Avian Friendship by Sara Wright

The other night I had a dream about a strange green hooded figure that was guarding a green gate underground. She wasn’t  human; she had a hooked bird’s beak (like many of Marija Gimbutas’s goddess figures). Something about the strange face reminded me of an American Indian. This creature was not friendly but she was not hostile either. Just really intent upon making it clear that you did not pass through the gate without her permission. The word Root kept reverberating out loud in this place… Root Woman? Strange that she was also a bird.  Anyway, thinking about bird women prompted the following poem and brief reflection on my relationship with one kind of bird…

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Vigil by Sara Wright

The third day
dawns under a cloud.
 Mourning doves
spread their wings
across leaden skies.
I am walking on air.
Two restless
nights – a huge
truck in the yard –
my stomach lurches.
I read Tributes
 in a daze.
Fierce Little Flower
Warrior Woman
 a torrent of waves.
She is bridging
 raging waters
forging a New Story.

“Weaving the Visions.”
Oh, now I remember
where it all

She hugged a tree.
 I plant a seed.
Listening to rounds of
 “light and darkness”
 I let my body lead.

 A serpentine path
guides me
 back to
Her Garden.
Cradled by Ancestors
Rooted in Body
I shed another
  patriarchal skin.

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Summer Magic, by Molly M. Remer

We take a slice of honey cake
and a pottery cup of grape juice
and leave it by the rose bush
as an offering,
arrayed on a bed of petals
and topped with a single daisy
and a ring of wild raspberries.
We make some wishes
in the dusty air,
kneel down
with our palms upon the warm earth

and sing for rain.
We walk under
a half-moon sky
beside a blood-red sun,
the sound of coyotes
rising into the night
as a silent deer watches us,
head a triangle of alertness,
black eyes staring across
the heat-weary field.
We catch fireflies,
above the wildflowers
sparks of yellow-green,
and find a plump brown toad
waiting in the path.
Then, we stand quietly together,
mosquitoes beginning to cluster
around our legs,
our heads tilted back
watching carefully for fairy
silhouettes against the deepening gray
of the midsummer sky. 

It is summer here in the Northern Hemisphere. Deep summer. Dusty summer. Thirsty summer. Humid summer. In central Missouri, it is the type of thick, wet heat that soaks into you and saps your strength and enthusiasm about life. Life can feel faded, dull, and magic hard to see. The woods, where I find such solace, renewal, and enchantment, become closed to me as poison ivy, thorns, ticks and chiggers, resolutely bar my way. So, I walk on the road these days, in the mornings and at sunset, seeing what I can see from my vantage point on a dusty gravel road. Deep summer I find offers an opportunity to look around to see what flourishes of its own accord, to see what grows without tending, to see what rises wild and unfettered from the natural conditions in which they thrive.

Sometimes as humans we become used to controlling as much of the world as we can control and as much of ourselves as we can control. Sometimes we get focused on what we can cultivate and grow and intentionally tend. So focused on this conscious tending may we be, that we may even rip up or destroy or change what is naturally growing in our own little ecosystem, our own little biome, what is growing right where we are. We may even pull it up and put something else in its place that we think is prettier, or nicer, or even more beneficial or useful. I encourage us to consider summer as a time in which to pause with, appreciate and look at, savor and explore, learn about and discover, what really grows right where you are, what thrives right where you stand, without the need for you to manipulate or control or change it. And, I invite you to also consider how this might apply to the growing and thriving in your own personal life? How or what are you perhaps trying to manipulate or change or control in yourself or with the people in your life? Perhaps it is time to take a step back, to sit back, and to see what is already growing. What is already there? What is thriving in your world? What is thriving for you that doesn’t require wrestling with or changing or trying to make it fit in a certain way? I encourage you to soften and see. Perhaps the mulberry trees are green and spreading in your world. Perhaps the clover is in bloom. Perhaps there are daisies. Perhaps there are monarch butterflies still bravely persistent on the milkweed in the field. Perhaps there are wild onion scapes, with their little purple heads. Perhaps there is yarrow, white, and waiting, and interwoven in its own curious way with the health of your own blood and body. Perhaps that book you want to write is bubbling right behind your fingertips, waiting for your pen to be set against the page. Perhaps that project that sings your name is waiting for you to pause to see it.

