Legend Of The Nine Ninja Witches: An Earth Day Vision-Prayer.

{Photo by Jen Young}

{Photo credit: Jen Young}


They would have dressed to match the shadows on any given morning, these daughters of Gaia, but today is Earth Day; their black cat-suits are their uniforms, their wands are their weapons, and Her liberation is their mission.

None of these nine Priestesses were able to sleep last night, but their rage trumps their fatigue. They move to circle the tragic camp now, crouching like Durga’s tigers and biting their tongues.

The oldest of these sacred mercenaries chokes back tears, not wanting her grief to be perceived as weakness, and the youngest shakes with a bone-rattling fury.

All of them can see their Mother now, tethered to the last standing tree with chains made of gold and power-hunger. She was taken from them so long ago, and Her orphans can barely remember Her face; they can see it now, blindfolded and gagged.

One of the middle sisters raises a single finger to her lips, silencing the youngest Priestess. Her eyes tell the young one all of this: Just be quiet a little longer. It will be over soon. We will not leave without Her.

The heart-drums of the nine witches begin to beat in indignant unison as the reality of their Mother’s torture becomes visible. Gaia gasps for clean air, having been choked by greed for so long. Her skin is grey, with polluted blood running through Her veins.

Her bones have been broken, bits of Her beauteous flesh carved out, and the chains have stretched Her limbs to suit the will of Her captors. She has been painted and packed to create the illusion of acquiescence, but Her daughters know that their matriarch wants none of this.

No amount of red lipstick can mask Her black eyes, bloody nose, and broken teeth. She has been used and abused, but She is not without identity or esteem.

The Earth Mother is bound, but all the while, Her swollen womb nurtures humanity’s next generation.

It is humankind’s viability in our Mother’s belly, affirm the nine witches silently. We are not just rescuing Her now, we are liberating our great-granddaughters. They squeeze their wands a little more tightly and straighten their hoods. We were born for this.

They look to the oldest sister to give the signal, but she is overcome with tears sourced from the most painful of losses. She knows no amount of reparations can ever undo such horrific offenses, and it is too much to bear with a stone-face.

Surrounding their kidnapped Mother are small groups of the business-minded; they smoke rolls of thick carbon and toss their smoldering butts at Her. They haggle, spit, and laugh, exchanging bits of paper and shaking each other’s hands. Their eyes cannot even see Her anymore.

Clueless and complacent, these power-mongers have been raised here since they were young boys and girls. These blind ones grew up pouring sewage down the Mother’s throat, thinking nothing of it. How could they know any better? She is taken for granted in this place every goddamn day.

One of the men, a suited beast covered in oil, signs a contract and pats himself on the back. His partner hands him a butcher’s knife, and he moves toward the Earth Mother. What piece of Her will he take now? What is left? He feels entitled to all of Her, and, to him, She is little more than material property to be bought and sold.

The youngest daughter looks to the skies and grits her teeth to keep from unleashing her wrath. The clouds are thick, and the sun is gone. She has never seen the moon, but her sisters tell her it is there behind the muck. She doesn’t know what it means to breathe without her chest burning, and she’s never seen a butterfly.

Her knuckles turn white around her wand, and she stands. Her sisters exchange glances, and the oldest daughter wipes her tears.

The suited beast circles Gaia as if he was stalking a formidable adversary. But She is unconscious and chained, and he is a coward clad in designer clothes. The seven middle sisters now rise, and the youngest pulls the oldest to her feet.

We can wait no longer, the shape of their bodies say. It is time. We have come not to slaughter, but to vindicate. We have come not to rob this sloppy bunch of their precious riches, but to gift them with clarity. Today, we take our Mother home.

The nine surge into the camp, wands drawn, and the suited ones are confused. They are not outnumbered or out-moneyed, but they are out-powered and outmoded. Their passion is nothing compared to that of these women who rage so righteously.

The suited ones wonder: What could these black-clad shadow-walkers possibly have to be angry about? The one with the butcher’s knife stops in his tracks, and speaks: Women, why have you come? You clearly have everything you need. Look at you! What could you possibly want from us? We have given you so much!

