—Leafshimmer, Midsummer 2011
Once in a violet moon (so to speak), someone will ask why my line of the Faery Tradition is known as the Mutant Bloodrose line. I was trained originally by Gabriel Carrillo, Founder of the Bloodrose School of Witchcraft, from which many of the curriculum-based methods of teaching Faery derive. When Gabriel was teaching us, he preferred to speak of our work as “the Faery Cauldron.” It was said by Taliesin in a poem that the two words that never came forth from the Great Cauldron of Cerridwen were “be still,” so in modern terms the use of the concept of constant mutation is apt. But Mutant really reflects lines that derive from my Oathmother, Eldri Littlewolf. I’m sure she has her own reasons for her choice of the word. One memory that comes to me is that a couple of times she has pointed out to me that Witches, when they are in their power and paying attention, see patterns. It’s a significant part of what we do. I think of a mutation as established in scientific discourse as a naturalist identifying a pattern, perhaps one that cuts against the grain. Evolution has turned out to be a lot more complicated than we originally thought (another topic about which Eldri has spoken to me more than once), and the role of “freaks,” “monsters” and “deviants” has turned out to be more important than anyone ever guessed. I really relate to that–as we used to say when I was a child, I dig it.
When I hear the word Mutant, I don’t think of the X-Men or anything like that. I think of a Jon Pertwee Dr Who story I first saw sometime around 1974. It was called “The Mutants,” and the role played by the title characters involved a rather spectacular revelation I prefer not to give away. Later on when I read about Teilhard’s theories regarding human spiritual evolution, I thought of the imagery of “The Mutants,” even though it was a low-budget British science fiction serial (which originally hardly anyone I knew had ever heard of). For me, these stories and films played the same role as the myths and sacred dramas did for the citizens of ancient Athens. They were fantastic tales that had a magical resonance and revealed some hidden truths through the language of symbol and play.
The Bloodrose, of whose thorns Victor Anderson wrote with such searing poetic insight in his verses, is such a rich image, booming like a thunderclap through the firmament of my mind. The image of an unfolding spiral rose whose swirls bring forth constant unfolding of Mystery and epiphany holds such wonder, and sums up for me what makes the Craft such a treasure of spiritual and magical exploration. That is why I cherish the image of the Mutant Bloodrose, and why I am very proud that I am of this line. Midsummer Blessings to all who read my words.