To the Goddess as DEATH

                   Under Your Milky Way
                             And slow-revolving Bear,     
                   Frogs from the alder-thicket pray       
                   In terror of the judgement day,       
                             Loud with repentance there.    
                   The log they crowned as king            
                             Grew sodden, lurched and sank. 
                   Dark waters bubble from the spring,      
                   An owl floats by on silent wing,       
                             They invoke You from each bank.
                   At dawn You shall appear,             
                             A gaunt, red-wattled crane,   
                   She Whom they know too well for fear,  
                   Lunging Your beak down like a spear    
                             To fetch them home again.   
from "The White Goddess" by Robert Graves

(publishers: Farrar, Straus & Giroux. p 486)

To the Goddess as DEATH-IN-LIFE

    Upon the soil--(crushed rubies? Or the pomegranate's garnet seeds?)       
   And ridged with mounds like graves                                         
   Of giants and earth-worms, two Noachian survivors contemplate            
   Their glories of the past, their future state.                             
   The small red Worm, rubied with dews of Death, declared:                   
   `My redness is from Adam. I, the coral-plant,                              
   Built by a million lives, endeavours, toils, loves, glories,               
   Am the first and last Democracy. The sun                                   
   Is not more universal in its love. And I have brothers                     
   Who live in the flesh of Negroes, and are thick                            
   As lute-strings, and as powerful. I have others                            
   Who sing the praise of Death with a sweet tongue                         
   Great venomous serpents in the unknown Africa; they carry                  
   A gold bell on their tails, which ever ringeth                             
   As they proceed, and like an angel singeth.'                               
   Then said her enemy the HenÄÄthe musty, dusty density,                     
   The entity of primal, flightless, winged Stupidity:                        
   `See how the Eagle falls like thunder from his height                      
   And tears that continent of raging fire,                                   
   The heart, from the tiger roaring like the sea,                            
   And bears it to his nest                                                   
   Wherein the huge eggs rest                                                 
   From whence will break the young, the unfledged Murders:                   
   (So, young ambitions lie in the heart of Man).                             
   O you into whose maw                                                       
   The heart of Man will fall                                                 
   As you will fall to mine:                                                  
   I am more powerful than the father of those Murders.                       
   It was no Eagle, but a fusty Hen                                           
   That pecked the fire-seed from Prometheus' heart, a crazy chilling         
   Hen-coop Laughter, the first Criticism, killing                            
   The fire he brought to men,                                                
   As Age kills young Desire.'                                                
   The Worm said, `I am small, my redness is from Adam.                       
   But conquerors tall                                                        
   Come to my embrace as I were Venus. I                                      
   Am the paramour in the last bed of love, and mine, the kiss               
   That gives Eternity.                                                       
   I am Princess of Darkness. Yet the huge gold world,                        
   With all plantations, powers of gold growth that shall be the bread of man,
   Arise from the toil of the small, the mighty Worm beneath the earth--     
   The blind, all-seeing Power at her great work of death and of rebirth.' 

by Edith Sitwell
from: Selected Poems - Chosen with an Introduction by John Lehmann
To the Goddess as EARTH
     Divine Goddess,
     Mother Nature,
     Who dost generate all things
     and bringest forth ever anew
     the sun
     which Thou hast given to the nations;
     Guardian of sky and sea
     and of all Gods and powers;
     through Thy influence
     all nature is hushed and sinks to sleep...
     Again, when it pleases Thee,
     Thou sendest forth the glad daylight
     and nurturest life
     with Thine eternal surety;
     and when the spirit of man passes,
     to Thee it returns.
     Thou indeed art rightly named
     Great Mother of the Gods;
     Victory is in Thy divine name.
     Thou art the source of the strength
     of peoples and Gods;
     without Thee
     nothing can either be born
     or made perfect;
     Thou art mighty,
     Queen of the Gods.
     I adore Thee as divine,
     I invoke Thy name;
     vouchsafe to grant that which I ask of Thee,
     so I shall return thanks to Thy Godhead
     with the faith that is Thy due.
From a 12th. century English herbal (Brit. Mus. MS. Harley, 1585, ff 12v-13r)
translated from the Latin by Robert Graves.

