Paganistan: Notes from the Secret Commonwealth

In Which One Midwest Man-in-Black Confers, Converses & Otherwise Hob-Nobs with his Fellow Hob-Men (& -Women) Concerning the Sundry Ways of the Famed but Ill-Starred Tribe of Witches.

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A Good Year for Trolls

Gods, the trolls are bad this year.

Been down to the mall lately?


Felt unaccountably grouchy or angry?


Trolls hate light, and fear it. They come out when it gets dark. For obvious reasons, Yule always brings them out.

On Troll Night—the thirteenth before Mother Night—you can hang out the troll-cross, set out offerings at the doorstep, and hammer-sign the door: Here, and no farther.

But, really, at this season keeping them at bay is the best one can hope for. Only Thunder and Sun can make the trolls go away for good.

And this year they're particularly bad.

Anishinabe activist Winona Laduke writes about “Wendigo Politics”: the crushing, ravenous politics of those who care only for themselves.

In Anishinabe lore, a wendigo is a cannibalistic monster that haunts winter nights: i.e. a troll.

"Troll Politics." Shudder.

And where does such a destructive politic come from?

Alas, the sad fact is that, long ago, trolls kidnapped human women and took them to wife. Woe worth us, their offspring continue to plague us to this day.

Check out the Oval Office, if you don't believe me.

If that's not the son of a troll, I've never seen one.


Photo: Troll Cross






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Poet, scholar and storyteller Steven Posch was raised in the hardwood forests of western Pennsylvania by white-tailed deer. (That's the story, anyway.) He emigrated to Paganistan in 1979 and by sheer dint of personality has become one of Lake Country's foremost men-in-black. He is current keeper of the Minnesota Ooser.


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