Badges of Defiance (and beauty)

I strolled into the pharmacy, removed my jacket, rolled it into a bundle, and tried to stick it in my shoulder bag… without success. “I might have to get a cart to haul my jacket around”, I said to the nurse who had accompanied me to pick up my meds.

“You don’t wear your coat indoors as much as you used to,” she said. “Are the hot flashes that bad?”

I opened my mouth to say yes, but frowned… and said, “No, not really. Not now. The chills and hot flashes get nasty at night, but I feel quite cool right now.” I peeled off my knitted cap, letting my sexy scalp and a bright grin reinforce my sense of coolness.

“Weird,” she said.

I nodded, agreeing with her ‘weird’ assessment. I mean, I’ve always hated to carry my jacket around… I’ve been known to keep the damn thing on even if I’m boiling in it.

But…

…some time later, while walking home from the hospital, jacket shoved in my bag (persistence or raw stubbornness pays off), I reexamined the exchange… and realized that my newly found determination not to wear my jacket (unless I must) is not weird at all: I enjoy showing off my one-breasted glory. I feel incredibly strong (and slightly superior *cough*) walking around with a symbol that roars: I am not only kicking breast cancer’s ass, but I am looking freaking amazing while doing it!

I just roared with pride-rich laughter, while typing the last sentence. Because to me, scars prove that when life kicked me in the (insert sensitive area here), I didn’t just kick back, but I kicked… and got up with learned lessons on my skin. And that, my Wicked Luvs, is wild magic that makes my beautiful (and modest) flesh stunning.

That understanding about my Self is what makes me appreciate the wisdom and love in Fleur Delacour’s reaction, after someone suggests that her fiancé’s new scars might make her reject him: “What do I care how ’e looks? I am good-looking enough for both of us, I theenk! All these scars show is zat my husband is brave!”

That understanding about my own value is what makes me want to chant the last few lines of Rommy’s “Signature of a Scar” into the heart and skin of the world:

That understanding of how I wish, I wish, I wish… everyone could feel about their own Selves is what inspired this year’s Beautiful Freaks Fest’s theme: Scars, Scars, Scars… Such Terrible Beauty!

Show off your stunning terrible with me: Let’s create art (short tales, dolls, poems, sculptures, paintings, spells, jewelry… anything you can think of) that celebrates the magic of embracing the scars life has marked our skins and minds with and turn all that hurt into an artful armor of terrible beauty.

click the banner for details

 

Pagan Culture Is Not Dead

I had an exchange with a friend who suggested that my “writings have been moving further and further away from their original witchy themes.” According to said friend, “[my] Pagan Culture died the day [I] moved from Blogger to WordPress.”

He is, of course, mistaken. My views have evolved (and thank goodness for that), my writing has been growing, and my blog has been relocated… but Pagan Culture is not dead. His notion is silly and rather sad. I say this because he has based his comment on the fact that I rarely ramble about what he considers “the important current events about the Pagan and Witchcraft community.”

My blog is about… well, me. I have always been a solitary witchy woman. Even when I took part in events put together by local and virtual groups, my practices were my own. My blog posts have always been about my life and my writing, about how I perceive the world—witchy and otherwise. My blog changes and grows with me. The same is true of my fiction and poetry.

In 2009, when I started blogging, my main concern was to show people that Witches were just… people: individuals who approached the world and its creatures in their own ways. I’m almost certain that in seven years, most people who know me also know that I’m a witchy woman. They might not be sure of what that means, not exactly… But following my blog has probably showed them that labels don’t matter all that much. I am people. My words speak to others. That is good.

And that, my Wicked Luvs, tells me that I’ve accomplished my initial blogging goal: anyone who takes the time to really, really look… has seen that Witches (or at least, witchy me) are neither better nor worse than they are. We are just different people—like the rest of the world, we love, we cry, we laugh, we get sick, we grow, we believe in magic, we are so freaking sexy… and some of us are extremely modest. Really, I’m very serious about this part, my modesty knows no bounds.

My Pagan Culture is alive and witching. It’s also free of stagnation. Since stagnation is the scum of the universe, freedom from its tentacles is a blessing. Don’t you think?

Read you later, my Luvs. Write you always…

P.S. On other non-dying news… If you haven’t joined Witches in Fiction 2016: Spelling Healing into a Rotting World, just follow the link. It would be very nice to have you… and coffee… or tea.

Yes, my teeth are quite sharp… and rather numerous.
(if you see the adverb police, tell them I was having one of those days *cough, cough*)
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