To the Goddess as EARTH


     O sweet spontaneous 
     earth how often have
            fingers of
     prurient philosophers pinched
     , has the naughty thumb
     of science prodded 
         beauty          , how
     often have religions taken
     thee upon their scraggy knees
     squeezing and

     buffeting thee that thou mightest conceive
     to the incomparable
     couch of death thy

           thou answerest

     them only with

To the Goddess as EARTH

         To the Woman in the Earth
         Who is my first and ever Beloved
         Whose smiles and rages and storms and weepings
         and tremblings and lashings and eruptions
         and ripenings and witherings and musings
         are my life, my terror, my thought, my wild joy
         and all of beauty I ever want to know
         Who takes me into Her after every journeying
         Who is my source, my end, and my obsession

         To my rainbow Warrior Women

         May we walk in beauty
Paula Gunn Allen
invocation from: "The Sacred Hoop"

To the Goddess as GODDESS

     Dialing all Goddesses everywhere
     Please reconnect me
     I'm in despair.

     The harness of this mortal soul
     Has broken in two
     And I'm

     Don't go away -
          I'm so ashamed that I said it
     Don't go away -
          I'd rather die than be alone -
     Don't go away -

     Whether it's animal urge
       Or in my genes
     My brain's on fire
       And my thoughts are extreme.

     Don't go away!
          I'm so ashamed that I said it -
     Don't go away!
          I'd rather die than be alone -
     Don't go away -

     It's Your powerful influence over me -  

Beverly Goodacre 7/26/82

To the Goddess as GODDESS

       * I am a channel for the powers of healing and of change.            
       * I unite my will with all womyn who are making new the world.       
       * I am trust in my sisters: my spirit responds to their love.        
       * I am compassion for confusion, especially my own.                  
       * I am a summer stream in the dry lands, miraculous and full. My     
         willows are the only trees for miles.                              
       * My eyes grow sharper and stronger every day. I eat what my body    
         needs. I let my body be, all the way out to her edges.             
       * I am centered and calm, I let life ripen and fall, my will is      
         one with the Goddess.                                              
       * I see both outward and inward. My prophecy is clear and true.      
       * I accept all gifts of the Goddess calmly, without anxiety,         
         without wanting more, or less, or forever. 

(from a post-card mailed to me by Katherine Singleton.
On the back "Meditations for Womyn" copyright 9981, 1981 by Jean Sirius.
Sirius P.P. box 28722)

To the Goddess as GODDESS
                        To the Goddess named Mary 

                  O Dive custos Auriacae Domus,                  
                  Et spes labantis certior imperi,               
                  O rebus adversis vocande,                      
                  O superum decus in secundis.                   
                  Seu te fluentem pronus ad Isida                
                  In vota fervens Oxonidum chorus                
                  Seu te precantur quos remoti                   
                  unda lavat properata Cami,                     
                  Descende, descende coelo non ita creditas      
                  Visurus aedes praesidiis tuis.                 
                  Descende, descende visurus penates Caesaris et,
                  et penetrale sacrum, penetrale sacrum.         
                  Maria a Musis flebilis occidit,                
                  Maria gentis deliciae breves,                  
                  Maria occidit.                                 
                  O flete Mariam,                                
                  O flete Camoenae.                              
                  O flete Divae!                                 
                  Flete Dea moriente.                            

O divine One, guardian of the House of Orange, steadfast hope of a tottering 
empire, you to whom we call in adversity, you our highest glory in times of 
prosperity; whether a gathering of Oxford men by the flowing Isis prays 
fervently to you, or whether they beseech you that are washed by the hurrying 
waves of the Cam, descend from heaven and behold this household, entrusted to 
your care when not thus [afflicted]. Descend, see the king's household and its 
innermost sanctuary. Mary, mourned by the Muses, is fallen: Mary, so briefly 
the delight of her race. O weep, Muses, for Mary; weep, Divine Ones, for the 
dying Goddess. 

