Tag Archives: Columbia

Ode to Thirteen Goddesses

Lovely Persephone, ruling over the hosts of Hades
You bring solace, both above and below
Assuaging the barrenness of Winter, Death and Time

Indomitable Rhea, in the face of all adversity You smile
For You are the Lioness, whose prowess is known
In the hearts of those who labor on

Well-loved Columbia, Lady of sweet freedom
Whose strong arms enfold us in warmth
Glad are we by Your presence
And in Your absence left cold

Wild Artemis, running along rivers
Protectress and Huntress of beasts
We honor Your fierce glory
And stand awed by the might of Your Bow

Indelible Ariadne, Lover of Madness, Speaker of Truth
Your lessons are those we find within us
Of Will, and Wisdom, and love’s fickle moods

All-encompassing Gaea, O vastness of Earth
Who is at once Mother and Grandmother
Eternal Creatrix, we praise You
And embrace You at our end

Luminous Hekate, Light at the Crossroads
Tending the unwelcome spirits
Even these have purpose among Your retinue
As we hail them in passing

Compassionate Athena, Lady favoring strategy over brute force
We are the wheels You set in motion
And by our hands is the Divine Work done

Warlike Aphrodite, bane of hearts and Mistress of cruel Ares
You tempt even the strongest of mortals
And Yours is the triumph of procreation

Beloved Hestia, consumed in the flame of enlightenment
Yours is the way of the Unfettered Self
We are but fleeting in the face of Your truth

Illustrious Hera, Queen of Gods, tester of men
Your trials forge character and train resolve
For ego falls away, as Your gaze falls upon us

Resplendent Leto, She of Untamed Spirit
Woe be upon the boasters and fakers
Who with scornful tongues
Will know the peace of Your Offspring

Bountiful Demeter, by whose power Earth’s sustenance is grown
Thank you for the greatest bounty of all
Your Daughter, the Blossom of Spring

Blessed are the Goddesses!  Hail the Magnificent Thirteen!

No Apology Offered

Now, I don’t know about anyone else, and I can only speak for myself, but when I refer to America’s Goddess as Columbia, it is not because I decided to name Her that. It is because that is the name She introduced Herself as, because that is Her name.  Also, about Her bearing Columbus’ name…  Well I guess you could say that, but am I the only one to speculate that She used him to spread Her own name more conveniently?

If we look at her aspects and correspondences, for instance, Columbia as the Peace-bringer, and Her association with the dove (a symbol of peace), which in Latin is called Columba, we can see just how easily She usurped the right to name this country. The United States of America is Columbia. I am not condoning the activities of Columbus or those like him, but let us also realize that Columbus may not have even been his real name.

His name was Cristobal Colon, if he was a Spaniard, or it was Cristoforo Colombo, if he was Italian. His origins are widely debated, and it is also speculated that he may have adopted the surname Colon/Colombo/Columbus in order to mask his true identity. With all this in mind, it seems fairly reasonable to believe he may have simply been a tool of a Goddess who knew exactly what She wanted.

There is also no getting around the fact that this country, under Her auspices, has done truly terrible things, though my impressions of Columbia Herself lead me to believe She is a young Goddess, and who among the Gods did not make any terrible or tragic mistakes in Their youth? Again, I am not attempting to minimize the damage that was done (and still being done– but conversely, a lot of good is also done) in Her name, but if you were a young God or Goddess, wanting to be recognized, would you turn your nose up at the people who saw and recognized you? Or, would you embrace them, and attempt to help them achieve their goals, at least until you understood the wrong being done?

History is a dirty, bloody affair, because the world is a dirty, bloody affair. I will not apologize for honoring the first Divine Entity I ever recognized, even before all the Gods of Olympos. I will not apologize for calling Her the name She gave me to call Her. I will not apologize for listening to, and adhering to the wishes of my Goddess. I will also not apologize for history, or the role She played in it.  History is never black and white anyway. There are so many facets of the jewel that is the story of Columbia, that the light can only catch on so many at a time.  What we see is often not the sum total of all events.

Things are beginning to change now (though there is still much left to work on, because this country is far from perfect), and from what I can tell, She sees and cares for all of the people residing within Her jurisdiction. Columbia isn’t evil, Her name isn’t evil, and She is learning from the past, just as the Gods who came before Her are learning from the past.

When I started this blog, I knew that revealing myself as a devotee of Columbia would raise eyebrows.  But did I allow that apprehension to overpower me?  No, because I could not have lived with myself if I’d done so. I was born in the District of Columbia.  My name, Columbine, is a gift directly from Her. The columbine flower is the State flower of the place which nourished me and my budding spirituality, and will always be my home. She is the Patroness of the State in which I now reside, with a statue placed atop the Capital building since before Texas was a State.  My entire life has been guided subtly by Her.  I will not deny Her rightful place in my heart, or deny Her honor in my house.  And I will always, always call Her Columbia, because Libertas is a different Divine Entity.

