bloodteethandflame

A life in threes

Month for Loki: Five.

“Lokkr is the art of calling something towards oneself.

Lokkr is the art of compelling, the art of affecting change from the inside.

Lokkr is the art of singing the sweetest songs, using the most alluring words.

The most irresistible commands come from the breath, yet they seem as fragile as leaves in the wind

Lokkr is how we draw energy, how we pull magic towards us.”

                                                                                                 -Valas, Haegen

Artwork by Muirin007

Month for Loki: Four

Baby, You’re a firework…

Month for Loki: Three

So.

Here we are.

Another July for some Lokeans to celebrate Loki, to honor Loki.

Oddly enough, there’s a new show out on cable TV’s Disney+ this month featuring Loki as its central character.

Coincidence?

If it were so, it would be the strangest kind, for it is not as if the rest of the world could have known that Lokeans might celebrate Loki in July.

And granted, this new show is based upon the Loki of Marvel (comic book) Universe rather than the Loki of Norse mythology, and yet, I cannot shake this sense of deja-vu.

You see, this new show has caused yet another influx of folks on the Internet, curious to find out more about Loki as a God in the Norse pantheon.

So why the deja-vu? You might be surprised to know that there was a similar influx of folks seeking to join – or otherwise create – online Heathen groups because Marvel Studios’ film, Thor had hit theaters during the summer of 2011.

And that’s how it all began for a lot of folks – myself included! – back in the summer of 2011. Perhaps it was that influx of the Loki-curious that led to the inadvertent creation of ‘July for Loki’ in 2012 in the first place*

What I do recall about that summer in 2012 was how annoyed a lot of Heathen folks were, looking down upon the ‘newbies’ – who were inspired to look into the Norse pantheon by watching Thor– and how arguments arose over the the lack of legitimacy of Marvel vs. academic sources. (And, in regards to Loki, lest we forget, the renewed interest in Loki became a point of contention in existing groups such as the Troth and Asatru Fellowship.)

Do I wish to re-visit those arguments? Personally, that’s not what I’m doing here.

I don’t begrudge folks who watch MCU’s Loki/Avengers for wanting to know more about the Norse deities by reading the Norse myths on their own time. What concerns me is when people fail to differentiate between the Marvel comic book characters and the Norse deities, or worse, consider themselves on par with academic scholars because they’ve read the MCU comic books.

(Besides, if you wanted my opinion, I’d be more apt to suggest reading D’Aulaire’s Norse Mythology than Journey into Mystery #85 for a basic introduction to Loki. But what do I know?)

*I just find it delightful to see ‘July for Loki’ come full circle; another influx of new Lokeans re-invigorating the Pagan/Heathen communities ten years after the last one.

But what’s different in 2021 is that there are so many more books out there about Loki.

Here are some of my favorites:

Loki For You: Getting to Know the God of Mischief, T. Sheil and A. Sheil, Milihistriot Quarterly, Freehold, New Jersey, 2008

Playing with Fire: An Exploration of Loki Laufeyjarson, Dagulf Loptson, Asphodel Press, Hubbardston, MA, 2014

Pagan Portals: Loki Trickster and Transformer, Dagulf Loptson, Moon Books/John Hunt Publishing, Washington, USA. 2020

Worshipping Loki: A Short Introduction, Silence Maestas, 2015.

God in Flames, God in Fetters: Loki’s Role in the Northern Religions, Stephan Grundy, Troth, Incorporated, 2015.

~~~~

Month for Loki: Two

July is here and for some Lokeans, this month is devoted to Loki.

Here are some basic ideas for devotional activities to honor Loki.

Though this list is by no means comprehensive, I am sharing in hopes that it may be helpful for those looking for inspiration:

~ Loki is a fantastic story-teller and He is not called Silvertongue for nothing! Write a blog entry, a poem, or a short story.


~ Some devotees associate Loki with fire. If you do, light a candle for Him, and think a moment about how Loki has kindled a flame in your life.


~ Loki is a God of the Body, a God who appreciates all of the ways that a body can experience joy. If you can, take some time to enjoy living in your body, by dancing, singing, or exercising, and dedicate that activity to Him.


Do something out of your comfort zone – push yourself to do something new – even if it’s only once. Be open to adventure. Be open to change.


~ Loki is a God of the hearth. Cook up that new recipe or bake Him something from scratch, and offer to share it with Him.


~ Loki is a God of Luck and chance: Play the Lotto/buy a scratch ticket.


~ As a Jotun, Loki is a God of nature. Go for a walk. Enjoy the outdoors – even if it’s the short walk to your car. Or plant some flowers and dedicate them to Him.


~ Loki is a God of Laughter – Watch a comedy, share a joke, play – laugh!


~ Loki is a God of Getting Sh*t Done. Do a necessary but thankless task – and dedicate it to Him.


~ Loki is a Parent Who loves children. If you can, take some time to play with kids. Or think about (or do) something you’d enjoyed as a kid. Recapture that sense of wonder and fun.

~ Loki is a God of growth and change. What has changed in your life since you ‘met’ Loki? Find a photo of yourself from before you met or began working with Loki. See the differences as proof that you can change, grow, and learn. Celebrate how far you’ve come!

~ Loki is a God of Many Faces. How does He/She appear to you? If you can, draw, paint or sculpt a likeness of Him/Her, or simply create a digital image in Photoshop or Paint.

~ Loki is a God who values Truth, and encourages us to be true to ourselves. What is something that is true of you? Speak your truth, even if your voice wavers. Stand up for yourself and for what you believe in.

~ Loki is a God of Otherness, Outcasts and Outsiders. Just as you honor Loki when you stand up for yourself, you honor Him by standing up for others too. Go to a protest, stand up to bullies, and be an ally to those who struggle to be heard/find acceptance.