Source: Three Elegies on the Much Lamented Loss of Our Late Most Gracious Queen Mary, by Henry Playford, 1695.


              i must speak, o america, for i am angry 

        we live in many oft spacious rooms                             
                                        of the house of the turtle, 

        one of seven great houses
                grand-earth-mother raised above her broad waters
                        for the life she has borne,
                                        would yet bear for ages 

        we share this creeping crust house 
                with bugs and beasts, 
                        grasses green and granites grey 
                        scapes of sky, rinsing rain and clans of clouds
                        valleys vast and forests fervent 

                with ant, apple and antelope 
                        white bass and waterlily 
                        sparrow hawks and spring 

        hear me, o america, for i am angry

        we bury our rooms,
                heaping garbage on our grandmother.
        we raze our splendid house,
                felling our forests and other essential furnishings
                fouling our waters and grandmother's breath 
                chasing, indeed erasing 
                        our crawling and walking.
                                climbing and winging sisters and brothers,
                then erecting metropolises of monuments
                        to mark the graves we gouge
                                from grandmother's ground of being

        i cry out, o america, for i am angry

        we wantonly renovate our clear open rooms,
                ripping out grandmother's beautiful
                                        and elegant furniture
                and cluttering our spaces with trappings and luxuries.
        we cram ourselves into abodes crowded into metropolises
                        after obliterating or evicting all other life

        we waste ourselves,
                        piling ravaged minds and starving bodies
                                in rancid corners of our rotting metropolises.
        we crush human life,
                dumping throw-away people in societal gutters,
                        then thoughtlessly or callously
                                else haughtily or derisively
                        flushing their souls down social sewers 

        harken to me, o america, for i am angry

        our house of love and sharing and equality
                we sell to hate, greed and status 

        we gad thru-out the house,
                        hardening, then jackhammering the fertile floors,
                slashing the floral curtains,
                bashing the rock walls,
                blocking off wind and lights-washed windows
                                and piling misery under carpets.
        we clap squalor into countless closets,
                frantic to cordon it off
                        from the eyes of emptied lives.
        we poach on the porches
                        of native people who dwell there
                                hoping to hold them for grandmother

        i rebuke you, o america, for i am angry
        we prattle about mastering grandmother
                        about progress
                        about freeing ourselves from her cruel yoke,
                while clinging to arrogance,

        we praise our crazed ideas and ethics,
                infesting all of grandmother with our industries,
                infusing many of her human children with our lust

        her houses now teem with termites ravenous for her wealth
                and rapaciously devouring her walls and foundations
        sewer rats gorge on oil and coal
                                        aging in her special cellars.
        they gorge on uranium and other deadly matter
                threading thru and cashed in her basements. 
        besmearing her floors with their piss, whit and slime, 
                                choking her rooms with their stench,
                they scurry to her waters and bathe in her rivers
                        to fill her lifelines with filth

        the gnats springing from the rat droppings swarm about her,
                stinging her tearful eyes
                stifling her wheezing windways
                nesting in and logging her pores

        listen, o america, for i am angry

        some people refuse to gallivant 
                                        with hate, greed and status.
        cherishing love and harmony with grandmother,
                        they isolate themselves on room edges
                                else in corners or closets 

        on these sacred people 
                we daren't lay our loathsome hands 
                        or force our hollow lives

        we must let those revering grandmother 
                live in peace and harmony with her 
                        while all people struggle to live
                                in peace and harmony with one another

        we swept aside the sacred ones.
        doing so,
                we sinned in the name of an overweening god.
        ravaging grandmother's rooms and destroying her wombs,
                we scorned our souls and lost our grace

        now only those revering grandmother
                can sweep her houses clear
                and cleanse us of our sins.
        the sacred ones along
                can remove our dead selves,
                        returning to us our eternal selves
                and remove our emptiness,
                        restoring our grace

        heed me, o america

        for destiny commands that
                i change my cracking whip of anger
                        into a fan of compassionate reason
                                so that
                        i might waft you with inspiring feeling
                                and fragrantly compelling though

        but let not my manner deceive you
                for twill neither move one primal parent
                        nor sooth the other's wrath
        hear, heed this:

        "ah," cosmic father sighed, 
                as he and his spouse bent to tend
                                        to their beloved wailing child.
        "the maggots tormenting her also swaddle her
                                                in heat and smoke
        they shall destroy themselves
                and their rotting corpses will nurture her
                        while she heals herself"

        "yes," cosmic mother replied.
                "they shall contort in agony and die slowly.
            fittingly so

        "but they also damn blameless life
                and worthy maggots.
                        they scar her

        "why should she suffer further 
                owing to maggot conceit? 
        "come, husband 
                let us bestir a flock of sun hawks.
        let them swoop from their star abodes,
                burn their talons into the wicked maggots
                        and carry them off writhing and aflame

