One of the main things I learned in writing The Strega and the Dreamer is that the womb is the power center in a woman. Reconnecting with my great-grandmother taught me the womb is the “mountain within,” a place of strength, deep knowing and connection; a well of deep sustenance. I have written extensively about what I call the archetype of the womb in the following two articles.
In the novel The Strega and the Dreamer, Eva, the protagonist, has a mentor, Giuliana. In the following scene Giuliana reveals one of the deepest mysteries of the Streghe.
Giuliana reached across the table and grasped Eva’s hand within hers. “Now you shall learn the deepest mystery of the Strega,” she said. “You will see that so much that you know and have been taught is only half-truth. The mysteries are right beneath the surface, accessible to all. Some find them on their own, as you have with eating the mountain. Though they find them, they may not fully understand.
“The mountain, the grotto, the ocean, all bodies of water, these are all wombs of the earth. We can retreat to these earth wombs while we are alive for nurturing and sustenance, as you already have by eating the mountain. But Eva, women carry this nurturing sustenance within them always. Women have this power in their wombs for far more than creating children.”
Streghe are commissioned to care for the wombs of women. By caring for the wombs of women we are doing so much more. We are caring for all earth wombs.
~Theresa C. Dintino