Rhiannon Is About A Goddess

Stevie Nicks’s Rhiannon was the first song about a goddess I ever heard. Not that I realized it when the song was released in 1975 – I was a child and it saturated the airwaves for months, merging into the general Neptune in Sagittarius soundscape.

But I knew it was energetically different. Re-hearing it later as a teen – I don’t think it had ever stopped being played – I figured it out: every other song about a woman was from the point of view of a guy with the hots for her – sure, there were variations on the theme like Billie-Jean (‘the kid is not my son’) or Roxanne (‘you don’t have to sell your body to the night, Roxanne‘) but there was nothing like Rhiannon.

This was a song written and performed by a woman whose hippie chic influenced the Seventies aesthetic to an incalculable degree and it was about another woman who, at the very least, appeared to be magic.

Nicks wrote the gist of it in ten minutes and under less than salubrious circumstances. It was Halloween 1973 and the then 25 year-old triple-Gemini was at an airport with strep-throat and Mars Retrograde squaring her Moon. Fittingly, for that particular transit, she had man troubles.

This was before Fleetwood Mac or fame and she’d fled from waitressing at a singles bar in Los Angeles to hang out in Aspen, hopefully writing music while her boyfriend went on tour. According to the biography Visions, Dreams and Rumours, it did not work out as planned:

“Nicks recalls Lindsey Buckingham (the then b.f.) returning early from his tour in a foul mood. She wondered if he’d been unfaithful on tour and his mood soured even more. ‘He was very angry and he left me, taking our poodle and the car, leaving me in Colorado with the bus drivers all on strike.'”

Her parents had reluctantly footed the bill for her flight back home, she’d been dumped, there was the strep-throat and no money but then she chanced upon an airport novel (literally) called Triad.

Flipping through it, she was drawn to the name Rhiannon and general gist of the book -within ten minutes, she’d practically channelled the whole concept of a ‘compelling white witch, taken by the sky and enchanting all who encountered her…

It wasn’t till 1978, after the song had become a huge success, that she learned more about her Rhiannon character. A Welsh goddess, mythical Queen and renowned witch, she is a key character in the Ancient Welsh Mabinogion stories and so-called ‘fairy tales.’

“My story was definitely written about a celestial being,” she told an interviewer at the time. “I didn’t know who Rhiannon was, exactly, but I knew she was not of this world.” Rhiannon is the story of a lady that is from another world ~ called the Bright world ~ and she leaves her kingdom to become the wife of a king ~ a mortal king ~ but goddesses really can’t marry mortal kings, if they do they lose their powers ~ their magic powers.

And they don’t lose the knowledge of them they just ~they know everything that’s going to happen they just can’tdo anything about it. Which is a much more difficult way to live than not having magic powers is to not be able to use them and know exactly what’s coming and to not be able to tell anybody…

Rhiannon is the Goddess of Steeds and the Maker of Birds, and her song is a song that takes away pain. When you hear her song, you close your eyes and fall asleep, and when you wake up the pain is gone or the danger is gone and you’ll see her three birds flying away. That’s the legend. I realized that somehow, I had managed to pen a song that went very much with the mythical tale of Rhiannon.”

Transit-wise, Retro-Mars square her Moon certainly suits the gnarly presenting situation but what would align with such brilliant synchronicity? The song wasn’t just on-zeitgeist, successful and personally meaningful  – it established Stevie Nicks and so much of her vibe.

Well, she was born with Mercury conjunct Uranus and that Halloween, Uranus in Libra was trining that natal Mercury-Uranus as well as her Lilith in Aquarius – so was a beautiful Grand Air Trine right there. Also, Lilith in Capricorn was approaching her natal Moon-Midheaven there AND the Node in Sagittarius was (a) on the Galactic Center and (b) crossing over her natal Jupiter there.

One of the goddess Rhiannon’s many attributes is the Moon, along with nightbirds, rivers and horses. It’s interesting that Nicks has worn a  moon pendant more or less consistently since the mid-70s and that she also gifts them to people she deems worth of such selenian magic.

Having acquired the film rights to Evangeline Walton’s Mabinogion series, Nicks spoke during the pandemic lockdown about making a Rhiannon movie – she mentioned casting Harry Styles – but I don’t think it’s gotten any traction. The upcoming new vibe – Neptune in Aries, Uranus in Gemini and Pluto in Aquarius would be perfect for it though, right?

Thoughts?

