I follow many interesting entrepreneurial women from around the world and take great interest in their businesses. What they have in common is that they do business in a feminine way with values such as connection, love, and compassion at the forefront. I love my inbox as it is full of these women’s inspiring newsletters and offerings.
I noticed a few months ago that there was a common theme emerging in the emails I received – and this theme was about healing the Witch Wound. I have never related to Witches and at first I didn’t take much notice. I am not a Witch and I am not interested in anything witchy and that was that.
After a while I had to admit that it was something to take notice of as the emails kept coming in with the same theme – women from around the world all talking about the necessity to heal the Witch Wound. What were they talking about?
One of the emails that arrived in my inbox was from Janet Connor, an American woman I follow for her beautiful approach and offerings for a soulful life – she offered a 13-week online Pilgrimage, The Return of the Witches, where we were to visit the places and hear the stories of the many women who were accused of being witches, brutally tortured and executed in the most terrifying ways.
The inspiration and guidance for the Pilgrimage had come to her through a connection to Joan of Arc, whom we know as a well-known and incredibly courageous woman, sentenced to be burnt at the stake for witch craft at the age of 19 in 1431.
I decided to join the Pilgrimage. It was an incredible experience – mind blowing, painful, thought provoking and deeply beautiful. To hear the stories of these women, who sometimes were just ordinary women like you and I, or healers, skilled in women’s mysteries and loved in their communities, fall prey to patriarchal religion was shocking. Their gifts were seen as evil, they were dobbed in by friends and neighbours out of fear and sometimes wicked gossip…it touched all of us deeply.
Out of the experience from the Pilgrimage I can see how these terrible atrocities rippled down through family lines and the trauma of this dark history is still with us. We are all affected in some way or another.
These are the Witch Wounds and show up as various symptoms in us and in society. I have so much to say now about this topic, but I will make a separate post about it instead as the interview that follows here is long and rich!
I will say though that I began to wonder if maybe my own lineage had been affected by the trauma of the witch hunts that were common in Europe between the 1400’s and 1700’s. Not necessarily by the burning of a distant great grandmother but just by my ancestors living in a community where the witch hunts were rampant.
I found a shockingly horrible event taking place in Sweden close to Stockholm (where I am from) called the Torsaker Witch Trials in 1675. I have no recall of it being taught in school. It shook me for days after reading it and made it very real for me.
I also did some research of what had happened in the small town of Dinkelsbuhl in Bavaria, Germany, where my mother was from and was not surprised to find that quite a few women had been burned at the stake there and many more in the surrounding towns.
And don’t think for a moment that the witch hunts have stopped. They are still reported to happen in many places around the world. In my own backyard it was openly displayed in the Sydney Morning Herald in 2010 when our first female Prime Minister Julia Gillard came to power. On this photo the now infamous sign ‘Ditch the Witch’ is seen with the power hungry politician and often called misogynist Tony Abbot in front of it.
With this lengthy introduction I want to introduce you to one more of the women whose emails arrived in my inbox that spoke of Healing the Witch Wound – the wonderful and gifted Irish poet, storyteller, writer, soul-based coach, and self-development trainer Eimear Stassin.
I had previously taken part in a story telling course with her and loved the soulful depth of her approach. I asked Eimear for an interview and here, from her home in Scotland where she lives with her husband, children and family dog, you can read her story of how she heard the call from the women accused of being witches in the past and how we can heal the wound that still festers in us and in our societies from that time.
If you feel touched by this topic, I invite you to explore the different links provided here. If your family line goes back to Europe, England and Scotland and also some parts of the US, I encourage you to do you own research from the areas your ancestors lived in.
Most importantly, I invite you to open your heart to all the innocent women (and many men as well) killed and who’s names are forgotten or not known. They were women and human beings like you and I.
Devi Living – You live in Falkirk in Central Scotland. What can you tell us about the history of the witch trials in Scotland?
Eimear – The history of the witch trials in Scotland is a wicked one! With the passing of the Scottish Witchcraft Act 1563 it was illegal to practice Witchcraft or consult with Witches. This meant it was not a safe time to be called a witch, declare yourself a witch or practice the craft of healing, intuition, or plant medicine. It’s said that over 5,000 people, of which 84% were women, were killed, accused of being a Witch all around Scotland.
