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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Making Creativity a Priority

 Coyote, Close-up Portrait (Photos Prints Puzzles Framed Posters Canvas  Cards...) #20582757

No creative person is “on” all the time.

That's why I'm sitting here at five in the morning writing this.

I'm just coming off of a weekend spent (virtually) at the 2022 Current Pagan Studies conference, for which this year's theme was “Visions of Imagination and Creativity.” There's nothing quite like spending a couple of days hearing a bunch of smart, creative people sharing thoughts on the nature of creativity and our relationship with it, to get one thinking about one's own.

Here's mine: when I'm “on”, I run with it.

I have a certain superstition that, in the course of any given life, there's X amount of creativity given to each of us. You can use it or not, as you choose. But—like everything else—there's a limit to how much you get. Say “no” to creativity, and it may not be back.

I'm not entirely sure that I actually do believe this. For one thing, my experience has been that creativity builds on creativity: that, like an athlete, the more you exercise a particular muscle, the more performance you'll be able to get out of it in the future. But, at very least, I find that operating on this belief—that there's a limited amount of inspiration available to me in this lifetime—seems to be the best way to get the most out of my creative faculties.

I lay down the other afternoon to get some much-needed sleep. Drifting off, I found myself thinking of a couple of stories that I'd written years ago, but since lost: “Why Hare Has Forward Testicles” and “How Coyote F*cked the Chief's Son (and Got Away With It).”

(Unlike virtually any other male animal on the planet, buck hares wear their testicles in front of their penises rather than behind them. Hey, that's worth a story. And as for the other: well, what's more fun than a good, raunchy Coyote story, especially one with lots of hot, consensual gay sex?)

Laying there, wanting to sleep, I knew that I could write both of those stories again. I could write them now. Tomorrow, maybe not, but now, yes.

So I dragged my scrawny ass out of bed and turned on the computer. Never did get the nap, but I do now have two very amusing stories that for a long time I'd thought were gone forever.

So: There's Hare laying around one day, drunk and passed out as usual, with his butt hanging out....




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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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