Written for Coven Life
by Priestess Hypatia
As I reached into my Witch Bag hanging over my shoulder, to grab that essential something, it warmly reminded me of my grandmother Gigi who is in the Summerland’s.
She was a cumbersome Greek woman with long white braided hair that always and I mean always wore an apron, from the minute she woke up, till the time she was ready to go to bed.
The little I remember of her has left me with the warmest, funniest and kindest memories. Her perpetual apron was worn over her garments like a smock that tied at the back, it had a large pocket at the front that she would fill with what I thought were presents. Out would come dried herbs and flowers in what seemed little sachets, baby tortoise shells, coins, seed pods, old pieces of jewellery, old rings, pendants and broken chains, little pieces of net and even a small Icon of St Cyprion. She even had a dried cicada once, it was a bottomless pit.
Time went and I never really thought of it much, until recently that is when I reached into my Witch Bag.
Now as we know, it is nearly Samhain here in the Southern Hemisphere. A wonderful time where the Veil between the worlds is thin just enough for that extra communication between the here and the beyond. Looking at Gigi’s painting she reminded me of her little quirks, one of them was her pet crow BiBi in Greece. Not too many people had crows as pets, so it did seem strange. She was always telling BiBi off because she would steel her valuables and hide them in the roof. On the other hand BiBi would also leave gifts around the house that my Gigi thought was so auspicious and she would put them, you guessed it, in her apron pocket. Every now and then my Grandfather was instructed by my Grandmother Gigi to raid BiBi’s nest and retrieve some of my Gigi’s valuables.
A couple of years ago I wrote an article here on Coven life about how to construct your own Witch Bag.
A Witch’s bag represents the soul of the Witch, it reflects her beliefs, her practice, and her attraction to the mysteries and unknown. A Witch is always looking for signs from here and the beyond. For my Grandmother Gigi it was from auspicious trinkets BiBi left behind and of course BiBi herself. Ornithomancy is divination through birds and when BiBi would screech or do something unexpected Grandmother Gigi would know exactly who was going to visit and even say what. ‘Ow your auntie Katina is coming to tell me her troubles’. As a young teen I thought that she was hilarious, well it’s not the case now! She was always spot on with the help of BiBi.
Ow I nearly forgot about the Icon in my Grandmothers pocket of St Cyprion.
St Cyprion was a magician that converted into a holy man by abandoning his magickal path and following the Christian faith. The irony is that there is still till this day in the Orthodox bible anti curse prayers a.k.a -spells that were written by St Cyprian himself.
I encourage you to also remember. Remember that the little things that you practice and that you believe came from your DNA, your blood line. You are all of your ancestors. We all have stories to tell whether they are passed down from words of mouth or trance. Never forget your story.