Recently, students at Edinburgh University undertook a survey to name and geolocate those convicted, killed, and accused of Witchcraft. They were able to name and locate 3,141 of them – they plotted them on this map here. The Act was repealed in 1736. The last person legally executed (burnt to death in a tar barrel) after being accused of Witchcraft was in 1727. Janet Horne was her name.
There are small memorials around Scotland dedicated to the witches that were executed. Small, subtle, chilling, and sad. A campaign created in 2020, called The Witches of Scotland, was setup to request a legal pardon for the witches killed, for a national memorial in their honour. Their petition was lodged into the Scottish Parliament on the 17th of March 2021 with 3,414 signatures.
However, you can’t kill a witch! The energy of the witch is rising once again!
Devi Living -Let’s begin with the word Witch – it can invoke strong reactions, ranging from discomfort to hate. Why do we often have such aversion to this word? What do we need to know about the witches so that we can truly embrace the truth of them? Who were they really?
Eimear – Although the witchcraft acts have been repealed, the legacy of these times continue up to this day. That is why I believe the word is loaded for so many. Perhaps many have an aversion to the word because they were killed for being a witch in a past life or past lives. It wasn’t safe to be a witch. Over the millennia, we as a society have been turned against the word witch by a patriarchal structure that no longer valued the gifts and crafts of the witch.
The feminine aspects of self were cut off in the same way, severed and sent underground. This severance shows up in so many ways in our world today such as in our fairy tales and stories that we pass on to our children; our street names; the gender pay gap; certain religions, treatment of women in certain countries. Look at Afghanistan just now and the suppression and violence towards women.
Why is it that the wizard is always wise, and the witch is usually evil?!
Other than the good witch in the Wizard of Oz, there’s an imbalance in the stories we are told and the stories we tell ourselves based on cultural conditioning and the environment we grew up in, about the word witch.
Still, there is hope. We can rewrite the story. We can give Witch a re-brand. We can peel back the layers of historical (and current day) persecution to reveal the beauty and gold that lies beneath.
The Witch is the wise one, the healer, the clairvoyant. The Witch is the seer, the spell caster and web weaver. The Witch is powered by her inner guidance. Her intuition. The Witch comes in all shapes and sizes, different voices and guises.
The Witch is in touch with the earth and her cycles; knows and understands plants and their medicines, practices telepathy to converse with other witches, animals and/or spirit guides.
The Witch sees in the dark, communes with the moon and charges her crystals in moon’s illuminated light whilst walking barefoot on the land. The Witch is from the land and of the land. The Witch is in touch and deeply connected to her roots, her cycles and understands her powers that come from deep within her womb space.
The Witch knows and respects her voice for the truth that it conveys, she speaks with authority, casting spells with her wise words! The Witch whispers her dreams, visions and knowing into the streams of flowing fresh waters to be carried forth into the salty wild oceans. Creating her moment-by-moment reality.
The Witch just knows!
Devi Living – A mock Witch trial in Edinburgh ignited a deep desire in you to speak for the witches. This began your journey of contributing to the healing of the deep multi-generational wound and trauma that was inflicted on so many women, their families, and also the societies they lived in. Can you tell us about how it all began for you!
Eimear – It began with a tour of The Edinburgh Dungeons. What was meant to be a fun family tour of the underbelly of old town Edinburgh turned into an unexpected awakening for me!
It was on the 8th of August 2020 I went on a short tour with my family. My husband had booked it. I wasn’t so keen to go since it was a lovely sunny day! During the tour, there was a re-enactment of a witch trial. I volunteered to be the witch on trial. During the role play, as the wig wearing judge was raising his hammer to sentence me to death for being a witch, this flicker of a flame of remembrance awoke within me. It was very subtle at first and then grew stronger. What I knew in my bones were a few things:
– That this had happened to me and perhaps my family in past lifetimes.
– That this time round I was not going to testify against my fellow sister and brother witches.
– That I could re-write my history into a kind of Herstory that fit with who I was becoming…in other words, begin to step into Witch energies and archetypes
– That I had to begin to share and speak about this experience The experience of the mock trial led me seek out more information about the witches of Edinburgh.
