Russia, Polina and a Country Tune

The other week, a woman by the name of Polina wrote the following on my FaceBook page.  I’m posting it here not so that you can read how grand I am.  Truly, it shows us the determination of one young woman, Polina, in a far off country, who took an idea and ran with it.  May she have many blessings!  Here is her letter:
Dear Silver Ravenwolf,
I’m writing to you from far-away Russia. My name is Polina and I’m 25 years old. Something about 13 years ago, on a mysterious occasion, I came across your book in the Moscow subway.  It was TeenWitch: Wicca for a New Generation, and it has changed my whole life from many perspectives. Honestly, I was growing up with it in my hands. Even these days I have it on my bookshelf and I take it when I need some inspiration or when nostalgia comes up. You’ve opened up Wicca to me, the new brave world where a little girl from a poor family can influence her own life and hold it firm in her hands without being angry on everybody around for bad luck and sad fortune. I can’t imagine what my life could look like if I hadn’t discovered Wicca, but luckily I did it with you help! I was living in a poor family, and very often the poor are angry and envious with the more successful because they think they simply can not change their lives. … And I was alike. I did not have any special talents, my future plans seemed dark and vogue and I used to think even then that my life would not be a bed of roses. Those days I was just 12. I was fond of telling lies, being capricious and shifting the blame on others.
With Wicca, everything changed. Of course, it was not a one night miracle, but by gradual investigating Wicca and facing myself to the Goddess I was changing day by day. I was learning to be honest with my own self and other people, to bear responsibility for all my actions, both magickal and not. I realized how important it is to explore the world every single moment because each grain of knowledge, inspiration and hope, which life gives you, can turn into good. My living became a blessing. Each day was full of even more colors and hopes. I discovered that neither my social origin, nor life circumstances, nor education and place of living – nothing is able to prevent me from being happy and helping people around. The years rolled by and I read many other books about Wicca, but this one – my very first book – remains something dear and special. I hope my little daughter will read it one day. As for today, I am a Wiccan activist in Russia. Namely I’m a co-founder and active member of the Russian Wiccan Alliance, an activist of Moscow House of Wiccans and of Pagan Federation International Russia. A hand maker, an event-coordinator and, I’d like to believe, an inspirer of many Wiccans across Russia. Today my life is full of wonderful colors, Magick, adventures, events and plans. And all these things were revealed to me one May day almost 13 years ago.
I am very grateful to you for this book – everything of the above has happened because of you!
Best Regard, ParNada

Polina’s letter inspired me.  She reminded me that we have to keep going, keep trying, keep becoming.   Several years ago, when I did the A&E Biography interview, they asked me what my goal was in the world of magick.  At the time, I said, “I would really like to put together a course that teaches Pow-Wow (Braucherei/Whisper Magick).  Every time I thought I would settle down to work on it — life happened.  Good things like marriages of children, grandchildren, a new home…and tough things — dealing with the home care of an elderly parent, his sickness, and his eventual passing.

Last night, my husband took me out to dinner.  It was a pleasant evening, and as we returned home, I drank in the twilight.  The soft glow of the landscape.  The smooth aromas of the coming summer night.  The early fireflies twinkling against the inky blackness of the woods beyond the field.  I had Polina’s letter on my mind as I relaxed and enjoyed the car ride.

A song came on the radio.  I don’t know the name of the guy who sings it.  I have no idea of the name of the song.  But, I loved the refrain that basically says something like — when hell breaks loose, keep on rolling.

That sort of sums up my past five years.  And ya know?  He’s right.

My Grandmother Krow (a Capricorn) always said, “Don’t give up, and don’t give in.”  I’ve thought about her a lot these past five years.  As a child, she was always there for me with her West Virginia drawl common sense, straight up talk, and faith that you could always find a way.  My Etsy shop is named after her:  CrowCrossroads, and because of her influence in my life, I decided to get off my duff and put together that course.

The Granny Magick course is the first time I have offered on-line training.  It is a magickal blend of Braucherei techniques and Granny enchantment.  The students learn whisper magick, and how to make magick out of nothing.  A very DIY approach that celebrates the creativity of the student.  To go with the course, I developed a private blog for the students.  That way, they can work through the lessons at their own pace, and still have on-line support from myself and the other students.  Heading into the second month, we’re doing well.  I’ve also been working on candles, oils, and formulas that match the training — which has been exciting and fulfilling.  Every day my house brims with brewing magick.

