am entering the chambers I have visited.
I have floated through them sleeping and sleep-
walking and waking, drowning in passion
festooned with green bladderwrack of misery.
I have wandered these chambers in the rock
where the moon freezes the air and all hair
is black or silver. Now I will tell you
what I have learned lying under the moon
naked as women do: now I will tell you
the changes of the high and lower moon.
Out of necessity’s hard stones we suck
what water we can and so we have survived,
women born of women. There is knowing
with the teeth as well as knowing with
the tongue and knowing with the fingertips
as well as knowing with words and with all
the fine flickering hungers of the brain.

Marge Piercy

When they ask to see your gods
your book of prayers
show them lines
drawn delicately with veins
on the underside of a bird’s wing
tell them you believe
in giant sycamores mottled
and stark against a winter sky
and in nights so frozen
stars crack open spilling
streams of molten ice to earth
and tell them how you drink
a holy wine of honeysuckle
on a warm spring day
and of the softness
of your mother who never taught you
death was life’s reward
but who believed in the earth
and the sun
and a million, million light years
of being



Heart of Kali

You the one who Opens Hearts. You who defy this westerner’s preconceived ideas and bring me to the ground in surrender, time after time. Heart opening, tears flowing. You the dark one, Kali awesome power.

You who are the creator of worlds – whether through lovemaking with Shiva, or through menstruation – you the Cosmic Creatrix, Black Time, Mother of Worlds, Dark Mother, Dark Matter. From whom all is breathed out, and to whom all returns.

You who slay the demons of oppression, greed and war on the planet when no one else can, in consort with your sister warrior goddess Durga. You who lick up the blood of demons to stop them from multiplying. You who shake the worlds with your bloodlust dance until you recognize your lover Shiva laying on the ground, and invite him to play with you.

You who are the energy of worlds, that which expands and contracts, that which allows involution and evolution of consciousness. You who are Kundalini, coiled energy at the base of the spine. You who rise with your three red eyes and tongue up my spine to my 3rd eye and out my crown when I am altered, when I feel the energy, when I am meditating, when I am making love.

You with your matriarchal tribal origins – warrior goddess who loves when she wishes, who calls us to love our fierceness, to honor our bodies and sexuality, who loves menstrual blood on the altar – who calls us forth on the wild woman path, the path of witches and Sybils, yoginis and Tantrics before us.

You who are Tantric Wisdom Goddess, who comes to us as we chant your name, whose image brings the ecstatic, whose geometric yantra can induce trance, who takes possession of her teachers and even her devotees. Who teaches us to pay attention to the energy, to come back to our power, our selves. Who shows us that the whole universe is within us.

You inducer of altered states – who gave me the star pillow as I floated up through the ceiling to visit you in dream-time. Who caused me to wake in the middle of the night with my body vibrating and my tongue sticking out. Who raised the sensual energy again and again, making love to me in meditation, until I really got it – the link between sexuality and spirituality. Who saved me in dreams only when I called on you and Shiva at the same moment. You who came through me as electric current, blanking out my waking consciousness. Who allowed the dream-time Voudou Loa to channel through me.

You, with your necklace of skulls, challenging me to confront my fears, calling me to meditate in the cremation grounds, bringing me so many dream-time images of skulls. Until I was no longer scared, and welcomed them, welcomed you.

You sky dancing Dakini – who scared me with your dance on top of the twin towers, until I understood that you were absorbing all back into yourself, including the demons of greed and destruction, including the fear of those who died, so that all were free to fly, so that all could come to you. You who help us confront our fears, our mortality, our death.

You Kali Maa, who came to me through my anger and rage at patriarchal authority – at those who try to control, or bind the power of women here and now, in this time – and in all times. You who confronted me with my shadow, so I could flex my warrior muscles and absorb my shadow self! You call us to look the beauty and terror of creation in the face and recognize it is all you. And that we are ‘all that.’ You who slay my demons and blow my heart wide open. You who rise again and again in the fire of my emotional cremation ground – you who devour my density, you who allow release.

You the dark one, Kali.

Mari P Ziolkowski

The night belongs to women

October 1, 2017

Women should never fear the night. It is their domain. They are strongly linked to the moon, and during the night feminine energy flows strongest and the Goddess is in the air. The night belongs to women and moonlight is reflected from their souls…