Priestess of the Holy Obscene, I Applaud You.


Come to the water with me, wild one! Bear witness to my Baptism by Nectar, and I promise you will never be the same!

I’ve filled a bejeweled pitcher with the lush and tender guts of one thousand honeysuckle flowers, and I’ve left behind the names I was given and the dreams that died in the cocoon long before they were born. I am initiating myself in the name of erotic righteousness.

I am spitting on those who think me vulgar and shameful, and I am pouring slow-running, thick syrup on those thirsty, cob-webbed places that have gone unlicked for far too long.

I’ve plenty of juice for you, too, my love. Let’s be epic and get some sunlight on our shadowy parts. Let’s be mermaid-selkies and spiral -dance underwater bare-breasted and with more grace than the suit-and-ties could handle. Let’s do things that make the demure madonnas blush, and let them call us wicked Witches who have made a blasphemous covenant with a sly, underwater sea demon.

I’m through with the monotonous, heady chants and sterile, still-bodied ceremonies! My house is dark and missing an ocean, and I’m craving salt-crusted skin and simple ritual. I’ve burned my last candle, and I’ve prayed my last spell. These are the longer days when spirits are quiet, and my will is so strong it could set fire to the iciest heart.

I am the whole of Summer embodied in the freckled, soft skin of a wild woman, and I’ve got a fire raging in my pelvic bowl that will not be dowsed by any insult or trickery.

Just for today, let’s be Priestesses of the Holy Obscene. I’ve got some tales to tell that are too good to keep secret; let’s write of our debauchery in a new scripture where the verses speak of hard-nippled freedom and hedonistic revelry.

Our parables will be recited by snickering, paper-skinned grandmothers after the little ones are in bed, and our words will be so luscious and vibrant they will make the blindly faithful and always pious question their loyalty to their vengeful gods.

This is my Baptism by Nectar, and you are cordially invited; there’s no other face I’d rather see when I blink my eyes through the sticky flower essence as it cleanses away my too-rigid, outmoded ideas about what liberation looks like. I’m not who I was in the Winter, wise Sister, and nor are you.

Let’s take to the frigid water as thick-skinned sirens who are being reborn under the late Spring sun, and let’s remember how to be playful, joyous Maidens who splash and shriek without fear of waking the tamed, bitter ones.

Leave your wand and your crystals, love; you won’t need them where we’re going. Forgive me, but today our bodies are the spell and the water is the altar. We are the living Craft, and we answer to no one claiming a higher holiness.

Hold my hand, and stand in the shallows with me, woman. Tilt your head sunward and hold your breath. With this sweet succulence, you are reborn anew. This is still your year, Witch, and I am in love with your magick and mystery. Dive beneath these grey-green waters now, and resurface as a wilder version of yourself.

Tell me a dirty joke then, lest we take ourselves too seriously, and let’s search for shells until midnight comes and the moon beckons us to sleep where night-visions of the pleasure-filled yet-to-come abound behind our eyelids.

Come closer, love. I want to hear your heartbeat. Thank you for spending this watery holiday with me. I’m not sure what came over me, but I grow so weary of dry land when the days grow warmer. Some part of my soul, the better part I think, remembers how to live underwater, beneath the too-fast surface of the topside world, but I don’t always like venturing into my depths alone.

You are the perfect sea-deep companion, Witch-Lover, and I am blessed to know you no matter the season. Tomorrow, we shall return to our workaday lives and speak of grand plans, budgets, and activism, but, for now, I am reveling in the afterglow of our self-designed, so-sweet, so-simple ceremony.

Fellow Priestess of the Holy Obscene, I applaud you, and I hope I haven’t taken up too much of your time. I fear you might the think the day wasted, but what’s a few steamy hours spent in sacred swimming within a whole life of being land-bound? What’s one day lost in the name of whole-body, whole-spirit renewal?

I remember who I am now, thanks to you, and I can return to my bed in the morning with suppler skin and wet lips. We don’t need to tell anyone either. Witches have always had secrets, after all. Just raise a brow and smirk in my direction, and I’ll know you’re remembering our day spent wild, our twin baptisms, and our noon-to-midnight journey from parched to perfect.


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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