The youngest sister snorts, and an older one spits her answer: We want our Mother back, and we’re not leaving without Her. The suited beasts erupt in unharmonious guffaws, but the knife-wielding beast’s brow is furrowed. He’s wondering how they’re going to get any work done with these witches here making trouble.

He’s wondering if they mean what they say, and he has a throbbing headache between his eyes.

Two of the middle sisters move stealthily, but without apology, toward their Mother. She still smells of ocean-water, hyacinths, and loamy earth, despite centuries of torment. Their hands shake as they pull the blindfold from Her eyes and gag from Her mouth, and Gaia’s eyelids flicker infinitesimally.

Another of the Earth Mother’s daughters moves to unchain Her arms from the charred tree trunk, and they fall limply at Her side, bloodied and broken. More sisters move to unbind Her ankles, hacking at the gold chains with their wands until the links crumble into so much dust.

The Mother rolls weakly to the ground, but Her eyes are wide open now.

The suited horde exchanges murmurs and glances, and they are no longer laughing. The armed beast drops his knife, for the first time, knowing what he has done.

You see, the oldest daughter manages to say past her sobs, She is your mother too.

And he does see, jaw falling open with guilt and grief.

Look! The youngest daughter points to her Mother’s skin as it takes on a brighter glow. Gaia’s cheeks get fatter and Her hair starts to grow. Her daughters help Her to sit up straight, and the last standing tree starts to flower. The Mother’s wounds heal, forming scars of remembrance on Her face and Her belly.

She strokes Her swollen womb, and gasps pervade the suited audience.

They all see now, falling to the ground in the deepest remorse that has ever been felt. They understand what they have done, and they know that the deepest of pockets cannot remedy their ills. Some of them clutch their third-eyes in pain, never having been so awake. Some of them weep for the animals who will not return.

The man who had threatened to cut a piece off his Mother right in front of his sisters now lays his head in Her lap, curled into fetal position as if he could somehow return to very womb he assaulted.

But the Earth Mother strokes his hair and whispers that all will be well: Hush, hush. You have awakened, my son. Feel the weight of your body on me now, and know me for the first time. I am everything, and the Great Shift has begun. See me, feel me, and know me.

The nine witches lie prostrate in reverence to their long-lost Mother, now liberated and vindicated. The rage of these ninja Priestesses finally soothed by the tears of those who they now know as their brothers and sisters.

Together, the family encircles their matriarch, chanting prayers of sacred gratitude, sisterhood and brotherhood, and natural magick. Every breath they take together heals Her, and Her body is fleshed out by every sound:

Mother, I see you. Mother, I feel you. Mother, I know you.

Mother, I see you. Mother, I feel you. Mother, I know you.

Mother, I see you. Mother, I feel you. Mother, I know you.


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Danielle Dulsky

Danielle Dulsky

Danielle Dulsky is a heathen visionary, Aquarian mischief-maker, and word-witch. Author of 'Seasons of Moon and Flame: The Wild Dreamer’s Epic Journey of Becoming', 'The Holy Wild: A Heathen Bible for the Untamed Woman' and 'Woman Most Wild' (New World Library 2020, 2018, 2017), Danielle teaches internationally and has facilitated embodiment trainings, wild circles, communal spell-work, and seasonal rituals since 2007. She is the founder of The Hag School and the lead teacher for the school’s Flame-Tender Facilitator Training and online coven, The Hag Ways Collective, an E-RYT 500 and YACEP, a Fire-Keeper for Ord Brighideach, and a dedicant to Irish-Celtic spirituality. She believes in the power of wild collectives and sudden circles of curious dreamers, cunning witches, and rebellious artists as well as the importance of ancestral healing, embodiment, and animism in fracturing the longstanding systems supporting environmental unconsciousness and social injustice. Parent to two beloved wildings and partner to a potter, Danielle fills her world with nature, family, art-making, poetry, and intentional awe.
Danielle Dulsky