I found myself later that day alone at The Witches Well, a memorial to the 300 witches who were burnt at the stake on the grounds of Edinburgh Castle. While I stood there, at this humble memorial, it was like the ground began to rumble and awaken something further within me. This time it was like a fierce fury! Like an up swell of emotions that had laid dormant for a long time.
Who were these witches? What were their names? Why had I not known about these witches in the 20 years that I had lived and worked in Scotland and in Edinburgh? All these questions began to rise up to the surface for me.
Something had unlocked within me. The witches were whispering, knowing I would listen!
I took a few photos of The Witches Well memorial. Wandered around the castle esplanade which has beautiful sweeping view around Edinburgh…. wondered what it must have been like for these witches to be killed in such brutal ways…these were their last views…. And then I turned and began my walk downhill and home to our accommodation where we were staying for the week. But that wasn’t the end of the experience. These words began to percolate through and around me to the rhythm of my marching feet…. the words became a mantra as follows:
Witches Rise Up, return to your power.
Witches Rise Up, now is the hour.
Witches Rise Up, step onto your throne.
Witches Rise Up, it’s time to come home.
The witches were tickling me out of hiding, humming me back to wholeness and guiding me home! For me this is what the witch energy is like – a mischievous, playful tickling and cajoling, daring me to speak and step out, knowing that I’m fully supported.
With that comes a feeling of inner power, inner fire that fuels the awakening of my creativity through words, storytelling and speaking. It’s like a cackle of witches are supporting me! ‘Remember who you are’, they urge. ‘Remember who you are.’
Devi Living – It is as if the witches themselves are calling us from the past into the present. What do you feel is behind this call that is heard by so many now, in these times?
Eimear – Yes many are feeling the call right now. The power of the witches, the reasons for them being killed in the first place, has never left. Those who were burnt or drowned – they weren’t buried but left to be absorbed by mother earth – to be welcomed home by the great mother. Their DNA remains in the ground beneath our feet where we tread.
Their power remains and many are tapping into that as people become more awake to their intuition and inner knowing. It’s as if the power of the witches is rising in resonance to our stamping feet. We are ready now for this witch energy to emerge from underground. It’s time.
As the old world continues to crumble, we’re being called out of hiding to heal, to reveal and remember our true selves – this is our soul gold as our new and aligned stories continue to unfold! Why are we here at this time on this earth? What is our purpose? Why us and why now? We’re here for a reason. Many are searching and ache to connect with that part of them that knows why they are here, what their purpose is and what action they need to take to create the new earth that is beautifully in balanced harmony with the laws of nature.
Devi Living -How do we begin the healing that is so deeply needed? Atrocities of that scale affects us to this day. What is the good medicine?
Eimear – We begin healing first by acknowledging that we need to and can heal. Everyone. We can begin to become aware of the fact that we all have parts of ourselves that need tending to and healing as a result of experiences in this life and previous lives.
Then we take three deep breaths. We become still. Connect our feet to the earth below, soles to soil, grounding. Hands on heart, we bring awareness to those parts of us that are trying to get our attention – those parts of us that yearn for some gentle kind words of encouragement. This could be physical aches, or inner aches.
And then we speak. We write. We sound. We sing. We get creative once again and connect with those things that bring us joy. That make our hearts sing and our bellies wobble like delicious jelly! We clear space in the clutter of daily life in order to begin to remember the whispers of her, your inner witch!
The good medicine is nature. She knows best! For the earth is also a witch, according to Charlie Murphy’s song, Burning Times. We connect to our indigenous roots that are native to us. Where do you feel most connected? What parts of the world feel like home to you? Where are your power places geographically?
For me I feel most connected when out walking in nature, amongst the trees, feeling the elementals flowing through me, smelling the delicious earthy smells and noticing. Just noticing.
We call all parts of ourselves home, inviting these lost or hidden parts of ourselves to integrate back home and heal. A big part of my healing is remembering and reconnecting with my Irish roots, my home. Rewriting and retelling the ancient mythological stories of the land of Ireland.
Getting to know the ancient goddesses of the Celtic lands once again whilst allowing myself to feel their presence within me, to walk with their medicine.