Images: Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham pre-Rhiannon, the book that inspired her, the Moon pendant and a side of the Gundestrup Cauldron that may represent Rhiannon.

49 thoughts on “Rhiannon Is About A Goddess”

  1. Today is the anniversary of the Rockarena Fleetwood Mac performance in Melbourne 1977. A spectacularly giant crescent moon rose in the sky next to the stage then Stevie Nicks appeared in the dusty wind & sang Rhiannon.

  2. Loved Stevie’s music and lyrics since i first heard her as a young teen, collected all her albums along the way and still turn up the radio every time they play her.
    One of my other most favorites is ‘Rooms on fire’ and so understand the lyrics and have felt that with someone a good few years ago. The magic of the words:
    Somewhere out in the back of your mind (somewhere)
    Comes your real life and the life that you know
    It seems like it was the creation of some of those same old things
    It seemed to be the only thing left out in the light
    She had trusted many
    But been unfamiliar with almost everyone but you
    Well, maybe I’m just thinking that the rooms are all on fire
    Every time that you walk in the room
    Well, there is magic all around you
    If I do say so myself
    I have known this much longer than I’ve known you
    She had trusted many
    And then there would be someone who would enter into her presence
    That she could sense for miles.

    Yep, still brings back my memories that make me smile
    Thanks Mystic

  3. I remain fond of the persistent rumour circulating Vancouver BC in the 1970s that Stevie Nicks is a witch that lives on Gabriola Island.

  4. Stevie is one year older than me and of course used to be played on repeat in the 70’s. ‘Watch me twirl’ back when i could 🙂 dressed in a collection of antique shawls and fabulous boots no one else had because they hadn’t been to London to discover Olaf’s Daughters kid lined snow boots or bought samples from John & Merivale, squllionaire Justin Hemmes parents.
    No wonder ‘man troubles’ being a triple Gemini….lol. Loved Bombay Sapphire and ‘take from me my feathers’…what song was that, it’s a bit early for my memory-brain to kick in.

    The new layout is so so good. Bless your organic bamboo cotton sox Mystic.

    1. “give to me your leather, take from me my lace.”

      Leather and Lace.

      Stevie was originally writing it for Waylon Jennings and Jessi Colter, but she’d heard they’d broken up (Waylon was doing a lot of space dust at the time) and so she thought, well, I’ve been working on it with Don Henley, so she used it on her record with him. Waylon and Jessi still used the title “Leather and Lace” for an album they released when they got back together, but by then Stevie had released the song herself. The Waylon album is good and has amazing cover art, but it woulda been cooler if they’d done the song.

  5. I saw Stevie Nicks in concert in 2018 (she sang Stop Dragging My Heart around with Chrissie Hynde from the Pretenders – was a sweet/poignant tribute to Tom Petty) and Stevie said about the song Rhiannon – “this song has to be played at every show, the spirit of the song has made this clear” and i felt the truth in that… LOVE everything you write about Mystic!

    1. There is a song she did where she asks him to write a song for her and he replies ‘go write your song yourself’.

      1. Yep! “That Made Me Stronger” is about Tom Petty. Tom has some weird quotes around about working with Stevie in the studio trying to wrestle or sculpt songs (my word, not his) for days on end. They were a pair. Both win had the Best Hair of the 70s awards, AFAIC.

  6. So i went down the asteroid rabbit hole and checked out the other Celtic horse goddess, Epona (3838), as she is often associated with Rhiannon.
    On Halloween 1973, Epona was opposite exact Nicks’ Sun. And square her Mars, for that extra kick. You have to love these little astro coincidences.

    I also have to mention that bizarrely, it is my Epona Return! Today! 26°Gem 8H….. *Cue: grab some carrots & salt & go hang with some feral ponies i know*.

    1. That *is* bizarre! Good lookin’ out on the Rhiannon asteroid also! So wild it was so prominent at just the time Stevie was sitting in that airport (being mutable, she has told wildly varying versions of that song’s origin story over the years, but I do like this version)! I had to look it up. Bizarre: Rhiannon is 5 degrees from my Mars in Aries. Transit Epona is square my natal, which is 2* away from my Venus in Pisces.

      I remember first learning about Epona in one of the first readings I ordered from Mystic. Mystic’s interp of my Epona placement was soooooooo spot on, I still read it to Muggles who know me but are skeptical. They pretty much freak out at how accurate it is. I think maybe the reading was Asterois Galactica? Or Bitchcraft? The Rhiannon thing is even weirder now — I was thinking I should really pay more attention to where these goddess asteroids are; I know from Mystic that I have lots of astro action — Hekate conj. Sun. Persephone conj. Midheaven. Lilith conj. Moon / Uranus — and because of the recent Juno post, I now know Juno is conj Moon/Uranus also.

