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The Queen's Chronicles
November 2015
In This Issue

Our birthday is our own personal New Year. It is an annual reunion with ourselves - a periodic opportunity to take serious personal stock. It is the perfect time to check in with our deepest and best self to evaluate the past year and to project the next.
I usually retreat to some extent and fast to some degree for a period around my birthday, during which time I devote myself entirely to processing my impressions and my lessons, plotting my progress, pondering my problems, planning my goals. I see this introspective ritual as a way to sharpen my focus, realign my perspective and rededicate myself to living the very best life I can.
To that end, I always give myself a tarot reading. These birthday readings have proven to be an invaluable practice for me, one that I recommend highly for you. An Intuitive, transformational tarot reading for your birthday will give you precious insight on your path, your progress, your lessons, your desires, and your potential for the coming year.
Joining Mama Donna's Happy Birthday Tarot Club entitles you to a tarot reading during the month of your birth for only $120, which is a 1/3 discount off of the regular price of $180.
Readings are available in person or by phone from anywhere.

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Donna Henes is an internationally renowned urban shaman, award-winning author, popular speaker and workshop leader whose joyful celebrations of celestial events have introduced ancient traditional rituals and contemporary ceremonies to millions of people in more than 100 cities since 1972. She has published four books and currently writes for the Huffington Post, Beliefnet and UPI (United Press International) Religion and Spirituality Forum, and serves as ritual consultant for television and films. Mama Donna, as she is affectionately called, maintains a ceremonial center, spirit shop, ritual practice and consultancy in Exotic Brooklyn, NY where she offers intuitive tarot readings and spiritual counseling and works with individuals, groups, institutions, municipalities and corporations to create meaningful ceremonies for every imaginable occasion.

"What is so spectacular and amazing in my opinion about The Queen of My Self is that it gives this heretofore nebulous stage of life a name, a character, and - most of all - it captures its essence. This is the stage when a woman needs to be regal: she's bent over children for thirty years, and twenty or thirty years from now she'll be bending over a cane, but NOW she's standing tall and making her mark. She's the Queen of herself, or she can be."
- Victoria Moran, author
Creating a Charmed Life
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As I read The Queen of My Self, you described and named so much of my new experience of myself. Once I could name it, I could finally claim it and allow myself to grow with the "me" I actually was, at 52, after a complete hysterectomy because of the ovarian cancer they found very early, after walking away from a career I had cultivated for almost 20 years, after finding that my spiritual journey has moved in a totally new and exciting direction, after recognizing a new strength and power in me. Up until reading your book, I just thought what I was experiencing was a bit of craziness/laziness and not really growth. Now that I see things differently, I feel myself stronger, more adventurous, more relaxed, more confident, more accepting of my choices and much happier. Now I'm very excited about where I am and where I'm heading. That is where your help came in. With great expectation,"
- Dorothy, New York, NY

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A very grateful welcome to all our new donors this month!  
Red indicates new or renewed donors:
Randi Anderson, NY
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It is my hope that as more
and more women
rise to reign
in the fullest potential 
of our supremacy,
we will harness
our purpose,
passion, and power
and direct it toward

creating a more balanced
and peaceful world. 
This is the legacy of Her majesty.
- QMD 
Turn Your  
Midlife Crisis
Your Crowning Achievement! 
A Season of Death

Crow Flag  
Hail Queens!
November, especially this one, is book-ended by death and the lessons it teaches us.

November 2, the autumn halfway point, celebrated as Dia de los Murtos, the Day of the Dead, begins the month with the awareness of the universal cycle of life and death. At this time, we remember those who have died and honor the lineage of our ancestors.

Mid month, on Veteran's Day, we celebrate the bravery of those who have battled and suffered on our behalf - the living and dead soldiers, but not the fallen victims of such violence.

November this year has dealt the world overwhelming incidents of horrific death, displacement and terror in Palestine, Turkey, Egypt, Lebanon, France, Mali, and in the streets, malls and movies houses of the United States.