Archetypes like Brigid, Bóinn, The Cailleach Witch, Macha or Maebh – these powerful goddesses are also witches willing to guide us home.
Their energies are felt on the land of Ireland at various sacred sites. Their energies also call on certain elementals, earth, air, fire and water, to reawaken these elementals within us. Rebuilding our elemental foundations.
Learning about and walking the Celtic Medicine Wheel once again which continues to bring me home to my center, my seat or throne of balanced power. Home to me!
Devi Living – What are the signs that the witch wound is festering inside us and in society? How do you feel our world could change once this deep wound has had a chance to heal?
Eimear – I can speak about the signs for me which became very apparent during my second online summit called ‘Healing the Witch Wound’ – stepping out and becoming visible in this way, speaking of witchy experiences…
Having spent 20 years working in Corporate Financial Services, standing in my witchy power was quite a quantum change on my path!
The term ‘healing the witch wound’ was actually coined by a sacred feminine activist called Kimberley Jones 21 years ago. I feel that so many more of us have been impacted by the witch wound that lingers and festers that we may ever know.
At first, allowing myself to be guided by my inner knowing, I knew I had to speak about these experiences I was having. This brought on waves of heaviness that descended over me like a thick blanket. This would happen just before going live for any of my talks or interviews.
It was as if my ego and logical mind were trying to stop me from stepping out. Trying to keep me safe in my comfort zone. But each time I step out and stretch myself a little bit more, those waves of heaviness dissipate. Just like magic! Witchy magic!
In my corporate career I was used to standing in front of large groups of people, speaking and delivering training. I had overcome that hurdle, that initial fear and nervousness of speaking in public, or so I thought!
During the Healing the Witch Wound summit, as I voiced and spoke my own stories and poems, my own lived and unique truth, my throat became dry and sore, like all the moisture had suddenly disappeared and a giant hand had reached out to restrict my throat. No amount of coughing, making a joke of it or sipping water would get rid of it! I remember feeling the panic setting in. My mind cursing me for following this trail of curiosity. The fear of judgement; fears of being ridiculed…. of being laughed off the zoom stage, of being cast aside once again.
Who would want to listen to a person speaking on the topic of healing the witch wound when she doesn’t even have her shit sorted herself?! What does she know anyway?!
Then breathing and feeling the waves of support from witches all around the world with similar experiences and stories expressed in many different ways. The kindness, appreciation, and recognition of the courage it takes to broach this subject and stand on stage to speak in this way.
The outpouring of support was incredibly moving and continues to be. The gifts of words and feedback from people of what was ignited within them as a result of this topic being openly discussed.
I could feel the circles of energetic support wrapping around me from all corners of the globe and from the witches of the past! Sisterhood, brotherhood uniting once again in support of one another.
You can actually have a look for yourself on this live Webinar on my YouTube channel…13:47 mins in. The witch wound(s) within me that had been so well hidden over lifetimes of being silenced was firmly lodged and becoming very felt and very visible to me and my audience. Live on air – ha! Cue the witchy cackle!
I had stepped onto the path and there was no turning back! The witch wound was certainly getting my attention, and what better time than during my summit on that very topic!
The witch wound didn’t want me to just get rid of it, to get rid of what we don’t like about ourselves. That’s just repeating the same patterns of HIStory of callous cruel executions. The witch wound within me wanted me to acknowledge HERstory, wanted my attention, wanted to be heard.
Wanted kind words of sweet soft soothing to be sung into her ears knowing that she was now safe, held. That she is not broken. That she can heal and is already healing. I am so grateful for these experiences and that I listened.
This could only have happened by my initial YES to stepping into all of This, not knowing where it would lead….and continues to lead!
Other ways the witch wound can fester is through breakdowns in sisterhood and brotherhood where we ‘testify against’ another. We speak negatively of others…. isn’t this what the patriarchal structures encourage? Not speaking up or speaking our truth or opinion in a group or in front of others. The fear of speaking in public. The fear of being seen and being judged, ridiculed, shamed, blamed or defamed in any way.
There are so many ways that can continue on down our family lines until we bring our conscious awareness to these wounds and begin to allow the healing to organically happen with this new awareness.
For me, continuing to speak, share and gather global sisters and brothers together in circle and community has really helped feeling supported in witchy well-ness.
