And school’s out early and soon we’ll be learning that the lesson today is how to die. Bob Geldof Dying is something we all face, whether we think about it or not. For most of my life, if I thought about it, it was to find ways to avoid it. I turned 58 years old […]
Poe and The Raven’s lost Lenore? One of the last photos of Edgar Allan Poe and Sarah Elmira Royster Shelton, about the same time. I spent much of the past eighteen months living with Edgar Allan Poe. I can’t say I knew the man when I first started. I had some travel experiences with him, […]
Haunted Plymouth has been known as America’s hometown over more than four centuries, and its history stretches back even further than that. Ghosts and hauntings seem to attach themselves to locations over time … houses, buildings of all sorts, even woods and entire towns. Plymouth has seen its share of real life horror stories, and […]
Monkshood is one of the more deadly plants in the witch’s garden. It was also one of the plants closely associated with the witch’s flying ointment. A look at this diabolical botanical, and how it differs from its cousin, the legendary wolfsbane.
What is Halloween? A look at Halloween traditions of the past What is Halloween and why the focus on the dead? It’s a boon to necromancers, the day when the dead are most inclined to rise up and join us in the world. Perhaps all it takes is a little pull from this side, and […]
DAME ALICE KYTELER was the culprit in the first successful witch trial in Ireland, if you can consider having an unfortunate woman burned at the stake successful. Alice however didn’t burn. She escaped the flames, leaving her maid servant Petronella de Meath to become the first Irish victim of the witch hunts. A wildcat of […]
And so we find Edgar Allan Poe in Baltimore. Those who look to unravel the mystery of how Poe died here are chasing windmills or chasing a buck. There’s a good reason we’ll never know the truth about Poe in Baltimore on his fateful last visit. It’s none of our business. Dying is a private […]
It’s a tantalizing legend, that the building that now houses Il Buco in New York City was the macabre inspiration in Poe’s life for the setting of The Cask of Amontillado. The places Poe touched in Manhattan and the Bronx can still be found, though in most cases the surroundings are unrecognizable from his day. So […]
A month ago I stood atop a long barrow on White Horse Hill, with the grass covered chalk walls of Uffington Castle behind me, the galloping Uffington White Horse below me, and pondered a question for which there is no answer. What makes a landscape sacred? Is sacred the right word? Mystic perhaps. What makes […]
The chambered tombs and long barrows of Britain have long tickled the imagination, and perhaps none more so than Wayland’s Smithy. Perhaps it’s the stand of beech trees enclosing it which makes it feel more intimate, more hushed. Unlike West Kennet Long Barrow near Avebury, sitting exposed to the wind and the rain, high on […]
Cowslip is a witch’s garden plant which s traditionally found by foraging. Know for its connection to May Day, divination and of course faeries, it’s been celebrated in folklore and by Shakespeare, for its connection to love.
Looking at spring in the witch’s garden, planning the coming year and adapting spaces to changing plans. A look at what survived the winter, what seems to be spreading and what didn’t survive the freeze.