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 Handful of Earth

 How a handful of soil holds more than 50 billion life forms | Financial  Times

 Last Rites


The graveside service over, people are beginning to turn back to the cars. But there's one more rite to be observed here today.

This is, after all, my mother, and I her firstborn child.

I scoop up a handful of earth from a new grave nearby, and place it on the lid of the coffin. Against the polished wood, the little mound of sandy soil manages to look both shocking, and inevitable.

This is rite as articulate action: symbolism that no one needs to have explained.

Standing at the coffin's foot, I pronounce the traditional words.

Earth be warm for you, my mother.




Loretta C. Posch

July 28, 1929 - June 15, 2023

Memory Eternal





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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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