Thanksgiving ends November. Ultimately, all harvest festivities celebrate one more season of our tenuous survival. We have managed to live through another year. We have been lucky. We are alive. There but for the grace of the Goddess. . . 
With blessings of life and conscious gratitude for living,   
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
- Mary Oliver 
Cycle of Life and Death

By the half-way point of fall we are surrounded by an ambient prescience of impending death. Death and decline. Death and disappearance. The sun seems to be dying as we approach the winter solstice six weeks away. Our world is steeped in deep shadows, the light decreasing daily, dimming toward the shortest, darkest day of the year. And the year, itself, is reaching the end; drawing to a close. Another cycle completing its course. The birds and animals have departed, gone south or underground for the duration. The trees, the vineyards and fields are stripped bare, exposed to the first frost. Their lost leaves create a compost cover like a cozy comforter for the land. Dead and decomposing, they feed and warm life contained inside the earth. Incubating.

And we, too. We pull ourselves close; cover up and snuggle down. We naturally spend more time inside now. And we tend to be more introspective. Come in upon ourselves. In the season full of shadows we are inclined to explore the darkness inside of us. The shadows of our psyche. The shade of our fear. The specter of our soul. And what we discover there, if we are willing to recognize it, is the inevitability of our own demise. Everything does, after all, die, doesn't it?
I live but I cannot live forever.
Only the great earth lives forever.
The great sun is the only living thing.
- Kiowa Crazy-Dog Song
How could we contemplate life without death? What could it ever mean? Death is a part of life. The life cycle includes death, as light includes the shadows, as the day includes the night. The shadow of death offers us the insight to comprehend the vast yet vulnerable continuum of life. Understanding this, we are able to begin to imagine our own place in the eternal procession of the ages. We are reminded of all those who have preceded us and all those who will follow. Successions of generations. Like the fruit of a tree, the generations bud, bloom, ripen then fall, each in their own turn. And the death of each, nurtures and informs the life of the next. Linking the living and dead together in one unbroken chain.

Artist unknown
Queens We Have lost

There are stars whose radiance is visible on Earth though they have long been extinct. There are people whose brilliance continues to light the world though they are no longer among
the living. These lights are particularly bright when the night is dark. They light the way for humankind.
- Hannah Senesh

By acknowledging those who walked before us, we can set our own life into context. The practice of paying homage to past generations - the veneration of the ancestors - keeps that connection intact through the ages. We put our own paths into perspective by recognizing the trail blazers who made it possible. Those from whom we have inherited our world. Those to whom we owe our lives. Those whose blood and pain and guilt and triumph travels through our own brains and bodies. To those, who are our roots, we toast our thanks.

Death has taken so many luminary thinkers, writers, artists,  philosophers, healers, teachers, and priestesses of the Feminine Divine in the past several years. Many of these extraordinary spiritual leaders have been dear friends, colleagues and mentors to me, and undoubtedly to many, many others.

In the spirit of Dia de los Muertos , Veteran's Day and Thanksgiving, I hereby honor these fabulous, remarkable, inspirational and influential Queens. I offer sincere gratitude for the work they produced and the role models they were.

Margo Adler

Maya Angelou

Angeles Arrien

Doris Lessing

Patricia Monaghan

Layne Redman

Lady Olivia Robertson

Marion Weinstein 

Diana Wolkstein   

Thank you, thank you, thank you all.
Sitting in the Shadows

Everything has a shadow. Night is the shadow of day. Winter is the shadow of summer. Sickness is the shadow of health. Decay the shadow of youth. And death is the shadow of life.
The shadow is not the opposite of the light. A world without shadows would seem very flat and lifeless indeed. A life without shadows, shallow, superficial and false. It is only because of the shadows that we can see the wholeness, the three-dimensionality, the complex completeness - of which the dark is a part - of the world around us. If it were not for the shadows, we could not appreciate the light. It is the contrast, which illuminates.
Yet, when the shadow visits us with adversity, darkness, pain, and death, we tend to bemoan our fate, our bad luck, our sad fortune. We feel sorry for ourselves. And unfortunately, ironically, we find it incredibly difficult to allow ourselves to feel bad when we feel bad. To allow ourselves to be really really sad. (And not mad, which is a different emotion altogether.) We are too scared. Exposed and vulnerable. Nothing has prepared us.
We find ourselves feeling resentful, gypped somehow of our so-called constitutional right to happiness. (How convenient it is to ignore the word pursue, and all the work that implies.) We wish life just wasn't so hard. We want things to be different. Better. Easier. We yearn for brighter times, lighter moments. We want to run away, preferably to someplace warm and sunny. Someplace fun.
We are like frightened little children who need a night light. In our fear we forget that the light is always there - somewhere - anyway. We just can't see it when it's dark. It's like the dark side of the moon which we perceive only as absence of light, failing to recognize the dark richness of its own ambiance, its own opaque energy. It's own invaluable lessons. The dark offers us a chance for enlightenment, but our eyes fail us in the shadows. And so we panic, preferring anything to the deep pitch, the petrifying recesses, of our own souls.
This terror is the turning point. The time for determination. It is at this critical moment, that we can consciously choose to dwell in the dark for a spell - for as long as it takes - despite our fear. We can decide to take on the dark and to take it in. To deal with it. To go where ever it takes us. To explore the blind byways of our pain, inching along, feeling our way through the tunnels with our tongues if we have to.
To plumb our emotional depths and mine that precious secret ore of our own poignant life experience. To feel our heart actually break, explode apart, like a geode, revealing the exquisitely tender crystals growing inside. To engage ourselves passionately in all that life has to offer. For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death due us part.

