Fiona Tinker’s contribution to Moon Book’s Pagan Portals series picks up an oft-forgotten method of magical discovery: poetry. In Pathworking through Poetry Tinker discusses some of the great poems of Celtic canon, their literary merit, and how they preserve the spiritual lore of the United Kingdom. Using poetry by Yeats, MacLeod, and O’Sullivan the book delves into tales of Angus and Brigid. After analyzing poems from each poet, she concludes with some methods for approaching deities for deeper work.

Pathworking through Poetry is an example of the cross-disciplinary approach necessary to deepen all Pagan studies. Tinker pulls from two sources to create this work: her literary background and her considerable knowledge of Celtic practice. Her graphic that explains literary analysis of a poem also teaches a student of the occult a method for analyzing symbols –symbols that can then transfer into personal practices.

For readers not inclined towards Celtic practice, the book still makes a worthy read for the example poems followed by the analysis. This method can apply to poetry and lore of any tradition. For those inclined towards the Celtic, this gives a rich, deep sense of culture – and certainly can improve relationship to one’s gods.


~ review by Diana Rajchel
Author: Fiona Tinker
Moon Books, 2012
pp. 78, $9.95 US