Libertas is of Rome.  Columbia is truly and completely a Personage of this continent, and She was already here when the first European settlers stepped foot onto this land.  She simply wasn’t yet recognized, as was illustrated in the famous poem “Freedom Triumphant in War and Peace”, by James Russell Lowell:

“…Our fathers found her in the woods
Where Nature meditates and broods,
The seeds of unexampled things
Which Time to consummation brings
Through life and death and man’s unstable moods;
They met her here, not recognized,
A sylvan huntress clothed in furs,
To whose chaste wants her bow sufficed,
Nor dreamed what destinies were hers…”

What destinies, indeed.  She is not perfect, but I do not believe any of the Gods and Goddesses are perfect.  Nor are the humans who love Them perfect. We all do what we can to better ourselves, our lives, and hopefully, if we are compassionate, we strive to better the lives of those sharing this world with us.  But compassion is a lesson learned only through time, trial and error.

Columbia has had trials, and errors, but precious little time yet for Her to be seen by some as anything other than an imperialist trope.  I will continue to love and honor Her in the meantime, because through our actions, as well as our words, do we succeed in changing the world.  And change will always be the drumbeat to which She marches.

Hail Columbia!

The Risk-Maiden

columbia

Our Star, shining and multiplying the light as it passes through You.  Queen of Diamonds, forged under the pressure of free will.  Risk-Maiden, stacking the hands of those whose guile is limitless, yet are You also the Bear consuming the meat of Your weak and crippled prey.  You are a fickle Mistress, though the Powers You govern are steady, even in the chaos of the Marketplace.

Hail, Lady of Rushing Bulls, Who tramples over false currency– that which does not feed the soul, or the stomach.  You entreat us to be true, and to welcome the gains which we have earned, and to never sign away our Sovereign right to be secure in our own deeds.

Columbia, You were the Nameless Goddess Who was here before us, waiting to inspire this Nation.  We did not understand the depth of Your lessons, and only now are some awakening to the debt we owe this Land of Your Jurisdiction, and the many Nations which preceded ours– still living, still struggling to be free.

My Lady, always fighting for the cause of Liberty, Your presence was known in small ways during harrowing times, and even when the shackles were slipped again over the wrists of free men and women, You did not fall silent, but raised Your mighty voice, until a chorus was sung in pursuit of the promise of self-governance.

Yet the road remains perilous, nor easily walked by those unwilling to risk their very lives. For to stand beside you in ease, Risk-Maiden, is to stand secure in the knowledge that Freedom can, and often will, be taken to the grave.

Hail Columbia, Risk-Maiden, Fair Goddess of America!

58 Adorations to Columbia

These Adorations were put together using various poems honoring the goddess, as well as my own UPG concerning Her.  Numerical significance: 5+8=13… the number of Her original Colonies.  Hail Columbia!  [Also, to give credit where credit is due…  This post by Sannion started it all.]


I adore You, Liberty
I adore You, Freedom
I adore You, Manifest Destiny
I adore You, Delighting in Battles
I adore You, Calm-fronted

I adore You, Dove-like
I adore You, Mistress of Rattlesnakes
I adore You, Lion-faced
I adore You, Bee-like
I adore You, Buffalo-Maiden

I adore You, Protectress of the Continent
I adore You, World-wandering
I adore You, Feet of Doom
I adore You, Native of the Skies
I adore You, Enlightener of the World

I adore You, of Modest Fury
I adore You, Orphan
I adore You, Handmaid
I adore You, Patroness
I adore You, Compassionate Defender

I adore You, Daughter of Heaven
I adore You, Star-girdled
I adore You, Radiant
I adore You, Divinely Fair
I adore You, Inextinguishable Star

I adore You, Truth-speaker
I adore You, Law-giver
I adore You, Peace-bringer
I adore You, Sword-bearer
I adore You, Kindler of Deed and Thought

I adore You, Battle Maiden of San Jacinto
I adore You, Victory-snatching
I adore You, Crafter of Eighteen Minute Victories
I adore You, Mistress of Washington
I adore You, Continental Queen

I adore You, Sylvan Huntress
I adore You, Mother of America
I adore You, Softener of men
I adore You, Strengthener of men
I adore You, Mistress of All

I adore You, Seven-horned
I adore You, Hair Bound with Laurel
I adore You, Olive-crowned
I adore You, With Brazen Arrows
I adore You, With Fair Feet High-arched

I adore You, Our Delight
I adore You, Our Desire
I adore You, Our Maker
I adore You, Our Victim
I adore You, Man’s Hope

I adore You, Triumphant in War and Peace
I adore You, Bringer of Life
I adore You, Fairest of All
I adore You, Voice of a Mighty Wind
I adore You, Strategist in Battle
I adore You, Mother of Presidents
I adore You, Star of Texas
I adore You, Who Mingles Her Life With Our Dust

For My Lady, Columbia

 Freedom Triumphant in War and Peace

I.