The Queen's Court

The Queen's Court is a gathering of sovereign women of a certain age - our dear peers - who graciously offer information, guidance, inspiration and encouragement to each other.
We Queens know what we know. And we know a great deal. Our experience has made us wise. So, feel free to consult with our cyber council/counsel when you are need of sage advice or wish to explore a particular topic of interest.

Are you angry? 
How angry are you? 
What makes you angry? 
How do you handle it? 
How do you express it? 
How does it make you feel?    

The conversation continues:

Dear Queen Mama Donna,
In regards to your last newsletter about anger, I do believe as you said, that we are to use these feelings of anger, injustice, violation, etc. to help make progress in these certain issues and be advocates and help those and educate.
I find the concept to be a part of a backdrop of how women (and men but we are focusing on women) that back in history and now that we stain our selves, our purity, our virtuous symbol (the virgin/innocence)
if we corrupt ourselves with getting involved or standing up. So many of us are labeled crazy, bitches, liars, etc. when we are speaking up or fighting for a worthy cause peacefully and in a noble way. Look
at long it took for us to get the right to vote, we still do not have equal pay just because we were born a female, we get labeled as sluts or whores depending upon what we wear or don't wear, look like or don't look like, or that if a male behaves a certain way we had to do something to provoke it, which is not only lethal and a dangerous mindset but perpetuates violence against women.
It took so long before we had the right to control giving birth because for some women we wanted more than just having children. It's not about knocking the women who enjoy having children, but the power to be able to make that choice or use it for health reasons or to have a fulfilling sex life without worry of a child coming into the mix. Some women were tired of just getting pregnant and not being able to provide or risking their health. Now, here again we are in the year 2015 battling to keep women's health funding for Planned Parenthood (I wish the name would be changed; apparently it is VERY misleading to individuals in Congress or in politics that you would think would investigate and have the intelligence but seem so "concerned" about our health that they want the very tests and preventative healthcare measures to aid us to be taken away. Irony, isn't it? Planned Parenthood gives birth control, mammograms, checks for STD's, etc. It doesn't promote "Come here so you can have lots of babies and abortions."
Where are we headed? Why is everyone so concerned with our anatomy? Why can't we leave the decision up to ourselves? It's still an issue of being our own entity, our own person and being an equal and capable of making our own decisions. We can THINK for ourselves and SPEAK but that seems to be forgotten.)
Here is a video link to Dixie Chicks song, "Not Ready To Make Nice..." 
If you look at the video I love how the white is used (the symbol of clean, pure, etc.) and the black as a way to though when we speak with our words or certain actions then we have turned our backs on what it means to be a lady or woman which isn't so. I also love how the main singer is getting condemned for her talking out of popular belief and thenbasically she is labeled or diagnosed as a nut many of us have had to deal with that....especially back in the day.
We have so many people from government, politicians, family members, magazine, media, society telling us this is what we must do to fulfill being a good woman but why are we still being sold as property to people or made it to seem these things are healthy for us when they are binding us, holding us back? Let us use our voices and our gender as a way to empower ourselves and take ownership of what we know we can and should do.
I also think it would be worth mentioning a great program that is also available on a DVD set and clips on Youtube as well as seminars offered by the Gracie Family of Jiu-Jitsu called "Women Empowered." It's a workshop that shows self-defense techniques to help one women. Very empowering! It shows how if you ever do get to the ground on your back that is the most powerful move for a woman to use to overcome and turn the situation on the attacker's back (literally). Eve Torres Gracie helps her husband/head instructor Rener Gracie and grappling coach for UFC reigning champ Ronda Rousey teach the classes.
Here are some links for it:  
Women Empowered Clip from ABC News:
Gracie Wrist Release
Their official website is here:
Thank you and my our Divine Mother bless us, direct, and protect so
we may help our fellow sisters, mothers, friends and women
everywhere. There is a lot of healing that needs to be done. And we must be there for each other. Sincerely,
- Lisa, NJ
How do YOU feel and respond ?
I would love to further this discussion. Do send in your thoughts, suggestions and experiences.
Please send your responses or questions to
Your letters will be printed in the next Queen's Chronicles.
The Queen's Correspondence