        "else let vajra's lightning glance strike them" 

o d ludyeh
january 1992

jerry mander wrote the book, "In the Absence of the Sacred" 

        the native american stories i've read refer to north and south america 
   as turtle island 

        creeping crust - a tv documentary said the continents move; america's west 
   coast drifts    west at the rate of about an inch a year 

   vajra (thunderbolt) hell is an inescapable buddhist hell 

To the Goddess as GODDESS


                        The smoke upon your altar dies, 
                                The flowers decay, 
                        The Goddess of your sacrifice 
                                Has flown away. 
                        What profit then to sing or slay 
                        The sacrifice from day to day? 

                        "We know the Shrine is void," they said,
                                "The Goddess flownÄÄ 
                        Yet wreaths are on the altar laidÄÄ 
                                The altar stone 
                        Is black with fumes of sacrifice, 
                        Albeit She has fled our eyes. 

                        For, it may be, if still we sing 
                                And tend the Shrine, 
                        Some Deity on wandering wing 
                                May there incline; 
                        And, finding all in order meet, 
                        Stay while we worship at Her feet."     

L'ENVOI by Rudyard Kipling

To the Goddess as MOTHER

My heart, my Mother; 
My heart, my Mother! 
My heart of transformations. 

from Ch. XXX, p. 147, The Book of the Dead
translated by E. A. Wallis Budge.

To the Goddess as MOTHER

You alone can grant us forgiveness, 
Great Mother, Brahma-high, 
You we salute, 
Whose mercy lies all about us 
Like a blaze of light. 
Enthroned on high, 
Higher than the most-high, 
You too contemn the cosmic laws: 
Oneness of mind and being, You are yet 
Duality in Your union of the sexes. 
Eternal creations eternally 
Roll into being at Your mighty summons; 
Beauty and love rejoice therein, 
Ebbing and exulting 
On the shores of everlasting joy. 
You open Your eye and in whirl of color 
Patterns of creation go dancing by, 
A dance through eternity, 
Going and coming in countless ranks, 
O Mother, O mildness. 
Your game of creation calls worlds into being, 
Dashes them back into nothingess and ruin - 
We laud you, all-powerful Mistress. 

from the Saktigita
quoted in Myths by Alexander Eliot.

To the Goddess as MOTHER

The Mother of Songs, 
The Mother of our whole seed,
Bore us in the beginning.
She is the Mother of all races of men
And the Mother of all tribes.
She is the Mother of the thunder,
The Mother of the rivers,
The Mother of trees
And of all kinds of things.                     
She is the Mother of songs and dances.
She is the Mother of the older brother stones.
She is the Mother of the grain
And the Mother of all things.                   
She is the Mother
Of the younger brother Frenchmen
And of the strangers.
She is the Mother 
Of the dance paraphenalia
And of all temples,
And the only Mother we have

She is the 
Mother of the animals,
The only one,
And the Mother of the Milky Way.
It was the Mother Herself
Who began to baptize.
She gave us the limestone coca dish.            
She is the Mother of the rain,
The only one we have. 
She alone is the Mother of things,
She alone.                                      
And the Mother
Has left a memory in all temples.
With Her sons, the saviors,
She left songs and dances
As a reminder.
Thus the priests, the fathers,
And the older brothers have reported. 

Song of the Kagaba Indians, Colombia
from The Great Mother, page 85
quoted by Eric Neuman

To the Goddess as MOTHER

Your Mother is in you, and you in Her. She bore you; She gives you life. It was She 
who gave to you    

To the Goddess as MUSE

All saints revile Her, and all sober men 
Ruled by the God Apollo's golden meanÄÄ 
In scorn of which I sailed to find Her 
In distant regions likeliest to hold Her 
Whom I desired above all things to know, 
Sister of the mirage and echo. 

It was a virtue not to stay, 
To go my heastrong and heroic way 
Seeking Her out at the volcano's head, 
Among pack ice, or where the track had faded 
Beyond the cavern of the seven sleepers: 
Whose broad high brow was white as any leper's, 
Whose eyes were blue, with rowan-berry lips, 
With hair curled honey-coloured to white hips. 

