Swept Away Vol. 1 is a collection by Betania @ladyursus of Bristle & Stick of writings and art on empowerment thru cleansing with 75 pages of gorgeous color paintings, black and white ink drawings, and beautiful writing. The zine contains english and spanish translations of each written pieces from over 25 contributors and cover art by Vanja Vukelić.
Swept Away Vol. 2 is a powerful collection of writing & art on Letting go to make way for Emergence. With 80 pages that include the works of 40 different artists and writers & many pages are full color and all written pieces in both spanish and english side by side.
About Betania (they/them) - My identity has always felt very Amphibious, like I don’t fit into any of the assigned boxes. I am a mixed (Mestizx) or Ancestrally diverse person. My people come from the Ancestral homelands of the Mexica in Mexico, the Iberian peninsula, Sardinia & Wales (plus a few other little connections that I don’t know much about). I am a teacher and student of place based skills and craft, a broom maker, a forever student of Plants and folk medicine, and I was raised by Trees. For as long as I can remember I have turned to the Trees, Animals and other beings in the Forest for council. As a young person running from the various institutions I found myself in, the best places I found to hide were "wild spaces". In these so called "wild" areas I found a sense of family with the the Non-human world around me, here is where I felt held and safe. I believe strongly in the healing powers of “Nature”, believing that strengthening our connection with our More-Than-Human relatives can improve our interpersonal relationships and emotional well being.
Since I was a child I have had an intimate relationship with cleaning as a form of medicine. As a young person cleaning was the action that most supported me to feel safe in the chaotic situations I found myself. I developed a particularly special relationship with sweeping because holding a broom was when I felt the most free. I found delight in how a nice sweep left me more light, empowered, and grounded. For many years I only practiced my cleaning rituals when nobody was watching because I was deeply shamed and pathologized for these habits.
Through my journey into Broom Craft and sweeping traditions I have re-connected with the folk medicine that is carried through my Mexican lineage. I learned that Sweeping, letting go, and moving energy is deeply woven into our spiritual and healing practices and traditions. I understand now that it was my Ancestors that put the broom in my hand, their quiet whispers leading me towards healing all along.