“Just” a Mother

Drawing by Henry Gray

“It is not female biology that has betrayed the female, as Elizabeth Cady Stanton observed more than one hundred years ago, it is the myths and stories that have been told about her, what has come to be believed about her – even by the female herself.

In the Christian West, it is common for a woman to be described or to describe herself as “just a mother”. It is common for “barefoot and pregnant” to connote powerlessness. Simone de Beauvoir suggested that it was as mother that woman was most fearsome, so it was as mother that she was enslaved.

Yet there are cultures in the human community where a birthing mother is described as a “great warrior” – going to the gates of life and death, to heave and push a soul into the world.”

~Glenys Livingstone, PhD

Magna Mater, Great Mother Cybele
Lounging on her Lion

The Wild Will Call You Back

The Wild will call you back.
Through half-remembered dreams
and sunsets painted
in burnt sienna
and vermillion flames
she will call you back home.
The coyotes will wake you
from your sleep
with their clarion call
to keep your eyes
wide open.

How long have you been sleeping?
How much have you forgotten?

The Wild will call you back.
She will hang you upside down
and shake the nonsense
from the pockets
of your mind.
She will strip your soul naked
leaving you raw and exposed
under the searing glare
of the gods.
Offer up the holiness
of your confusion
and questions.
Dress yourself
in fireflies
and attune your senses
to awe
while you learn the slow seduction
of courting your muse.

Brush the stardust from your wings
and wipe the ocean from your eyes.
Flex your claws
dig your roots deep down
into the fertile earth
and show your fangs.
Gather pollen on your legs
and speak
in venom
and honey.
Peel back your colonized tongue
and let it hiss
and purr
and growl
and scream.

Do you remember
how to stalk
as predator
and how to surrender
as prey?

The Wild will call you back.
The owls know your real name
and will call you
from the darkness of night
to dance under the moon.
Crack your heart open
with your ancestors’ bones
and dance in the ecstasy
of your love
and your grief
with flailing limbs
bloody knees
and mud-stained feet.
Braid mugwort into your hair
and dream yourself
awake.

The Wild will call you back.
She will teach you how to die
again and again
and how to die well.
There is no difference
between your funeral pyre
and your birth canal.
Do not bother
to try and stop
the bleeding.
Love with the gentleness
and ferocity
of your whole
soft
tender being.
Feed the spirits
with your beauty
and sweetness
and ask them to show you
the way home.

~Gina Puorro
www.ginapuorro.com

Not a Goodie Bag

“The Feminine is not here to inject power into your Will.
Or to get you all the goodies you desire.
It is actually just the opposite.
Feminine Embodiment will reveal the sacred poverty of those goodies.
One taste of the Real and you will want for nothing else…”

~Maya Luna

Redefining Power

“If women are not perceived to be fully within the structures of power, surely it is power that we need to redefine rather than women.”

~Mary Beard

Image: Egyptian Goddess Nut,
raising the Sun. Louvre Museum

Kiss Your Demons and Heal

This is a good morning to kiss your demons
and change them into dark angels.
Do not drive them away or they will return.
Lust is not a demon but a dark angel filled
with un-created star nectar.
Anger is not a demon but a dark angel of healing fire
dancing in your amygdala.
Grief is not a demon but a dark angel bearing
seven oceans of love in one jar.
The demon of depression who lives underground
keeps Wisdom hostage, binding
her dark angel bones in delicious mycelia.
The dark angel of addiction brings gifts
under one broken wing, and uses the other
to help you fly, for one of yours is broken too.
If you do not bow to your dark angels, they will
possess you and you will have to act them out.
So breathe them in, let them become your
shouts and sighs, pants of lust and terror
in your lungs. Now exhale and dissolve them
into the clear ocean of awakening.
They don’t possess you, you possess them.
Your dark angels have become the blue sky,
a swirl of hummingbirds, tree frogs
discussing everything. But beware
of enlightened teachers who claim no darkness.
They will lead you into a deeper darkness,
the shadow that hides from itself.
Against your beautiful demons a true teacher
will never set your heart.
A true teacher will empower you to kiss them
with that kiss which the mind gives
to its most terrible thoughts,
so that names, images, teeth marks, hieroglyphs
of veins scrawled on the cave of your liver,
neurons twisted into Sanskrit
etching ancient spells into your hippocampus,
the rippling gristle-flower of sound in your bellybutton,
all disappear into one Body, this Body,
where you taste the starless wine of night itself
and give birth to tomorrow’s sun.

~Fred LaMotte

🌙

Image: Michelangelo

The Blanket Around Her

maybe it is her birth
which she holds close to herself
or her death
which is just as inseparable
and the white wind
that encircles her is a part
just as the blue sky
hanging in turquoise from her neck
oh woman
remember who you are
woman
it is the whole earth

~ Joy Harjo

🌎

Photo by Ruthie Martin
on Unsplash