Greek sap of Spring in the young wood a-stir 
Will celebrate the Mountain Mother, 
And every song-bird shout awhile for Her; 
But I am gifted, even in November 
Rawest of seasons, with so huge a sense 
Of Her nakedly worn magnificence 
I forget cruelty and past betrayal, 
Careless of where the next bright bolt may fall. 

In Dedication, from The White Goddess by Robert Graves.

To the Goddess as MUSE

Lady, Lady, Clay-moulder, Fetus-former, Dough-kneader, Ancient Mother Evolution. 

Earth, Earth, 
sun round whirling hear thy daughter! 
Make my matter true reflection, make my matter worth recalling. 

Fair Juno, 
wise bowed Hag, 
curl us each measure 
th' shape of our thought ring. 

Invocation, from Her Book of Transformations 1984 by FW.

To the Goddess as MUSE


Lady of life, 
Bride, Bread-baker, Provider; 
Goddess of co-evolution 
and the yearly revolutions 
that goad and guide 
and dissolve it. 

Thou art, Muse, most wonderful 
beyond the greatest artist's imaginings. 
Queen-Mother of generations, 
Inexhaustible Mystery. 

Fair Juno, 
Wise bowed Hag, 
coil us each measure, 
the shape of our thought ring. 

Invocation, from Her Book of Transformations 1983 by FW. 

To Several Goddesses

bare-bodied and bareback bestride their mounts, choking, sweating and 
gagging, the dhughater deth girthed the earth. 

"fucking fool arse!" gore grist suddenly bellowed smacking her skittish 
mule's buttocks. 

but hrim kill sat atop her dappled steed grinning, thinking folly and 
doom behooved humankind, and eyes burning and tearing, blood lave gripped, 
then tugged on her rearing stallion's black mane. 

"hraesvelg wields fiery, not frost wings against them," lifter of sooth said 
grimly on the other side of the circle, while, beside her, freedom lover 
stroked and hushed her whinneying blue-brown mare. 

lifthrasir, the dhughater leader, at last  heeded her sisters' moans and 
oaths, however, bade all fall deeper into the sky. 

seeming to fly out of the very sun, a band of muses, graces and deities 
shortly ascended the sky atop winged horses.  they soared to lifthrasir's 
rear, alit on an olympian cloud. 

then wroth of fjorgyn, borne in twain with lifthrasir, galloped thru the 
band, reined her horse to a halt beside her blood sister.  peering high, low 
and to both sides, she sat tall and mum, fidgeted with her horse's mane at 

"fuckers, assholes" she finally spat.  "shitheads. 

"live berserk, fell woods, foul water.  darken the sky with filth and 
bane, then stew your stupid enthralled selves, throwing all other life in the 

"but before nidth-hogg swoops upon you, we'll find a home for true life 
somewhere afar.  then we'll sweep through your rotted breath to pluck native 
elms and ashes from the grave, cart hymir buckets of water to clear ponds in a 
holy land." 

"peace, erinye" the graces implored.  "patience, pardon." 

"love ascended from the abyss of chaos, was borne of darkness and death," 
the titan, memory, spoke gently. 

descend to the human host, radiant of reason," said the goddess of dawn.  
"enlighten the enthroned, counsel courage, inspire intellects." 

"restore the firmament with harmony," the muses chimed. 

"balm the air with music, move souls with song.  whirl away hostility with 
dance and imbue the rivers, lakes and seas with poetry and the fervor for 

o d ludyeh 
august 1990 

dhughater deth - the daughters of death 
hrim - frost 
sooth - truth 
wroth - wrath 
from norse myth 
hraesvelg - a giant disguised as an eagle whose flapping wings cause the 
frost wings - a three year winter was supposed to precede doomsday 
lifthrasir - eaager for life; the name of a woman who would survice 
doomsday and mother children to repeople the earth 
fjorgyn - the goddess of earth 
elms and ashes - the first woman was made from a fallen elm; 
the first man from a fallen ash. 
hymir - a giant who had a five miles deep cauldron 
from greek myth: 
olympian - from olympus, the home of the gods 
erinye - a fury; the furies pursued sinners on earth or in the underworld 
graces - daughters of zeus, the chief god, and eurynome; they danced 
and sang, gave life its bloom 
muses - daughters of zeus and mnemosyne (memory); inspirers of poetry, song, dance, other arts 

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