09/14/2017 by syrbal-labrys
A much better known pagan blogger known to many of my readers often writes about being “the witch of this place.” She writes about responsible living and stewarding of a place, in addition to ideals of doing magic to protect and promote an area. I feel, these days, I live in a smaller space – physically and mentally, and yes, magically. It is not that I disclaim being called a “witch” – but there are also other things I want to reclaim more than the name of one who attempts to “shape the invisible” – AND the visible, by means both mundane and magical.
Like the word “bitch.” I’ve been called a bitch since I was 17 years old. By men I wouldn’t fuck. By men I did fuck – but not in a fun sexy way, but in ways like sheltering their abused wives. By women whose ideas of propriety I refused to acknowledge, much less live by. I was called a bitch by my brother, and much later, by my sister. I’ve been called a bitch by an angry spouse. I’ve been called a bitch by neighbors, by my daughter, and by strangers who disapproved of my bumper stickers or Darwin fish. I’ve been called “evil” or “wicked” many times, usually when doing something assertive – when giving no more fucks and taking no more shit.
It never made me feel ashamed. It made me feel determined, stubborn, and willing to kick ass and take names. It made me a fighter. I’ve been known to say, “Call the Bitch, she will come.” I am a reasonable woman, a giving woman and a compassionate woman. Right up to the moment when I am not. Then I am the bitch of this place.
Then in defense of people I love and myself and the place I love, I become something unyielding, implacable. It can be when I say to one I am sheltering in my house, “You will NOT be a throw-away here.” It is because instead of going to Disney World “while lines are shorter” post-hurricane, I would be the person donating the money I was going to spend on that vacation. It is because I am a hopeless romantic who says, “That is WRONG” and I take that as a command to change that “it” for something better. I am not at peace when looking at evil or at wrong unless I am taking a wrecking ball of some sort to that evil, that wrong. If I can’t do aught else? I will point and shout about the wrong to engage others in the task of change with me.
I am the bitch of this place: this home that is welcoming and healing to those who come through its doors, this place with a labyrinth where I walk the dead “home” singing to them with a welcome in my voice, this place that is a sacred sanctuary.
Does America need “witches” of places? Most certainly. But I think America could use a lot more “bitches in place” reaffirming assertive feminist virtues and fighting the general apathy of “What can one woman do?” I am the bitch of this place, homing my sons — born and chosen, and sheltering women, healing where I can, avenging when I must, and standing by my often frustrating husband in his time of need. What place are YOU bitch of? There are plenty of places in need — claim yours today!