Beauty, music, bellydance, the Dark Goddess, Nature, magick, ritual-theatre, death and love.

compendium of Aepril's communications on art, beauty, bellydance, the dark, faery tale, nature, magick, ritual, theatre, death and love. The talk of a priestess and shaman of the Dark Goddess.

Friday, March 16, 2012

“F” is for Forest Witch

The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.

I am a Shamanic Witch, and my love is the Forest. 

The Forest is symbolic of the unconscious and its mysteries. It is an entryway into the Lower world, the world of shadow and transformation. In fairytales, the heroic Princess often has to travel the forest to transform herself. She meets here the Baba Yaga, the challenging Hag, the Evil Queen, the Dark Goddess, The Black Madonna, Our Lady of the Dark Forest, Our Lady of the Great Place Below…

As I continue to explore in life, I am the naïve Princess, still. And, as an initiate of the Mysteries of the Descent, I am the dark challenging Witch as well. Both sides of me roam the Wood, in the daytime and the Night, under the New Moon, the full, and the Dark. 

 I am Raven totem; the photos posted here by Pamela Joye show a ritual done in the Salem Woods under the influence of the Crow Moon. I wear a skirt by Wings of Sin depicting the Full Moon with the Black Corvid Goddess. I am The Morrigan.

 The Moon that day was in Virgo. Virgo is Virgin, “whole unto the self”. I am the Black Madonna, Our Lady of the Black Woods. She is "black, but comely", as in the Song of Songs. The unknown one. 

Spirit of Wind blesses and clears

Calling the Quarters
Bowing to the Black Madonna

I chose this time to do Magick that protects and heals, that clears away that which no longer serves, that purifies. To this end, the Great Wind Spirits, element of air, blew with mighty force, clearing away all that was destructive to this Wood. 

 The Witch of the East pulled off my hair ornaments and blew them away, challenging my vanity. 

I walk the Forest; I hold my hands in prayer for the dispossessed, the ones who can’t speak for themselves. The Coyotes who live in this Woods, raising families and hunting for food. They are vilified, but they are here because they belong; they take the place of the Wolf who once lived here. It is the absence of the Wolf that has caused the debilitating Lyme’s disease; the Wood has its lessons, if we but listen. It is the Black Madonna that holds the Coyote and Wolf close in Her arms, protecting, respecting, cherishing.

I speak with the Spirits of the Invisisbles, the Ancestors who lived in this Forest as Natives to this land. I can only guess at and envision your powerful magic and medicine.

Also to the Fae, who live and play in this Wood.

Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery hand in hand,
For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand.
~William Butler Yeats, "The Stolen Child"

The Dark Lady is also Mother to the Swans and Geese at the Forest Estuary. She protects and provides for them. And the singing birds in the trees. And the trees themselves; it is said that those who understand the trees, understands herself.  Here is where the World Tree lives. All of us ARE the World Tree, and we do best to protect and love the Forest and Her gifts, to love ourselves in our complexity. 

The Forest is a kind of sanctuary, a place to become whole again. Entry in the Online Etymology Dictionarysanctuary Look up sanctuary at
mid-14c., "...set apart for holy worship," from Anglo-Fr. sentuarie, from O.Fr. sainctuarie, from L.L. sanctuarium "a sacred place, shrine"... . General (non-ecclesiastical) sense of "place of refuge or protection" is attested from 1560s; as "land set aside for wild plants or animals to breed and live" 

Many Blessings on you, O Great Forest!


  1. Beautiful post! I love the Forest; it's one of my fave places to be, and I'm blessed to live just minutes away! Wonderful pics :)

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    1. I find that those who accuse others of having too much "ego" do not claim their own power or beauty. And you don't own your words, either, as you remained anonymous. What is holding you back? Practice some self-love instead of spending your time being bitchy and bitter.

  3. Keltikmystique: thank you for your kind words! Maybe I will see you roaming through the Wood sometime soon.

  4. Awesome photos. Some day we must do a shoot. I'm saving up for a "real" camera.

  5. Replies
    1. Thank you, Polly! You are very kind!
      I give most of the credit to Pamela Joye, who took the photos.

  6. loved this post and photos and loved your comments about the 'ego' - very true.

    1. You are awesome, Roz! Thank you for your kind words and support.

  7. Lovely! Thanks!!! Very poetic both in words and images.

    1. Nattstugan, Thank you!!! You are very kind.

  8. Something magical happens to my soul when images and imagery-filled words come together to create something this whimsical. You've charmed me ;-)