Thanks so much for taking the time to respond to
The Queen's Chronicles. It is a joy to connect with you and to share your comments with our sister Queens.


Letters in response to
2015 Issue:
Loved that hysterical song, "I Don't Come From Your Rib, You Come From My Vagina!" What a total hoot. Brava to her! And to you for sharing it.
- Sally, NJ
Thank you for these examples of women - very different sorts of women - doing such good and helpful work to make the world a better place. Donna. I always enjoy your newsletters, and you are a great soul! Take good care, and keep doing all the good you do.
- Anne, NM
Your writing is so profound it is like going on a journey! I am grateful to you Mama Donna for who you are and the space you hold on our planet. Hugs,
- Gail, CT
Y muchas gracias santa mujer once again for your newsletters and all the sacred info you write up so beautifully. You are one of the primary energy vortexes on the planet, like Sedona, like Machu Picchu, much smaller in scale, but no less the spiraling forces of light. You are helping hold the grid in place, helping earth to sustain the strain, as conscious awareness returns, is born and rises. In beauty, mindfulness and solidarity, so mote it be,
Maria, TX
Ahhhh thanks so much Mama D. Your messages always arrive just at the time they need to, Thanks. I've passed this on to some very dear loved ones in our community.
-Marjorie, LA
You are a gift, a goddess and a joy. Your email communications fill my heart, as I am one woman who has chosen not to bear children and to follow my career dreams. Your acknowledgement means much to me.
- Janet, OR

Keep these coming, please. They satisfy me intellectually, emotionally and spiritually.
- Jackie, FL 

Please keep your letters coming. And do feel free to make suggestions about content you would like to see. Or anything else, for that matter. 
Please send your responses to
Your letters will be printed in the next
Queen's Chronicles
Kudos to the Queens!

clapping hands rotated
We extend hearty congratulations to our multi-talented circle of Sister Queens for their impressive accomplishments and successes.


Imagination is powerful. Imagination is healing.  
All you need is the courage to visualize what should be, and then give yourself to its creation.  
The result may not be what you expected, 
 but it will be right.
- Gabrielle Roth

Robin Bady, NY; Allesandra Belloni, NJ; Marcy Gordon, NY;
LuLu LoLo, NY; Suzanne Lacey, CA; Linda Mary Montano, NY;
Pat Oleszko, NY; Barbara Rosenthal, NY; and Kay Turner, NY; on their performances and/or performances of their work.
Helen Aylon, NY; Nancy Azara, NY; C. Bangs, NY; Dara Birnbaum, NY; Darla Bjork, NY; Stephanie Brody-Lederman, NY; Nancy Buchanan,, CA; Lauren Curtis, NJ; Mary Beth Edelson, NY; Karen Fitzgerald, NY; Janet Goldner, NY; Karen Guancione, NJ;Suzanne Lacy, CA; Meryl Meisler, NY; Lorraine O'Grady, NY; Carolee Schneemann, NY; and Linda Stein, NY; on the exhibitions of their artwork.

