Originally posted in Pantheon
Generally it helps to understand where someone is coming from. At this point in time I am coming to you live from the southern node of the axis of woo that runs south along US 441 from Asheville, NC…that is to say, Athens, GA. We have a university here with which I am associated in various ways, and other peculiar customs, including a Tree That Owns Itself in defiance of human-centric notions of property. Patton Oswalt once called Athens a “weird bubble dream city of goodness.” I tend to agree.
Here is where I am a witch. I use the word in preference to Pagan, though I mark “Pagan” on forms as an act of solidarity and I won’t complain if you call me one. I’m an initiate of the Feri Tradition (about which I will probably opine at some length later on) which is in turn partially rooted in Southern folk magic. As it happens, so am I. I grew up in the north Georgia mountains among people who still use the word “witch” in an every-day, non-pejorative way, and who think that dowsing for water and talking out burns are ordinary matters of life. I think of myself as old-school, by which I mean that I read Tarot cards for people, make condition oils, heal, and generally view myself as having a function in the larger society (whether or not they properly apprehend it) as opposed to merely being concerned with my own spiritual progress. This is what I mean when I say that I am a witch.I’m also a writer of both fiction and, as mentioned, poetry; I will put a bibliography up on my bio page so you can read some of my work if you are so inclined. This is all part of my path, as I believe along with Alice Walker that the artist is a shaman by definition and history, and “people instinctively respond to the healing, enlightening medicine of stories.”