Today I Hired an Editor

Created for my acting workshop

© Janus Blume

January 30, 2020

In the interest of transparency, I don’t know whether this is a monologue or a commercial, but it’s Thursday, and I need something to read in class tonight. I have to plough through my books or Monologue Blogger to search for something that works for a woman of my advanced age, or write something original. Things in my life are pretty exciting right now, so here’s some insider information about being Janus on January 30, 2020.

I had to stop in the middle of my morning prayers this morning, because my friend texted me back when I was between the fires in Australia and protection for the Amazon rainforest. Well, obviously, I couldn’t wait until I was done to look at her message, because I had to see if she liked my latest poem and the image of Seraphina, the black angel who came to me in the form of a cat with green eyes to help me market my introductory book on Witchcraft.

Original painting by Steph Sparks

Oh, it doesn’t always feel like that. It feels like a struggle sometimes. Sometimes I have to write when I want to nap and send money to a sister Witch and writer in Portland when I’d love to go to the mall and punch up my wardrobe instead, but still…nd evenings, and longed to be a full-time priestess. Now I’m retired from the workaday world, and it’s my time to shine, to live my dream. vital relationship, one that I need to maintain.

I’ve got to get this book on the market, and start making some money! I just sent $500 to a favorite poet (If you saw my one-woman show, she wrote the poem I recited, “Beneath the Sweater and the Skin”) as a deposit for her services as an editor. I need to get my entire manuscript plus the rest of the money to her by May 1. Our letter of agreement says that she will take my writing to the next level, so it’s worth it.

I need to get my crowdfunding site posted to be able to pay her, get my book published when she’s done, and advertise it on social media. Right now, I can’t afford to shop for clothes or get my hair styled. And forget retail therapy. It’s killing me!

I could save a couple of hundred dollars a month by not getting my nails done, but you have to have some things in order to live. Food, water, air, and for me, a bio gel manicure twice a month along with a neck and shoulder massage and either facial waxing or a pedicure on alternate visits. Besides, my nail technician and I are designing a sacred massage bracelet for her, so it’s a clearly a vital relationship, one that I need to maintain.

See, I’ve earned this. I’ve worked for my entire adult life from the age of nineteen until I was 68. Well, except for the time I took off to be a stay-at-home mom when my kids were little. From 2001 to 2012 I taught and initiated new Witches weekends and evenings, and longed to be a full-time priestess. Now I’m retired from the workday world, and it’s my time to shine, to live my dream.

Okay, I know this whole thing is my ego talking, and it’s antithetical to what I stand for, but then that’s part of it, too. See, the ability to accept paradox is one of the gatekeepers to spiritual prowess. I love being a Pagan because it’s okay to be straight up human with all of my foibles. There’s no need for pretense, guilt, or groveling. I’m just me, exactly the way I am. It feels like the song “Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream, merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream.”

Oh, it doesn’t always feel like that. It feels like a struggle sometimes. Sometimes I have to write when I want to nap, and send money to a sister Witch and writer in Portland when I’d love to go to the mall and punch up my wardrobe instead, but still…

Getting to be a Witch is a lucky thing! But wait, there’s more! I also get to be a part of a syncretic faith from Brazil. It incorporates Amazonian shamanism, Kardakian spiritism, folk Catholicism, and the uniquely Brazilian African diaspora tradition, Umbanda. I thought a Wiccan ritual circle was the most fun a religion could be, but I didn’t know what rapture was.

I’ve been to Burning Man, flown first class, and been to the beach in Hawaii. They were all entirely enjoyable, and I would love to enjoy them again. I say this to set the stage for what I’m going to say next. The very best experience of my life is my church. The most wonderful part is this: I get to be part of a Christian tradition that still lets me be a Witch and welcomes messages of light and love regardless of label.

My high priestess used to paraphrase Alan Watts and say, “The purpose of religion isn’t to make you good. That’s the purpose of ethics. The purpose of religion is to make you high.” In between prayers and texts and running to the bank and the post office today, a poem came to me. I’d like to share it with you now. It’s called:

Don’t Forgive, Thank

(C) Janus L. Blume

January 30, 2020

We are children of the volcano,

The mountain,

The sea,

Seeded by the sun,

Equatorial summer,

And Polar cold,

Sisters and brothers of Jesus.

Descended from Eve?

Or was it Lilith?

We nourish painful memories

As if they were beloved children.

They eat our resentments,

Growing into giants,

Dwarfing our minds,

Strangling our hearts.

We wander the earth

As ghostly amnesiacs,


We are players

On the stage of destiny

In a scripted improv

With no beginning.

According to Scandinavian cosmology,

Act one won’t end

Until the wolf, Frenrir,

Devours the gods

At ragnarok.

Your personal tragedies are small

Compared to ragnarok.

Let them shrink

To their actual size,

And use them.

They come from teachers.

And are:

Destroyers of illusion

Character builders,

Source material.

And so, you see,

You have no one to forgive

In this Lila,

This play of the gods.

Every slight, every snub, every personal injury,

Is a brushstroke adding texture and beauty.

Embrace your role

With gusto and complete abandon.

Be whomever you want.

Do you want to star

In a rom-com

Running through the airport

To stop your beloved

From boarding the plane

To Zanzibar?

How about an adventure

Where you’re a gladiator,

And you find the Christ within,

And free the other slaves?

Or be the Buddha, or Mary Magdalene.

As for me,

I want to be a healer,

A woman of wisdom,

A Witch who commands lightning.

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