Into the dark, the pale light of the waning moon brings forth shapeless shadows; bushes, a wandering stone field wall, nameless areas of blackness. Some still, some moving; no night for good folk to stray from cot or castle. Black hares a-move across the moors, black cattle idly gossip together, one old woman dressed in black searches the grass for secret herbs. And there amongst the standing stones, age heavy upon their backs, three hags dare all the mercy of God's Holy Mother Church to make the magic of an older race.
``Call old Mother Piggot, she knows the proper words for warts.'' ``Tis Goody Nurse you'll need if it's a son ye want.'' ``Tis naught but an Old Wives Tale.'' ``Don't mind Mother, she hasn't been herself since she went through the Change of Life.''
Looming high over the imagination of humankind, the shadow of the Crone casts a miasma of fear and uselessness, power and casting- out, across the myths of our race and society.
I have talked and talked to women who either have arrived at crone time or who are preparing themselves for this transition and we have found much to talk about. And I think that it is important that we keep right on talking after the season of Gatherings has passed for the year. I have absolutely no interest in trying to start a newsletter for Crones, nor really of founding OWL (Old Woman's League), SOW (Salty Old Women), CRONE (Clearly Rational Older Natural Energy), nor HAG (Honorable Aged Geniuses).
However, I, no more than many of you, want to have to wait until next year to get a chance to discuss all these fascinating topics. So how about some suggestions, and perhaps some offers of help. Would we like to cooperate in an APAZine* which dispenses with an editing and layout burden, leaving some low- level bookkeeping which I don't mind doing. Does someone feel like working on a Newsletter? Do we want to form a loose organization as part of or instead of the above? Or are most of us too busy to do anything about this between gatherings?
I'll be sending this letter to people I know personally and to many Pagan publications; you'll probably see it often enough to be sick of the whole idea. But there is a lot of magick available in the Time of the Crone. There is a lot of sociological pressure to understand, combat or accept. And there is a whole lot of our lives left for us to function as Crones. If we don't figure out what it is and what to do with it, nobody else will.
So write me at the address below (SASE appreciated) and let me know what you think about the whole idea, what you might be willing to do, what insights you may have about Crone Time - let's figure out what has been left out of all the books. We're already ``Uppity Women'' and we've nothing to lose but a bad rap. (Crones are assumed to be women more or less at the age of menopause or past it. Baby Crones are any who realize that this time is not far away.)Grey Cat P.O. Box 181 Crossville, TN 38555
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