      And I realised, I have thought about this whenever there are asteroid convos on here and forget or get distracted (does moon conj. Uranus indicate ADHD? Seems like it should), and I’m ignorant of the wider scene, so maybe this already exists, but I often feel like Mystic is slowly putting together an entirely parallel, comprehensive Goddess Asteroid astro. (Begging the question: Where would / does Gary fit in? Some kind of modern-day Quixote / Coyote?)

      1. Yes, it’s the Asteroid Galactica reading, I’ve just re-read it & was blown away by the uncanny insights – but there’s no Rhiannon, which is a shame because i have her conjunct my Asc (12thH). Naturally, i was born an equine lover but i would love MM’s inimitable take on this.
        I don’t seriously pay too much attention to asteroids, but whenever i do seek them out for extra info on a situ, i’m always blown away by their location & coincidence factor.
        As for Gaz, can someone help me, plz? i can’t find any of the Gary posts & ephemeris. I literally looked through 100s of posts in search. I’m gutted.

      2. THANK YOU Sherat!!!
        *face-slap*…. of course! X

        I’m now very curious about your Epona placement ….??

      3. Well, my natal Epona is conjunct my Venus in 6H Pisces. So Mystic said how people wanting to date me should read horse whispering guides (true) and how I like wide open spaces, no fences, and to not be reined in, and that this also applies to my working environment — which could not be more true. I had trouble with “jobs” until the dotcom boom allowed me to be remote with flex hours. I’ve been working this way for 20+ years now, and, really, I don’t know what I would do if I had to revert to normal working conditions. The thought gives me the Deep Fear, tbh. And yeah, I’m pretty fuqin skittish during dating, esp. in the beginning ’cause I don’t like peeps trying to confine me or pin me down. Probably the “untamed” Epona energy is augmented by uber-mutable Pisces energy, making me hard to break. It’s opposite my Pluto Rising too (though out of sign), which Mystic didn’t touch on, but which I’m sure which causes me trouble somehow, because how could it not? It’s also Square Jupiter in Saggo (hahahaha I think this means motorbike!) and sextile Saturn in Taurus (I still don’t really know what Saturn in Taurus means, much less what it means in aspect). I feel like your Epona in 8H Gemini means you should be betting on horses!

    2. Hello Skarab…..Epona and ponies remind me of the Magic Mike song ‘Pony’. Do you know it. Found it very sexy and yours truly doesn’t find much sexy around lately…lol.

      1. Hiya Pegasus! No i hadn’t heard of it, but i’ve just looked it up … goodness me! … (*fanning self*) … I guess Magic Mike is screening chez moi, ce soir.
        Pegs, i’ve just read of your horrible trials the past few weeks, i am so sorry to hear it & trust that you are healing well my dear, & spring back to your copacetic self. xxx

  7. Oooh, LOVE this! Love Nicks, love Rhiannon. This song forms part of my morning get-ready-to-kick-ass music mix for when i need to get motivated to face the world.
    I was also lucky enough to see Fleetwood Mac live in 70s with Nicks going absolutely mental shaman towards the end of Rhiannon – whipping up some pretty intense spine tingling witchy magic – the highlight & turning point in the concert for me.
    Love the astro sleuthing on this! Also, sometimes there’s nothing like partner-dramas, being broke & transit lounges for creative mercurial impulses & channelling. Transit lounges must act like liminal spaces for the Uranus-Mercury type?
    So i just had to look up Asteroid Rhiannon (16912). While in Nicks’ natal chart Rhiannon [Pisces 11H] forms a Grand Water Trine with Venus & her SN – it is on Halloween of 1973 that it is very present: Trans Rhiannon & Venus were conjunct exact in Sag and conjunct Nicks’ Jupiter-Galactic Centre in her 8th H – zapping her Merc-Uranus. I guess if you’re gonna get zapped by cozmic inspo of the horse-goddess variety, this line-up sounds like a contender, neigh?… (sorry 🙂)

    1. Reply to Epona in wrong place, need to get used to new navigation. Sadly missed Nicks’ concerts the one you saw must have been a true buzz. Some astro sleuthing there!
      ‘They shoot horses don’t they’…

    2. Oh wow! This whole thing, just brilliant. That concert experience sounds absolutely amazing. And you’re so right about transit lounges 🙂 Amazing Astro for the penning of Rhiannon too, thanks for sharing that Skarab 🙂

  8. I grew up listening to Fleetwood Mac as a wild barefooted and scruffy magician. Everything had potent mythical symbolism for me and my friends wrongly thought, when the called me a witch in primary school, I would be offended. To me it was the greatest of all compliments. They bullied anyway, but if they didn’t understand and act with self awareness (I now recognise as Dyers 7 principles of intention) they were poorer for it. I guess the lyrics Stevie belted out rubbed off on my persona. Not a bad thing at all.