I’m also working with brilliant mentors and coaches to continue to heal myself and my voice. Chanting has brought amazing freeness to my voice – it’s freeing my inner voice revealing the gold beneath!
I view the witch wound as an umbrella term for other kind of collective wounding such as colonial wounding, patriarchal wounding, religious wounding, sisterhood wounding, discrimination, sexism, racism, all ways in which we feel disconnected from each other…. all of which need to be healed at a cellular level – embodied healing.
As we continue to heal ourselves, we continue to heal our world. As we continue to bring more kindness to ourselves, we reflect that kindness out into the world too. Our world becomes a kinder, peaceful, and more balanced place. We are all so interconnected.
We also heal our family lines back and forward through the generations – I have heard that is 7–9 generations back and forward. That’s healing on a quantum scale!
Devi Living – How can we honour the many grandmothers, mothers, sisters and wives who were accused of being witches and had their lives taken in such brutal and tragic ways?
Eimear – We honour them by educating ourselves – who were they? What were their names? What powers did they possess to be so brutally harmed and killed? What kind of lives did they live? Where did they live?
We honour them by speaking their stories.
We honour them by remembering that we too are witches here now to hold the torch for them, the witches.
We honour them by knowing that we too are the torch for them, the withches…and for all witches alive today to rise up and return to their power.
We honour them by befriending the elementals that were used against our witch ancestors – particularly fire and water. That it is safe to reconnect with the power of fire and water within us. To feel it. To feed it. To let it burn and flow once again.
We gather up their stories and feel into their energies, knowing that their powers are our powers. To be in our power as the witches, for we have returned for this age of Witch!
There’s a wonderful memorial created by a lady called Caren Thompson called The Medicine Spoon Memorial ‘in honour and remembrance of our witch ancestors’ throughout England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. They are honouring 4,000 plus women.
Devi Living – To finish, what can you leave us with to ignite a desire in the women who read this interview that will begin their own healing and that of the collective witch wound?
Eimear – I’ve found reciting, singing, dancing, or walking with these mantras is very healing. Here are two mantras;
Witches Rise Up, return to your power.
Witches Rise Up, now is the hour.
Witches Rise Up, step onto your throne.
Witches Rise Up, it’s time to come home
I am witch, I am whole. I am witch, I am home.
Create your own! What mantras and words want to flow through you?! Feel the power in these words. Feel the energies of the witches who are urging us to rise up and remember and return to our power.
Your throne awaits, dear witch. You can wash away your weariness in the well waters of time. You can heal. You can feel once again, and this is your power! Welcome home, witch.
Thank you so much Eimear for your part in healing the Witch Wound and for bringing the terrifying past of the accused women to our attention and for healing! It feels so important to honour and acknowlege the women who died, women who were just like ourselves but found themselves in a time when there was immense danger – just being a woman.
And for you who is reading this, I hope this has touched you in some way and that you not only appreciate the freedom you have these days to voice your truth but that you also feel inspired to heal that which is in the way of doing so.
Leave a comment and let us know how this affected you. Did something stir in you?
Eimear is offering support ‘in the form of the sacred and surprising form
of 1:1 Soul Based Coaching’ to really dive deep and heal your witch wound. You can email Eimear at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for a free discovery call.
You can find out more about Eimear’s work and offerings and join her mailing list on her website here.
You can watch and subscribe to Eimear’s YouTube channel here.
You can follow Eimear on Instagram here.
Scroll down to find more writing from Eimear’s journey of responding to the call of the accused women from the past.
Photos – Painting Joan of Arc – Alamy Stock photo, Dinkelsbuhl – Tripadvisor, Ditch the Witch -Sydney Morning Herlald, Janet Hourne’s memorial stone – Badwitch,co.uk, Eimear and dog Riley at the Grange Stone Circle in Lough Gur Ireland, Eimear outside the Edinburgh Dungeon, The Witches Well memorial Edinburgh – edinburgh.org, Eimear in her previous corporate job overlooking Edinburgh Castle, Beal Ban Dingle Peninsula Ireland, Eimear in blue jacket at Beal Ban Dingle Peninsula Ireland.
