Sunday, September 09, 2012

Of Poppets and Sea Glass

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," coming to you in chapters today:


Earlier in this epic year, I began collecting beach glass in earnest. Before 2012, I was a casual beachcomber, but lately I've been trying to bond with the dark Atlantic. Sea glass seemed to be a good way to do it, because it's very special: the sharp edges have been worn dull, and the glass is frosted -- consequence of rolling around in the surf for who knows how long.

I dredged up some old jars from the ancestral lands in Appalachia and began a very odd project: filling glass jars from the mountains with sea glass from the beach. There's a hedge-witchiness to this that appeals to me.

Then I discovered something. The jars were filling up (well, not the "good stuff" jar, but the others). What would I do when I had the jars filled? Would I still go? What would be the point? Greed to have more and more sea glass? Not how I roll.
Turns out there's an artist in Philadelphia named Isaiah Zagar. He does immense mosaics using discarded glass and mirrors. If you visit Philly and walk along South Street, you will see Isaiah's work both large and small, including his amazing, faerie-friendly, bored-god-approved artistic playground, the Magic Gardens.

EXHIBIT A: THE MAGIC GARDENS, PHILADELPHIA (Photos don't do it justice.)

I spoke to Isaiah's staff, and they spoke to him and the upshot is that most of my beach glass will go into mosaics in Philadelphia! I took in a big bag on Saturday. Spare and I walked down to the Magic Gardens and handed it over. If he likes it, I'll give him more.

I am living the Pagan Purpose-Driven Life.


You three readers of mine have been very generous helping me out with Decibel the Parrot's astronomical bird bills since she hurt her wing earlier in the summer. The good news is that, so long as she doesn't peck at it, her "ouch" is mending nicely. She's in a parrot collar that we call the "cone of shame." (I posted a picture a week or so ago.)

In August I went to a Pagan Pride event in central Jersey, and there I met the amazing and fabulous Mrs.B. She has a blog on where she writes about raising children by good Pagan principles.

On the day of the Pride event, Mrs. B gave a talk about poppets. Maybe you've heard the word, but the long and short is that the idea of sticking pins in a doll in hopes of hurting someone from afar is mostly just a stupid thing made up for t.v. On the other hand, people have been using poppets for centuries. Poppets are small dolls filled with stuffing and herbs. They can be decorated in any way. If you have a poppet, it will hold some of your energy within it and provide you with healing, strength, and safety when you need it.

Mrs. B makes and sells poppets, so I commissioned one for Decibel. It arrived over the weekend and is now near, but not too near, Decibel's cage.

I'll let Mrs. B describe this magickal dolly:

"This custom made Voodude (tm) was created for healing and for added protection. It's stuffed with poly fil stuffing and contains herbs of healing, including lavender, plantain, eucalyptus, bay, and comfrey.

"The wings have been stitched with the following runes: Ken (healing), Thorn (protection), Ur (protection, health, and strength), and Rad (safety during traveling).

"This poppet has also been infused with Reiki healing and serves as a proxy for distant Reiki healings."

Mrs. B has never met Decibel, but nonetheless the poppet is a ringer for the bird. It's like having two Decibels, only one of them doesn't mouth off all the time.


If you want a poppet, or an herbal infusion for an ailment, you should visit Mrs. B's store. And for those of you who haven't gotten to meet her in person, let me just say that Mrs. B is as wonderful as her blog would lead you to believe!

Here's the link to her store:

Catch you next time on the Big, Broad, Flexible Portal of the Bored Gods!


Mrs.B. said...

It was such a pleasure to meet you, Anne! I'm so glad your poppet got to you safely! ((Hugs))

pyrplewitch said...

I can second that Mrs. B and her poppets are wonderful!

Debra She Who Seeks said...

The Decibel poppet is SO adorable! I hope its healing powers help Decibel get back to full health. And how wonderful that the beach glass which comes to you will end up in the Magic Garden delighting scads of people.

Lois said...

That is so cool!

Lori F - MN said...

careful, there's almost too much cool in this entry LOL.
I love the idea that you can pass on the beach glass to an artist so others can enjoy it AND that Decible has a 'friend' to keep him company and help him heal.



what a great idea..a poppet..I know it's a failing of mine, but when I think of fairies, pagans, witches, etc. the state of New Jersey does not pop into my brain..sad.

Wizardess said...

So cool, both parts A & B. Will add Mrs. B's blog back to my listy in my sidebar. Thanks!

jelly andrews said...

Wow! This is really cute. I love this idea. Thank you so much for sharing it.

jelly andrews said...

Cool idea! This seems great. I am glad you shared this one. Thanks a lot for sharing.