In my spare time, I’ve been working on my own counted cross-stitch designs and I’m teaching myself to quilt.  I have a new book in the works, and things are rolling along.  For me?  It’s like going home where the air is fresh, the love is grand, and the days always bring joy.

Keep on rolling, Polina — I’m right there with ya.


Peace with the Gods
Peace with Nature
Peace within.


22 thoughts on “Russia, Polina and a Country Tune”

  1. I am sitting here trying to thing of something poignant to say, however the only word that is coming to mind is “Beautiful.” Like Polina, Teen Witch was the very first book on Wicca I ever read. I felt like it finally opened a dirty mirror in my mind was Finally wiped cam lean, and I could see who I had always been. These days I don’t consider myself Wiccan, as much as I see myself as “Spiritual”. However I am turning 30 on Wednesday, and your words and wisdoms have always helped me through trying times, and encouraged me to be the strongest woman I can be, and I truly look forward to reading and learning from you in the years to come.

  2. Beautiful and inspiring! I am a 52 year old crone, and my first magical book was: To Light a Sacred Flame. It’s been over 20 years and the flame is still going strong!

  3. Your writing and your teaching have also had very profound effects on my life. Many transformations have come through in my life from the magick in your books and the optimism and generoisty of your spirit. Although right now I am unable to participate in your Granny online course, I know that I’ll be able to take your class at some later date. Weirdly coincidental…I went to a Russian shaman some years ago who didn’t understand why I had not found a teacher yet, but he promised that when the time was right, SHE would appear.
    Well, you appear in my inbox quite regularly! I have faith the time will be right soon.

  4. Wow. What a lovely story. It’s a brilliant reminder of how we influence each other.
    On a side note, I keep going to Etsy and looking at those class installments and if there’s one thing I’ve learned over the last few months, it’s that I don’t have the time that I think I do so on payday I’m picking up lesson one.

  5. That was wonderful to read and I think also a very good reminder what it all is about. Go her for being brave and taking the steps – and walking them to this day onwards! 🙂
    And it brings a bit of nostalgia to me as well – remembering the very first two books I read and how far they’ve brought me to this day. Though they weren’t by you 🙂 – back then they didn’t have many pagan books translated into German and I read German mainly then, whereas now I read English as well. they were there at the right place at the right time and so was I and for that I will be forever thankful!

    1. You are so right — they were in the right place at the right time, and you took it and ran with it — sometimes we overlook opportunity when it is staring us right in the face. Thank you for posting this!

  6. I first read teen witch when I was 8 or 9 years old. It was the first book on wicca I had read and I have been wiccan ever since then. Your work and the work of Scott Cunning ham has help mold me even more into the person I am today. Thank you.

  7. Oh isn’t it a wonderful feeling when you see someone happy, makes me smile over and over again 😀

  8. I Too Have Been Inspire By Your Book Years Ago..
    Your Magic Has Help Me Become A Man…
    With Magic …
    Maktub !

  9. Your book to ride a Silver Broom Stick was the first book I read, and I immediately fell for the down to earth talk. The fact that you have 4 kids and worked & ran a group. I had no clue as to what you looked like. Yeah… I know your picture was on the back (but for some reason never saw it). When I had the opportunity to met you. I was shocked as too how tiny you were. I then fell even harder with how truly amazing a person you are & I grabbed up every book I could that you wrote. No. I’m not a stalker, but you really are an inspiration. I have since met your family & you and my view of you & the books haven’t swayed.
    A true Woman/ Witch /Healer. I do look forward to your lectures & teachings.
    Keep being amazing! Even through the difficult times.

  10. I too remember the days of my youth when your books inspired me to become something more than I was. To Ride a Silver Broomstick was the first. Later I read Teen Witch, which helped me learn to open up to my dad and show him that Wicca was not “just a phase” for me. It is my life, and your writing has helped me for the past nearly 17 years now. I am glad you were inspired to write and do the other things you have done for Wicca and Spirituality through the years because you have helped so many in the process. Many thanks!

  11. I, too, have been inspired by your writing! I always recommend, To Ride a Silver Broomstick, and have given many copies away. You kept me sane during my house fire where my family and I lost everything but our lives. I bought each of my children Teen Witch when they turned 13. Thank you~

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