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The Flame of Remembrance
There was a gentle flicker
deep within her knowing,
A flicker of a flame that had lain dormant for
far too long.
It sparked to life once again.
Awakening an ancient, powerful knowing.
That was fiercely focused and quietly determined.
She felt her body straighten in preparation.
Readying herself to speak for all of them.
And for all of us.
Named and unnamed.
The persecuted, the oppressed; the burnt; the drowned.
And what rose within her was a No.
Inaudible at first, then rising to a crescendo.
No. No. No.
She had finally drawn her boundary line
with an ancient knowing that it was now
Underground in the dark, dank, smelly squalor of Edinburgh’s cold old
stone town dungeons, we’ve been here a while.
Odours of barbaric, cruel, evil waft through the stale air. They use many
types of metal tools to try to make us talk. To speak our truths AND to
speak out against them…. fellow healers, fellow intuitives, fellow women
and men and so-called thieves.
We go on trial.
There he stands before me – that wig wearing judge. On his pulpit, armed
with wooden hammer, he speaks. His loud voice echoing around these
dimly lit surroundings.
Peering down at me and my skinny ragged barefoot form. Shouting lies
upon lies at me about my suspected misdemeanours.
None it is true. It’s all entirely fabricated. I gulp the dryness down in my
throat. Holding back the tears of years of persecution.
I’ve had enough. It’s hopeless.
I’m doomed to the same fate as the rest of them.
An unspeakably torturous hot death. I’ve witnessed many in my time.
He lifts his hammer high in the air and, as it comes crashing down on his
wooden pulpit, he sentences me to death by means of burning at the
stake on the Castle Esplanade, with plenty of space for onlookers, time
and date to be confirmed…. For Witchcraft.
Citing the Witchcraft Act of 1563.
I am numb.
And then, I feel a familiar flicker in the bowels of my belly. Rising
from deep within my womb. A reigniting of that old flame.
A knowing that I have been here before.
A remembering that this has happened. To me and many friends,
my family, over the centuries.
I stand there, rooted to the spot, and, laughing, turn to my children and
‘This is real! This did happen!’ I tell them.
We turn and together walk through the wooden door, along the old stone
floor and into the next room as our tour of the Edinburgh Dungeons
I had volunteered to role play a witch trial and the witches had gotten
under my skin!
It was 8th August 2020.
Later that evening, I return to the Castle Esplanade, alone. Walking up
the worn shiny stone steps, I think of the 300 plus witches that were
burnt at the stake in Edinburgh’s Old Town all those centuries ago. And
for the many more who were drowned in the Lake in the now beautiful
Princes Street Gardens.
I knew there was a small memorial to these witches at the entrance to
the Castle Esplanade as you walk towards Edinburgh’s Castle.
Here is what sprung forth:
A Fierce Fury at The Witches Well
I stop at the Witches Well and take a photo – a small plaque commemorates them, the witches. My mind is alight with questions.
Who were they? What were their names? What are their stories?
Why had I not noticed this plaque before in all of my time living and working in this city?
Looking up I wonder was this their last view looking out over the wide
castle esplanade and down the cobbled old town of Edinburgh’s’ Royal
Mile and all the way to the sea?
I stand a moment longer and, bowing my head in reverence to them,
quietly pay my respects.
I turn to leave and feel a surge of volcanic power vibrate through me.
A molten lava like heat takes my breath away. This extinct volcano that
I’m standing on commemorating the witches is awakening a fierce fury
And then they speak to the rhythm of my marching feet:
Witches! Rise Up and Return to Your Power.
Witches! Rise Up. Now is the Hour.
Witches! Rise Up and Step on to Your Throne.
Witches Rise Up. It’s time to Come Home.
It was the witches who were calling me all along.
It just took me 3 years to realise it!
We are the witches, yes, we have returned!
The Age of Witch is here.
Eimear – Due to various lockdowns and restrictions, I didn’t return to the city of
Edinburgh for another nine months. On 14 th May 2021 I decided it was
time to take the 25 minute train journey into Edinburgh! Time to
commune with the witches once again to see if there were any further
messages of enlightenment into the depths of re-witching myself!