We doubt sometimes our place in the natural world. And, yet these plants that surround us, that spring up around us, that grow right where we are, are here and growing, just like we, ourselves, are growing where we are. These plants are intertwined with the health of our own bodies. That is amazing and enchanting and wondrous to me.

My youngest son, Tanner, is six and we are working together on an earth science class, studying planets and the earth and geology and the universe. He came to me saying: “Mom, did you know, there’s real iron in us! There’s real iron in us.” And I replied, “there’s real iron at the core of the Earth too. Isn’t that amazing? The earth has iron in it and so do we.” He looked at me and asked then, “is magic real?” And I replied, “yes, honey, we walk around inside of it every day.” I pause here in the hot exhaustion of summer to marvel that so it is. In truth, it is not only that we walk around inside of it every day. We walk on top of it every day. We walk with it every day. It beats in our veins every day. We live with it every day. If we carry an awareness of this embodied magic with us, then every day becomes enchantment. Every day becomes sacred space in motion. Every day becomes the opportunity to fully inhabit our own living magic as we literally walk around within it each and every day.

So, what is growing for you? What is blooming for you? What is flourishing and healthy, just of its own accord, asking nothing else from you, but witnessing?

The earth is made
of days
beyond count
and roots beyond question.
The fire in your belly
is that which whirls worlds into being.
There is iron in your blood,
iron at the planet’s core,
iron in the stars,
iron in beak of hawk
and eye of crow,
and iron in the red rocks
beneath your feet.
This air you breathe is
river woven,
lightning laced,
tear salted,
iron eyed,
earth kissed,
raven winged.
let this breath expand
your chest
and know:
here you are,
with all things.

Molly Remer, MSW, D.Min, is a priestess, writer, and teacher facilitating ritual, making art, and weaving words together in central Missouri. Molly and her husband Mark co-create Story Goddesses at Brigid’s Grove. Molly is the author of nine books, including Walking with Persephone, Whole and HolyWomanrunes, and the Goddess Devotional. She is the creator of the devotional experience #30DaysofGoddess and she loves savoring small magic and everyday enchantment.

Women, Birds, and Feminism by Sara Wright

When I was about forty years old I discovered a clay deposit on a beach that I visited frequently. Intrigued, I sat down and began working with the river’s gift. I remember my astonishment when a beaked bird – woman emerged out of the clump of damp earth. I could feel a surge of fire pulsing through my body so I took the figure home and placed it on my bedside table, hoping to discern its message.

Shortly thereafter I discovered the work of Marija Gimbutas in the book The Language of the Goddess. There were a number of beaked goddesses pictured in this volume, some uncannily similar to mine. Had I tapped into the world of the ancient bird goddesses? I believed so. Although I had no idea what this might mean these images of Marija’s captured my imagination and kept me questioning. It wasn’t long before I also dreamed  other bird goddess images and rendered each of them in clay…

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Perilous Passages by Sara Wright

Old Woman cackled on the wing
a pterodactyl with claws
crimson black and white
a great wind
was howling
and she was too.
Passages she screeched.
Her wrath undid me.

The Way was Narrow.
  Cushions of moss
calmed wet cavern walls,
steep stones threatened
 uncertain footsteps,
echoing my descent.
At the bottom
of the well
Silence rang out
like a bell.

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The Pear Tree by Sara Wright

She was more
 than a sapling,
 so robust.
 One summer she
her tear shaped body,
a hundred sweet pears
to any creature
that sought her gifts.
Did the deer remember?
 Fruit that fermented became
fertilizer for hungry plants.

When they
girded her slender trunk
that winter
 I felt betrayed
by the herd of graceful creatures
I fed…

She was dead.
Her sweet cambium
stripped away
 under rough bark.
 Unable to carry
nitrogen, water, nutrients
from trunk to twig

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Running with Hares, a Personal Reflection by Sara Wright


An overturned bowl
of starflakes,
lays down a new
pearl white blanket.
I shovel –
Silvery showers obscure –
and some paths
are slippery
in the dark.
Grooming a circle
round and round
I attend to listening.

When day cares intervene –
naught but Silence
though I try
to feel –  to sense
pure Voices
rising from
frozen ground.
gray seeps
through me
like a sieve.
Prickling skin
grows taut.

Some days
lonely for
I neglect
to stay present
for Silence
as an end
in Herself.
Seeking change
I forget
to breathe
into Now. Continue reading “Running with Hares, a Personal Reflection by Sara Wright”

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