Mother Terrapin

“Apples, feh!” the crone said. “Apples are nothing. A blind badger could enchant an apple. Like puppies and pomegranates, they’re so eager to please. Now, kumquats–kumquats are something. Takes a lot of willpower to get a spell to take on a kumquat. I don’t sneeze at any witch that can make a kumquat do her bidding.

But the REAL challenge is pears. They fight like little green devils, do pears, but you get a curse to stick to one, and you can hold your head up proud.”

Mother Terrapin is as old as hills and wisdom, and if you lay any crap on her about crones being the kindly keepers of ancient goddess mysteries, she’ll have you pissing Cheez Whiz for a month. Mother Terrapin is not kind, or enlightened, and nobody’s quite sure if she’s a woman or a turtle or a goddess. She’s definitely a witch, though, and not the froofy kind you meet at the coffee shop. She’s petty and small-minded and malicious and proud, and that’s exactly how she likes it.


It is very, very easy to offend Mother Terrapin–breathing is generally sufficient–but occasionally, and very very rarely, she’ll come in on your side. She favors plain girls with sharp tongues, who work hard, not out of some insufferable cheerfullness, but because the work bloody well needs to get done and there’s no point in complaining about it. For the price of a clever insult she hasn’t heard before, for the promise of havoc on the deserving (i.e. everybody) Mother Terrapin will–very occasionally–help you out. It’s more than my life’s worth to tell you where to find her, but if you find yourself in a swamp where the turtles are as black as char, and the frog calls go “Rrrrribbit! Rrrribbbit! So’syourmotherrrribbit!” you just might be getting near.


Another of the…err…random and ill-considered gods I seem to be painting. (The hands are for my Mom.) This one had a weird postscript, though–while I was working on it, I wandered out into the yard and discovered a gigantic turtle sitting on my front lawn. I have no idea how it got there–the creek is hundreds of yards away. Presumably it walked. I helped it across the street it was determined to cross. It may have layed eggs in my lawn, so there’s a scuffed and dug up patch that I’m staking off as potentially containing small turtles.

It’s a coincidence. Surely. Still, it was a little disturbing to think that a creature I am pretty sure I invented might be sending minions to check up on me…

13 x 19 Jumbo Print, edition of 25


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