~~~

These are just a few suggestions for things that you can do to celebrate Loki this July…and remember: Don’t feel like you gotta do something *every* day!

Just take some time this month to enjoy Loki….and enjoy yourself ❤

Month for Loki: One

My altar

5 years.

A Poem for Pulse

By Jameson Fitzpatrick

Last night, I went to a gay bar
with a man I love a little.
After dinner, we had a drink.
We sat in the far-back of the big backyard
and he asked, What will we do when this place closes?
I don’t think it’s going anywhere any time soon, I said,
though the crowd was slow for a Saturday,
and he said—Yes, but one day. Where will we go?
He walked me the half-block home
and kissed me goodnight on my stoop—
properly: not too quick, close enough
our stomachs pressed together
in a second sort of kiss.
I live next to a bar that’s not a gay bar
—we just call those bars, I guess—
and because it is popular
and because I live on a busy street,
there are always people who aren’t queer people
on the sidewalk on weekend nights.
Just people, I guess.
They were there last night.
As I kissed this man I was aware of them watching
and of myself wondering whether or not they were just.
But I didn’t let myself feel scared, I kissed him
exactly as I wanted to, as I would have without an audience,
because I decided many years ago to refuse this fear—
an act of resistance. I left
the idea of hate out on the stoop and went inside,
to sleep, early and drunk and happy.
While I slept, a man went to a gay club
with two guns and killed forty-nine people.
Today in an interview, his father said he had been disturbed
recently by the sight of two men kissing.
What a strange power to be cursed with:
for the proof of men’s desire to move men to violence.
What’s a single kiss? I’ve had kisses
no one has ever known about, so many
kisses without consequence—
but there is a place you can’t outrun,
whoever you are.
There will be a time when.
It might be a bullet, suddenly.
The sound of it. Many.
One man, two guns, fifty dead—
Two men kissing. Last night
I can’t get away from, imagining it, them,
the people there to dance and laugh and drink,
who didn’t believe they’d die, who couldn’t have.
How else can you have a good time?
How else can you live?
There must have been two men kissing
for the first time last night, and for the last,
and two women, too, and two people who were neither.
Brown people, which cannot be a coincidence in this country
which is a racist country, which is gun country.
Today I’m thinking of the Bernie Boston photograph
Flower Power, of the Vietnam protestor placing carnations
in the rifles of the National Guard,
and wishing for a gesture as queer and simple.
The protester in the photo was gay, you know,
he went by Hibiscus and died of AIDS,
which I am also thinking about today because
(the government’s response to) AIDS was a hate crime.
Now we have a president who names us,
the big and imperfectly lettered us, and here we are
getting kissed on stoops, getting married some of us,
some of us getting killed.
We must love one another whether or not we die.
Love can’t block a bullet
but neither can it be shot down,
and love is, for the most part, what makes us—
in Orlando and in Brooklyn and in Kabul.
We will be everywhere, always;
there’s nowhere else for us, or you, to go.
Anywhere you run in this world, love will be there to greet you.
Around any corner, there might be two men.

Kissing.

~~~~

5 years ago today, many people were killed or wounded in the Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, Florida. It was one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history.

Jameson Fitzpatrick, “A Poem for Pulse” from Bullets into Bells: Poets and Citizens Respond to Gun Violence.  Copyright © 2017 by Jameson Fitzpatrick. 

2021 Poetry Foundation, Poetry Foundation 61 W. Superior Street Chicago, IL 60654 USA

Pride.

Mother’s Day

Reading rhis article was helpful for me today, as Mother’s Day has always been a day of mixed emotions for me.

The Wild Will Call You Back

I can not express how much I love this poem composed by Gina Puorro. I think I might start reading this prayer/spell every day.

The Wild will call you back.

Through half-remembered dreams

and sunsets painted

in burnt sienna

and vermillion flames

she will call you back home.

The coyotes will wake you

from your sleep

with their clarion call

to keep your eyes

wide open.

How long have you been sleeping?

How much have you forgotten?

The Wild will call you back.

She will hang you upside down

and shake the nonsense

from the pockets

of your mind.

She will strip your soul naked

leaving you raw and exposed

under the searing glare

of the gods.

Offer up the holiness

of your confusion

and questions.

Dress yourself

in fireflies

and attune your senses

to awe

while you learn the slow seduction

of courting your muse.

Brush the stardust from your wings

and wipe the ocean from your eyes.

Flex your claws

dig your roots deep down

into the fertile earth

and show your fangs.

Gather pollen on your legs

and speak

in venom

and honey.

Peel back your colonized tongue

and let it hiss

and purr

and growl

and scream.

Do you remember

how to stalk

as predator

and how to surrender

as prey?

The Wild will call you back.

The owls know your real name

and will call you

from the darkness of night

to dance under the moon.

Crack your heart open

with your ancestors’ bones

and dance in the ecstasy

of your love

and your grief

with flailing limbs

bloody knees

and mud-stained feet.

Braid mugwort into your hair

and dream yourself

awake.

The Wild will call you back.

She will teach you how to die

again and again

and how to die well.

There is no difference

between your funeral pyre

and your birth canal.

Do not bother

to try and stop

the bleeding.

Love with the gentleness

and ferocity

of your whole

soft

tender being.

Feed the spirits

with your beauty

and sweetness

and ask them to show you

the way home.

~ Gina Puorro

Expectations