Woodspriestess: Exploring the intersection between Nature, the Goddess, art, and poetry.

Listening to the woods, to the stones, to Gaia, and to women...

In the woods behind my house rest a collection of nine large flat rocks. Daily, I walk down to these “priestess rocks” for some sacred time alone to pray, meditate, consider, and be. Often, while in this space, I open my mouth and poetry comes out. I’ve come to see this experience as "theapoetics"—experiencing the Goddess through direct “revelation,” framed in language. As Stanley Hopper originally described in the 1970’s, it is possible to “…replace theology, the rationalistic interpretation of belief, with theopoetics, finding God[dess] through poetry and fiction, which neither wither before modern science nor conflict with the complexity of what we know now to be the self.” Theapoetics might also be described, “as a means of engaging language and perception in such a way that one enters into a radical relation with the divine, the other, and the creation in which all occurs.”

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Loving the world

the flowers bend their bright bodies, b2ap3_thumbnail_img_5200.jpg
and tip their fragrance to the air,
and rise,
their red stems holding
all that dampness and recklessness
gladly and lightly,
and there it is again —
beauty the brave, the exemplary,
blazing open.
Do you love this world?

–excerpt “Peonies” by Mary Oliver*

Loving the world feels like a difficult topic to write about today when I see news coverage of the recent oil spill in Santa Barbara and read about the dolphins dying. It can be easy to start to feel discouraged and hopeless in the face of such destruction and lack of love for the earth, our precious, irreplaceable home.

I have often noted that while I definitely enjoy seeing my rosebush bloom and seeing beautiful flowers at other people’s houses, one of my favorite things about spring and summer is discovering what the earth has planted for us on her own. However, like the iris above that I spotted blooming by the side of the gravel road today (not by a house), I also think about the lasting imprint of the things we plant around our homes, perhaps one of our most enduring legacies.

When I wrote my final reflection for my Ecology and the Sacred class, I included this reflection on those things we plant…

    …on the same road on which we live, there are several former homesites, with a variety of introduced plant life that continues to bloom each year. Around the corner from us is a ramshackle house that has not been inhabited for about 50 years. It has a gorgeous flowering quince that blooms each spring and dozens and dozens of iris bloom as well, making bright spots of color barely visible through the trees that have grown up to nearly cover the house. The home in which my parents live (one mile away) is a restored log cabin originally built in 1899 and moved to the current location from a spot out by the gravel road. Jonquils had been planted along the front of the house and in the yard area (so, sometime during the early 1900’s, I would imagine) and those jonquils continue to bloom each year in the now-woods and by my parents’ house, where my mom transplanted some originals along with the house itself.

    When driving down the gravel road in the springtime, there is another location of a previous home that is only identifiable visually when the jonquils bloom and as their yellow glow catches your eye through the trees, you can also see a small footer of a crumbled foundation nearby, indicating they were once planted in front of a home. I am struck by the fact that this rosebush and tulip tree that I’ve introduced to my own home landscape may well outlast us and our entire home and may indeed be our most lasting “legacy” on this patch of earth…

    via Woodspriestess: The Language of Spring

And, recently, I read this beautiful reflection by Jodi Sky Rogers about the traces we leave behind:

    …So I hope that the traces I leave behind will reflect all these things that I carry in my heart. I pray that I find ways to leave behind a trail of petals that touch, inspire and heal those who I meet along my path – delicate heart-shaped petals that are imbued with love and good intentions. And should they fall on futile ground, may they turn to dust and return to the Earth as a nourishing gift for all that she gives me.

    via The Traces We Leave Behind | Jodi Sky Rogers.

This iris that I saw this morning, blooming despite many landscape changes, felt like a reminder that the traces we leave behind can be beautiful, tenacious, graceful, and loving and I appreciated its message.


“The world is holy. We are holy. All life is holy. Daily prayers are delivered on the lips of breaking waves, the whisperings of grasses, the shimmering of leaves.” ~Terry Tempest Williams

b2ap3_thumbnail_May-2015-028.JPG--

Photo above taken for my upcoming Womanrunes Immersion e-course.

*I spotted the Mary Oliver poem I opened this post with in Vanessa Sage’s recent newsletter. I also signed up for her upcoming free ecourse: Enchant Your Everyday.

 

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Molly has been “gathering the women” to circle, sing, celebrate, and share since 2008. She plans and facilitates women’s circles, Red Tents, seasonal retreats and rituals, Pink Tent mother-daughter circles, and family ceremonies from her tiny temple space in rural Missouri and teaches online courses in Red Tent facilitation and Practical Priestessing.

Molly is a priestess who holds MSW, M.Div, and D.Min degrees. She finished her dissertation about contemporary priestessing in the U.S. She is the author of Womanrunes, Earthprayer, and The Red Tent Resource Kit. Molly and and her husband Mark co-create Story Goddesses, original goddess sculptures, mini goddesses, pendants, and ceremony kits at Brigid’s Grove (http://brigidsgrove.com), where they also publish Womanrunes book and deck sets.

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