Here’s how the journey unfolded:
Part 2: T O R C H: The Unfolding Story
On 14th May 2021, I return to Edinburgh, alone. It’s my first visit since
that witchy experience last August. Feelings of excitement and
nervousness are bubbling. Not knowing what to expect, yet, secretly
hoping for more dramatic experiences, enlightening moments, bolts of
inspiration or perhaps even thunderous witchy words…!
I walk up the steep cobbled street, shoulders forward, facing towards the
castle. I feel a heaviness descend over and around me like a cloak made
from thick dark clouds (of smoke?).
Heaviness. Sadness. Grief. Patriarchy percolates in the air.
Just before I round the corner, I gave a wee nod to Edinburgh University’s
School of Divinity which was founded in 1583, 20 years after the passing
of The Scottish Witchcraft Act.
Thoughts, thoughts percolating, I almost collide with a litter bin on the
I stop. I gasp. My heart is beating fast.
One word is graffitied in white letters onto the black litter bin. The word
I take a photo.
T O R C H
Haven’t I heard those words before?
Then I remember…
…We, You, I, Me, Us…
We are holding the torch for these witches.
Remembering what they stood for; remembering their powers;
remembering what they knew; reclaiming our witchiness in these times
and for these times; re-witching ourselves anew!
I walk down the Royal Mile deep in contemplation.
When I get home, I write this poem:
I hold the torch,
The dark and the light
The yin and the yang
The black and the white.
I AM the torch,
The dark and the light
The yin and the yang
The black and the white.
The solar; the lunar
The womb and the tomb,
The ancient, the modern.
Your golden truth.
The cosmos; the earth,
water, air, fire.
We are being called to rise up.
To step into our soul gifts in life and business.
Be the torch for the one and the all.
The new earth is here.
It’s time to stand tall.
Witches, rise up and return to your power;
Witches rise up, now is the hour.
Witches rise up, step onto your throne.
Witches rise up, it’s time to come home.
Calling all parts home.
The Cailleach – Witches Rise Up!
I am the ancient and mighty Cailleach!
Creator of Celtic lands.
Where I’ve travelled so far and wide.
I am as strong as any warrior.
I am fierce as the gale-force winds as they blow in from Wild Atlantic Oceans.
A force to be reckoned with; rock-solid they say!
I am Goddess of the Winter.
Shrouding you in brilliant blankets of white snows.
My arctic perspectives will give you chills as you stand frozen to your spot!
I filled my Apron with rocks and boulders
In great big leaps and hops, between Scotland and Ireland,
I scattered these rocks, to form the mountains of Slieve Guillion in Ulster;
the Cairns of Loughhcrew in Meath; the Beara Peninsula in Kerry.
Rock babies birthed from my divine womb.
I am the wind that tousles your hair; I am Air.
I am here today to walk with you into the unknown, your not yet lived.
To help you feel to heal your witch woundings, conscious and unconscious.
In this life and over many lifetimes.
Let me tell you first of some of my witchy experiences!
Names names they did call me.
Old Hag; Witch; Crone; Wailing BeanShee. Bone Mother.
I am all of these and so much more, despite the distortion of the lore.
I am the sacred air that breathes you; the land that births you.
I speak to you in the hills and valleys; I taunt you in the mountains and rocks.
I am rooted in the landscape of your own becoming.
I am your Mother dear child.
I hear your battle cries; your worries and your lies.
I am here to lay out the truth,
of a power that cannot be rebuked…
But emerges to this day from underground cliffs and rocks;
from the very landscape that is You!
They tried to shut me up;
Silencing me with unfair trial.
The tribulations I have been through.
Tied to a wooden pole and burnt at the stake accused of Witchcraft.
The Winter winds fanning the flames,
as they watched on
– men, women and children;
the very landscape of my own creation.
Embedding trauma for centuries to come.
Over many lifetimes, betrayed; severed from my soul.
And now, I’ve returned to my throne, upon my Old Hags Chair,
that magical rock looking out to the Hill of Tara and Uisneach…
I call on you today to be fierce;
I call on you to strip away your lies
I call on you to return to your innate power.
Witches! Rise Up and Return to Your Power.
Witches! Rise Up. Now is the Hour.
Witches! Rise Up and Step Up to Your Throne.
Witches Rise Up. It’s time to Come Home.