      1. Books ARE gold. I communicate with mine, pencil all over them, ongoing conversations.
        Was an only child meant books and art.

  9. The Mercury insta-download is real…

    Your description of the visions that she could see but not act on made me think of your recent post mystic with the sad but poignant news of your departed friend, and the fearful vision you experienced. Other accounts I find elsewhere, where the recipient foresees / tunes into a difficult event always finds themselves asking “yes but why??” Why be shown this when there is no earthly way to prevent or alter it? Is it a momentary transmission that floods all the frequencies, like driving past a radio transmission tower and no matter what the dial is showing, you’ll hear that radio station clear as day for a few moments.

    End of passing thought…

    1. I can recommend the Stevie Nick’s biography “Gold Dust Woman”. The book talks a lot about Stevie’s creative process. How important Rhiannon is to her. Her crazy fans.It was her songwriting that drove Fleetwood Mac to stadium rock status, not that she was recognised for it at the time by the machismo forces of the music industry. She is a stellar human being. The Rumours album came out when I was in Grade 5. It was huge. We used to play Fleetwood Mac school yard game whereby two girls and two boys would pretend to be the band and stand in front of a soccer goal, which was the stage of course, and play a concert with imaginary instruments.

      1. Welcome. I meant my comment as a more general observation as opposed to a direct response to your comment. The interface for commenting on MM has changed since my last visit to comment, and I got kind of lost and confused and you can’t delete comments like you used to so you got stuck with my left field observations about Stevie in response to your lyrical ethereal observations, a little confusing but there you go.

      2. Yes, I am so sorry about the comments – the previous one did an update which added Google Analytics, ie: it tracked people while they were on here. I deliberately don’t do Google Analytics or have any trackers on here so this plugin DID make commenting easier but the update meant it violated our privacy principles. That plus keeping AI bots from scraping everything has been all-consuming over the last month & I apologize. However, I am working on a way to reinstate an edit/delete option + the latest comments whilst still preserving user privacy.

      3. thanks MM re the comment posting weirdness. you are forever protecting the users of this site from unseen (unless you are in developer mode all day long) malignant forces of the internet.
        🙂

    2. ‘Passing thought’. Missed that post of Myst’s but know how gut wrenching it is to lose a close friend. A year later every Friday night our 2 hourly talk time, he seems to be in my thoughts as though he is still with me.

  10. The modern Witch Queen. Completely love and adore her and her music. Her love songs and songs about women would be different. As far as I understand it, she batted for both sides. I remember watching a live concert version of Sarah and seeing the sparks fly between her and a female backup singer. Her channelling ability – just astounding. I wonder how much Stevie has channelled that we haven’t even heard yet. Maybe Pluto in Aquarius will reveal yet more of her genius.

  11. I can’t tell y’all how often I’ve had to defend Stevie and her songwriting abilities over the last 30+ years, in particular to male musicians AND to third wave feminists, most of whom were not even interested in Janis OR Patti Smith or even the Riot Grrrl movement, back then, much less in what they perceived as Stevie’s trashy feathered hair / platform boots / stoner-has-been image. (Later, I had to defend her to young girls in beauty school back in 2010, if they even knew who she was, which was more often the case.) Now, I hear that my theories about Stevie’s brand of feminine ecriture (i.e., heterogeneous, non-phallogocentric, songs with richer textures, some of which never climax, with multiple storylines and even timelines) are being mansplained by various Millennial muso-podcasters. Can’t pretend this doesn’t irritate me OR that I trust the genuity of this new surge of interest (#UraniacProblems). Having said that, I think a lot of us little girls picked up on what Mystic is describing here about women in Stevie’s songs. Just as important are the POVs she uses — always from positions of strength, never glorifying the “object” of the song; if it’s clear that the narrator is speaking to a man, it is never from a position of weakness, or of asking the man for something, or lamenting unfulfilled desire (even when it is, it’s the dude’s fault (“you thought you saw something in my eyes / enchanted / it’s a shame that you wanted me, but didn’t try”)) — quite the opposite, it’s usually telling the dude why the narrator cannot give him what he wants. She also writes about things that most women songwriters would shy away from as being too “female,” fearlessly highlighting the feminine experience — one of my favourite examples is from “Nightbird” — “my makeup’s dark and it’s careless / same circles around my eyes / sometimes the real colour of my skin / is my eyes without any shadow.” And from that same song: “sometimes, I am surrounded / by too much love.” That’s a revolutionary statement / lyric. In the history of women in modern (at least) music, never mind rock n’ roll, going all the way back to jazz and blues. It’s an absolute subversion of the dominant trope — women are never, EVER complaining about “too much love”!!!! That and her insistence on using her own non-famous friends as her backing group, constantly performing together and portrayed in album art as a kind of coven, I felt made her feminist persona much more powerful than most people gave her credit for — for a very long time.