Miriam Dexter and Vicki Noble, CA, Foremothers of the Women's Spirituality Movement, Elders and Visionaries (Anthology with a chapter by Mama Donna); Glenys Livingstone, Australia, PaGaian Cosmology Meditations (CD Set); Nicki Skully, CA, The Union of Isis and Thoth (Book); and Elaine Silver, FL, The Only Real Power (CD); on their new publications.
Victoria Moran, NY, on winning the Vegan Media Outlet 2015 Award for her "Main Street Vegan" podcast.
Mollie Thornburg, NY, on her new job and new home.
Martha Wilson, NY, on being chosen for Artforum Critic's Pick.
Eclipse Nelson, RI, whose book Stand In My Heart: An Elephant"s Prayer was a winner at the Animals, Animals, Animals Book Festival.

Please send your good news, achievements, accomplishments, successes and celebrations so that our international circle of sovereign sisters can send you blessings and accolades.

And we are glad to so. It is a joy and a privilege to share in the fortune of another woman. I recently heard Oprah say the saddest thing ever - "The hardest thing about being successful is having someone to be glad for you."

It takes a centered and confident Queen to break that pattern. There are 60 million thrones out there. One for each of us. There is plenty of purpose, passion and power for us all. May we use it well! 
Circle of Concern

Helping Hands Circle

Please Offer Your Purest Thoughts, Your Heart-Felt Prayers, Your Great Good Feelings, And Your Very Best Blessings For Healing and Peace of Mind To:
Adrianne, NY; Alison, TN; Amy, NY; Babs, NY; Barbara, NJ; Bebee, DE; Berenice, NY; Bettye, NY Betty, AL; Chrissie, NY; Christine, NY; Dana, FL; Dawn, CA; Diane, NY; Dolly, NY; Dominique, NM; Dorothy, CA; Gail, WA; Jo, AZ; Gerry, VT; Joan, ME; Joan, NY; Judi, FL; Judith, NY; Karen, NJ; Kathleen, PA; Kaylin, MD; Kazuko, NY; Kim, NY; Kimi, NJ; Laura, NY; Laurie, OH; Linda, FL; Linda, SC; Lisa, NJ; Lorie, KY; Lydia, CO; Lisa, PA; Lucia, TX; Mari, VA; Margi, NY; Marna, NY; Marsha, NY; Mary, MD; Mary, NY; Mary, OH; Mary, CO; Nancy, NY; Nancy, NC; Nona, LA; Pat, MA; Patsy, NY; Paula, NT; Pearl, NY; Reynolds, NY; Roberta, NY; Sally, NY;Sandy, CA; Serpentessa, NY; Sharon, NY; Shelley, NY; Sheriden, MA; Shirley, IN; Sherli, CA; Sid, PA; Sue, CA; Susan, NC; Susan, NY; Terese, NY; Terri, FL; Urvashi, NY; Vicki, MN; Weslea, ME; and Yvette, NY; who are in the process of healing themselves from illness, accident, injury, or surgery.
Amy, NY; D. Barbara, NY; Beverly, NY; Carol, NY; Diana, FL; Eleni, NY; Gaetana, NY; Joanne, NY; Kimberly, NY; Kyia, MN; Linda, NY; Linda, NY; Maureen, NY; Meryl, NY; Beedee, NY; Patricia, Australia; Regi, CA;Sheryll, CA;Susan, NY; and Svetlana, NY; who would benefit greatly from some spiritual support.
Ali, VT; Annie, NY; Barbara, NY; Barbara, CA; Carol, NY; Chrys, NY; Deni, NY; Diane, NY; Erica, New Zealand; Erica, CT; Gaetana, NY; Gail, NY; Hemetra, PA; Janet, CT; Kat, NY; Kate, NY; Kathrine, Denmark; Laurie, OH; Lois, NY; Marla, NY; Mary, CO; Marya, NY; Meryl, NY; Nancy, NC; and Roslyn, NJ; the caregivers who are in weary need of care themselves.

May Their Spirits Rest in Peace
Rita Gross, CA  
                    Helping Hands
Please send your requests for physical and spiritual healing and positive energy so that the powerful women of The Queen's Court might send their prayers and blessings to you in your time of need. 
Life is just a short walk from the cradle to the grave  
and it sure behooves us to be kind to one another  
along the way.
- Alice Childress



Our extended circle of Queens includes some mightily talented women. Please support them by availing yourself of their superior services and by buying their excellent products and supporting their work.

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