Paganistan: Notes from the Secret Commonwealth
In Which One Midwest Man-in-Black Confers, Converses & Otherwise Hob-Nobs with his Fellow Hob-Men (& -Women) Concerning the Sundry Ways of the Famed but Ill-Starred Tribe of Witches.
Witching I: Melanie's Dance
I swear, my friend Melanie could outwitch any of us any day of the moon.
She's a woman of many hats, Melanie: midwife, mother, teacher, lobbyist, Middle Eastern dancer. Somehow the hats all end up being black, pointy ones, though. Once a witch, always a witch.
A few years back she was working her henna booth at the local Queer Pride Festival. (Pass the mehndi artist hat, please.)
Lo and behold, who should come marching in but a platoon of Christian soldiers with “Jesus Hates You” signage: provocation seeking confrontation.
And what did she do then, the Witch of the Prairies?
Cue the Middle Eastern dance music, and crank it up loud. And here comes Melanie, nine months pregnant, shimmying and belly-rolling her best in the slack-jawed faces of the Bible brigade.
Anger, shouts, a fight: that they would have expected.
But a dance? Rippling, muscular female flesh tensing and flexing before their very eyes?
Shouting about harlots, the phobes turned tail and ran, never to return.
Witchcraft is a sideways kind of thing. The hardest hit's the one you don't see coming.
Banishing with a dance.
Now that's what I call witching.
Photo: Jennifer Stumpff
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