Trickster Said, “May I Have This Dance?”

Written July, 2011. But it’s been in my head for years, which means you may have seen/heard some of it already. Heh, and I’m posting this in November—five months after writing it! Are you like me, with a lot of blogs you never get to post? Anyway, I’m risking a very personal post because I hope it will be of service to someone.

Trickster said, “I’m sad. Modern pagans and intellectuals and other free spirits say they know me, but when I come, most of them run. They write books about wildness, but when I do my job, which is to expose the staid places in them, places that supposedly keep them safe, places that happen because they’re afraid to be themselves, fully themselves fully fully fully fully fully fully fully, they say, ‘You have no respect for my depth of understanding.’ Or ‘You have no respect for my causes.” Or “You do not respect how much I struggled to become myself.’ 

“But I respect it more than they do. And I love them for it, more than they do. They do truly have great depth of understanding, great causes, great struggles. 

“Moderns dress as me, dance around in my Coyote skin, call out my name. But if I answer their call, if I join the dance, they exclaim, ‘You are going to damage someone, some poor pathetic defenseless person who does not know better.’ 

“I defend the weak. My naysayers are not actually speaking on anyone’s behalf. They are saying, ‘I must lie, declare the falsehood that you will hurt defenseless people. Otherwise, your dance will expose how I myself hurt people who are vulnerable.’ 

“Or ‘Your dance shows me those people are strong despite all they suffer. Stop dancing, I need to see them as pathetic, so that I can feel superior to them.’ 

“Or ‘I must stop your dance because it shows me that we are all defenseless in the face of life’s chaos.’ Or ‘I am afraid that to be fully, happily lovingly me is bad. So I will see that badness in you, and attack it.’ 

“It is not that I act inconsiderately. I am a Sacred Clown, but I am courteous. I never step past your boundaries. I do not try to provoke. Only young tricksters do these things. I no longer, old as I am, proclaim, ‘Look! See how wild I am! See how I break the rules!’ I do not be mean or irresponsible then cover it up by insisting, ‘You just can’t handle how intense and true and wild I am!’ Ugh! 

“No, I have become sly Trickster, polite, and not overtly disruptive, at all. I simply dance my dance, tell my stories, share my meals, and note quiet messages from Mother Earth. I inflict none of these on anyone. I just politely offer them. My dances, stories, and messages might not seem that of the Holy Fool; that’s part of the tomfoolery! 

“Humans run from me, wanting the trickster’s mask, but not the trickster. So they hold forth on who I am, why I am, and what I symbolize. As if I lived within a dissertation, or am a cleverly expressed sentiment, or am a construct made of cardboard ideas and gorgeous, artful blown-glass icons! 

“They run away, wanting my old stories—even telling them to each other—but not my current tales. Modern accounts are about themselves—their actual selves—and me. They prefer an ancient yarn about my stealing a rabbit’s tail or giving a spider its many legs. Don’t they know that they each have their own story, with me as a character in it? That they each have a unique story just for them? In fact, each person may have many stories that I play a part in. 

Merry Prankster by Kathleen Marshall

“But not all modern humans are the way I have described. Oh, the artists who capture my spirit and let it run free, who run with me! Oh, the ritualists and academics who perceive the innumerable finely-tuned and orderly aspects of my chaos, then also invite me to dinner. For them and the rest of you who stay, you who are not frightened off by Rabbit, Coyote, Exu, and my other Guises and trickster Colleagues, I am a good luck charm. Just from dancing next to me or merely sitting beside me, your luck improves, wonderful things occur for you. After a while, I open the gate for all other Divinity. All the old Gods and new Gods come pouring through my gate to love those who are not afraid of trickster today. For no matter how far you have come, how wild you’ve become, how honest you are and good you are, there’ll always be part of you that is not whole and that is still hurting others. Trickster can show it to you. 

 “And if you face it, all the old Gods and all the new Gods will heal you of it. You and I will dance. All other Gods will join in. Oxala will shine in Her/His complete glory, showing us how orderly the cosmos is in its chaos, and how in control we can be if we relinquish control. I will be happy again. 


November 2011 backstory: Some of you know how much producing Share My Insanity has taken out of me. Ditto how frustrating it is to get word out that the book exists. I’m not complaining, I choose the good fight. 

But I want to mention one challenge I had. It took about five years to sell Share My Insanity to a publisher because it goes against the hipper constructs of Western consciousness. I refer not just to the book’s ideas but also to the way the book is written. I could not find a publisher who had even the faintest idea of what I was trying to pull off.  

It was awful to write from the heart and be told over and over that no one understood what I was doing, that the project sucked. Years of rejections had me thinking that maybe I’d climbed into an ivory tower and could no longer write reality. 

Finally, a publisher said, “Share My Insanity is so accessible, yet so deep.” My gratitude to her is enormous. 

So, a lot of struggles with Share My Insanity, and the above blog, which represents one, was a personal venting, in hopes it relieves my pain and the pain of some reader who happens to see it. 

Art by Kathleen Marshall

The challenges aren’t over. I’m working hard to get word out that the book exists, despite no budget. This is Indie culture. I do not feel sorry for me, this is good work to do. Do you want to help? If I email you a PDF flyer for Share My Insanity, can you print one or more to put in your U.U. church or another place where independent thinkers gather? If so, email me. outlawbunny at Thank you! Mwah <–that’s a big kiss. 

 Pimping alert! Share My Insanity is great! 🙂 And a fun easy read, despite all I went through with it. It is actually a humor book! Yup, I had that much of a fight getting a humor book out! Anything can threaten people, if it is from the heart! 

If you’re an independent thinker who commits to inner growth, rejects cheap answers, longs to keep growing despite having made no headway (or despite gaining tremendous, spectacular, amazing headway), I 100% believe I am an author who is worthy of you. End of pimping. 


This entry was posted in Art, Writing, and Music, Community, Spirit, The Whole Thing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Trickster Said, “May I Have This Dance?”

  1. thomas byrnes says:

    Brilliant . Yeah , Trickster God can be scary ; sometimes I dance ; sometimes I run . Running at this moment , but I’m sure I’ll live to dance again . Ecstatic trance through dance ; we are each our own universe , spinning endlessly into ecstacy , as the Sufi Masters said . Rock on , FDG !

    • francesca says:

      Thank you for yr post, Thomas, love it!! And, heh, u said I am brilliant, so I adore u now, LOL! Yah, I run too, don’t we all!

  2. Sandra says:

    ~* Oh, my! Yeah, I get it. I reallllly get it. And I’ll be reading this a few more times, to get it even more.


    • francesca says:

      Wow, I am so relieved. When you are venting via the written word, it is often best not to share what you wrote, b/c it can be self-pitying, resentful, so personal as to be misleading out of context, or any number of other things that need to be expressed, thought through, and otherwise explored, but not passed along. But I felt this was not only venting but a vision I was given that seems to be for sharing. But that doesn’t mean I understood the vision correctly about it being something to share. It is an ego-trap to think everything that happens to me in my personal ritual and spiritual space is for sharing. Anyway, whew, oh, whew, you relate.

  3. Julia Swancy says:

    Um, are you *sure* this wasn’t a post directed at me??!! OMG!!! volumes to say here. Kids need me, so I hope to come back later, but I know sometimes that ends up not happening so I’m going ahead with a quick comment so you’ll know I’ve been here/read this 😉 and EGAD do I ever get it!!

    (ps got your msg after my phone decided to cooperate with normal rules of physics again, *sigh*)

    • francesca says:

      Whew, so glad someone relates, it is always scary to post something personal. Thanks for taking time, busy as u r, to say as much as u did,it was really helpful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.