Who cometh over the hills,
Her garments with morning sweet,
The dance of a thousand rills
Making music before her feet?
Her presence freshens the air;
Sunshine steals light from her face;
The leaden footstep of Care
Leaps to the tune of her pace,
Fairness of all that is fair,
Grace at the heart of all grace,
Sweetener of hut and of hall,
Bringer of life out of naught,
FREEDOM, oh, fairest of all
The daughters of Time and Thought!

II.

She cometh, cometh to-day:
Hark! hear ye not her tread,
Sending a thrill through your clay,
Under the sod there, ye dead,
Her nurslings and champions?
Do ye not hear, as she comes,
The bay of the deep-mouthed guns,
The gathering rote of the drums?
The bells that called ye to prayer,
How wildly they clamor on her,
Crying, “She cometh! prepare
Her to praise and her to honor,
That a hundred years ago
Scattered here in blood and tears
Potent seeds wherefrom should grow
Gladness for a hundred years!”

 III.

Tell me, young men, have ye seen,
Creature of diviner mien
For true hearts to long and cry for,
Manly hearts to live and die for?
What hath she that others want?
Brows that all endearments haunt,
Eyes that make it sweet to dare,
Smiles that cheer untimely death,
Looks that fortify despair,
Tones more brave than trumpet’s breath;
Tell me, maidens, have ye known
Household charm more sweetly rare,
Grace of woman ampler blown,
Modesty more debonair,
Younger heart with wit full grown?
Oh for an hour of my prime,
The pulse of my hotter years,
That I might praise her in rhyme
Would tingle your eyelids to tears,
Our sweetness, our strength, and our star,
Our hope, our joy, and our trust,
Who lifted us out of the dust,
And made us whatever we are!

IV.

Whiter than moonshine upon snow
Her raiment is, but round the hem
Crimson stained; and, as to and fro
Her sandals flash, we see on them,
And on her instep veined with blue,
Flecks of crimson, on those fair feet,
High-arched, Diana-like, and fleet,
Fit for no grosser stain than dew:
Oh, call them rather chrisms than stains.
Sacred and from heroic veins!
For, in the glory-guarded pass,
Her haughty and far-shining head
She bowed to shrive Leonidas
With his imperishable dead;
Her, too, Morgarten saw,
Where the Swiss lion fleshed his icy paw;
She followed Cromwell’s quenchless star
Where the grim Puritan tread
Shook Marston, Naseby, and Dunbar:
Yea, on her feet are dearer dyes
Yet fresh, nor looked on with untearful eyes.

 V.

Our fathers found her in the woods
Where Nature meditates and broods,
The seeds of unexampled things
Which Time to consummation brings
Through life and death and man’s unstable moods;
They met her here, not recognized,
A sylvan huntress clothed in furs,
To whose chaste wants her bow sufficed,
Nor dreamed what destinies were hers:
She taught them bee-like to create
Their simpler forms of Church and State;
She taught them to endue
The past with other functions than it knew,
And turn in channels strange the uncertain stream of Fate;
Better than all, she fenced them in their need
With iron-handed Duty’s sternest creed,
‘Gainst Self’s lean wolf that ravens word and deed.

VI.

Why cometh she hither to-day
To this low village of the plain
Far from the Present’s loud highway,
From Trade’s cool heart and seething brain?
Why cometh she? She was not far away.
Since the soul touched it, not in vain,
With pathos of immortal gain,
‘T is here her fondest memories stay.
She loves yon pine-bemurmured ridge
Where now our broad-browed poet sleeps,
Dear to both Englands; near him he
Who wore the ring of Canace;
But most her heart to rapture leaps
Where stood that era-parting bridge,
O’er which, with footfall still as dew,
The Old Time passed into the New;
Where, as your stealthy river creeps,
He whispers to his listening weeds
Tales of sublimest homespun deeds.
Here English law and English thought
‘Gainst the self-will of England fought;
And here were men (coequal with their fate),
Who did great things, unconscious they were great.
They dreamed not what a die was cast
With that first answering shot; what then?
There was their duty; they were men
Schooled the soul’s inward gospel to obey,
Though leading to the lion’s den.
They felt the habit-hallowed world give way
Beneath their lives, and on went they,
Unhappy who was last.
When Buttrick gave the word,
That awful idol of the unchallenged Past,
Strong in their love, and in their lineage strong,
Fell crashing: if they heard it not,
Yet the earth heard,
Nor ever hath forgot,
As on from startled throne to throne,
Where Superstition sate or conscious Wrong,
A shudder ran of some dread birth unknown.
Thrice venerable spot!
River more fateful than the Rubicon!
O’er those red planks, to snatch her diadem,
Man’s Hope, star-girdled, sprang with them,
And over ways untried the feet of Doom strode on.

