I’m Kait. I’m a green witch in my late 20s who currently lives in Alabama. I live with chronic mental & physical illnesses that cannot be cured by herbs or potions – but I believe in energy & I believe magic is all around us. I also believe in modern medicine because it keeps me alive – though I wish it were more holistic. I believe this world is made of magic & I believe it is conspiring on my & your behalf – despite its obsticles. I’m an artist, a writer, a wife, a nester, a lover of design & beauty & books & this magical but sometimes crushing & obliterating experience of being a human in this world. I am a feminist. I am a survivor of dark things. I am trying to learn a new way of being, to grow, to thrive. This blog is my field notes, my journal – beginning with the pull I felt & continue to feel towards spirituality & witchcraft, to my discovery of my particular path of green witchcraft, to what comes next.
Where does “Whatever Returns” come from?
The name of this journal, Whatever Returns, comes from a poem titled “The Wild Iris” by Louise Gluck, one of my favorite poets. I actually pulled the name from the poem when I was so new to witchcraft that I didn’t even know what a “green witch” was yet – I assumed they were probably witches who were obsessed with working with herbal medicine? But I knew I wanted to write a blog about my journey with witchcraft – both for my own documentation (with an eye on growth) & in a hopeful attempt to connect with other magical folks. Now that I’ve found a little more footing & have a (slightly) clearer view of my path, it feels like it was predestined for me to fall in love with the ideas & practices of green witchcraft after having chosen the name for this space from this poem some time before even learning what a green witch is. Here is the poem it is pulled from:
At the end of my suffering
there was a door.
Hear me out: that which you call death
Overhead, noises, branches of the pine shifting.
Then nothing. The weak sun
flickered over the dry surface.
It is terrible to survive
buried in the dark earth.
Then it was over: that which you fear, being
a soul and unable
to speak, ending abruptly, the stiff earth
bending a little. And what I took to be
birds darting in low shrubs.
You who do not remember
passage from the other world
I tell you I could speak again: whatever
returns from oblivion returns
to find a voice:
from the center of my life came
a great fountain, deep blue
shadows on azure seawater.
I have identified with this poem for a long time. I feel I have died many deaths during my life – not literally, but in the figurative way many of us are demolished by circumstance at one time or another & forced to rise up again, changed but still ourselves. I feel I have been consciousness buried in the dark earth. Witchcraft is helping me to find a way forward in my life – something bigger than myself to have faith in that isn’t steeped in guilt & patriarchy but empowerment & wholeness. I feel it is helping me not so much to find my voice, I have been writing for as long as I can remember, but teaching me new & better ways of using it. Frankly, I feel green witchcraft is teaching me a better way of being a person. That is not to say it is easy to change, but that this is the most holistic way I have found so far.