 VII.

Think you these felt no charms
In their gray homesteads and embowered farms?
In household faces waiting at the door
Their evening step should lighten up no more?
In fields their boyish feet had known?
In trees their fathers’ hands had set,
And which with them had grown,
Widening each year their leafy coronet?
Felt they no pang of passionate regret
For those un solid goods that seem so much our own?
These things are dear to every man that lives,
And life prized more for what it lends than gives.
Yea, many a tie, through iteration sweet,
Strove to detain their fatal feet;
And yet the enduring half they chose,
Whose choice decides a man life’s slave or king,
The invisible things of God before the seen and known:
Therefore their memory inspiration blows
With echoes gathering on from zone to zone;
For manhood is the one immortal thing
Beneath Time’s changeful sky,
And, where it lightened once, from age to age,
Men come to learn, in grateful pilgrimage,
That length of days is knowing when to die.

VIII.

What marvellous change of things and men!
She, a world-wandering orphan then,
So mighty now! Those are her streams
That whirl the myriad, myriad wheels
Of all that does, and all that dreams,
Of all that thinks, and all that feels,
Through spaces stretched from sea to sea;
By idle tongues and busy brains,
By who doth right, and who refrains,
Hers are our losses and our gains;
Our maker and our victim she.

 IX.

Maiden half mortal, half divine,
We triumphed in thy coming; to the brinks
Our hearts were filled with pride’s tumultuous wine;
Better to-day who rather feels than thinks.
Yet will some graver thoughts intrude,
And cares of sterner mood;
They won thee: who shall keep thee? From the deeps
Where discrowned empires o’er their ruins brood,
And many a thwarted hope wrings its weak hands and weeps,
I hear the voice as of a mighty wind
From all heaven’s caverns rushing unconfined,
“I, FREEDOM, dwell with Knowledge: I abide
With men whom dust of faction cannot blind
To the slow tracings of the Eternal Mind;
With men by culture trained and fortified,
Who bitter duty to sweet lusts prefer,
Fearless to counsel and obey.
Conscience my sceptre is, and law my sword,
Not to be drawn in passion or in play,
But terrible to punish and deter;
Implacable as God’s word,
Like it, a shepherd’s crook to them that blindly err.
Your firm-pulsed sires, my martyrs and my saints,
Offshoots of that one stock whose patient sense
Hath known to mingle flux with permanence,
Rated my chaste denials and restraints
Above the moment’s dear-paid paradise:
Beware lest, shifting with Time’s gradual creep,
The light that guided shine into your eyes.
The envious Powers of ill nor wink nor sleep:
Be therefore timely wise,
Nor laugh when this one steals, and that one lies,
As if your luck could cheat those sleepless spies,
Till the deaf Fury comes your house to sweep!”
I hear the voice, and unaffrighted bow;
Ye shall not be prophetic now,
Heralds of ill, that darkening fly
Between my vision and the rainbowed sky,
Or on the left your hoarse forebodings croak
From many a blasted bough
On Yggdrasil’s storm-sinewed oak,
That once was green, Hope of the West, as thou:
Yet pardon if I tremble while I boast;
For I have loved as those who pardon most.

X.

Away, ungrateful doubt, away!
At least she is our own to-day.
Break into rapture, my song,
Verses, leap forth in the sun,
Bearing the joyance along
Like a train of fire as ye run!
Pause not for choosing of words,
Let them but blossom and sing
Blithe as the orchards and birds
With the new coming of spring!
Dance in your jollity, bells;
Shout, cannon; cease not, ye drums;
Answer, ye hillside and dells;
Bow, all ye people! She comes,
Radiant, calm-fronted, as when
She hallowed that April day.
Stay with us! Yes, thou shalt stay,
Softener and strengthener of men,
FREEDOM, not won by the vain,
Not to be courted in play,
Not to be kept without pain.
Stay with us! Yes, thou wilt stay,
Handmaid and mistress of all,
Kindler of deed and of thought,
Thou that to hut and to hall
Equal deliverance brought!
Souls of her martyrs, draw near,
Touch our dull lips with your fire,
That we may praise without fear
Her our delight, our desire,
Our faith’s inextinguishable star,
Our hope, our remembrance, our trust,
Our present, our past, our to be,
Who will mingle her life with our dust
And makes us deserve to be free!

~James Russell Lowell~

 Hail Columbia! May all who dishonor you, or who make war against you be embraced in love, and may they see the harm they cause themselves by harming you! May the many goddesses unite to turn back this petty assault! And may the enemies of Columbia know always that her sons and daughters will defend their Mother to the last! Hail Columbia, and Blessed Be!