    In other news, I’ve been carrying around photos of Stevie’s hair for 15 years, trying to get a non-mullet-y shag and gave up. Then I learned that it’s now fashionable. Going against my contrarian nature, I decided to try to get this cut after coveting it for so long, even if it was trendy. Exited the hairdresser’s with with 7″ cut off (four years’ worth of growing) and a weird, maybe-vaguely-shaggy, chin-length bob. I guess this is what happens when Venus in Virgo opposes your natal Venus in Pisces.

    1. Penelope Darling

      I learnt from a hairdresser that a “shag” cut technically means shorter layers around the top of the head aka a mullet. I ask for “long layers in the hair with a feathery fringe/softness around the face” and it avoids the mullet version. Hope yours grows out and you find a sympatico stylist!

      1. There’s a big difference between the Keith Richards or even Suzi Quatro Rooster thing (mullets) and Stevie’s longer rocker feathered number. I’ve had mullets before. It *is* a matter of the length of layers, but someone would have to be pretty deliberately obtuse (or passive aggressive) to give you a Keith when you asked for a Stevie. At least that would make sense, though, in terms of the cut. But this is a bob!! LOL!

        Anyways, per the beauty school thing, I have worked as a stylist, so I know the actual lingo to communicate, and obviously used it, but, from the perspective of behind the chair, photos are really better than the usual fumbling language people have for what they want, and as I said, I have them! Plus a bunch of “modern” ones because the style is so popular now. No shortage of examples! It was just kinda like…whoa. My hair was literally more like the photos I showed him *before* he started cutting. And even though I have the experience I do, I’m still just, like, when I see that they are going in with the shears too high, I don’t really feel like I can stop them. “Maybe that’s not the perimeter length,” I tell myself. “Maybe he’s just making some layers and that’s what’s so short.” I can only explain myself as clearly as possible and then give it to God. Even with photos and insider knowledge, a stylist is gonna do what they’re gonna do. I deffo hope to find one who listens better. This is my first hair outing in a new town, so, it was a crap shoot anyways.

    2. Hello SheRat,

      Hair I am. 😉 I’d say grab some affordable tap in hair extensions to add the length that you need. Seeing as you’re in the beauty industry, honey it’s easy to pop in and the process is basically making a sandwich (extension + hair + extension). Image laying a brick pattern – with equal width and space apart. You might only need extensions of say 5 (sandwiches) in total which is 10 extensions. Say 2 at the nap area (go up a bit higher if you have fine hair), then next brick row would be 3. Get the colour as close to your desired colour of hair too and it can be coloured with a 10Vol developer – applied to the extensions.

      This is what I do to my hair, I qualified late in life and it’s the only way to give my hair length and style. I add curls to my extensions not too uniform just to blend and conceal them. Max heap 180 degrees (Aussie temperature guide) temp for extensions. Sleep with it in a plait at night.

      Check out PresleyPoe on IG – fabulous American and I love their cutting vibe and attitude. Really nurturing and authentic AF.

      I have fine, curly girl hair. It grows from the crown, as I have a widows peak and double cowlick. I’d get called Medusa or Cher when I used to go out to night clubs. Which is why I’d go to gay clubs and dance in sleepwear. It was the 90’s and my hair is sans fringe Siouxsie Sioux, The Misfits – Gem and The Holograms and this women I saw on the train as a pre-teen visiting my Grandparents. I thought who is she and her look is grunge, goth and magical. 90’s supermodel hair is dreamy iconic luxury.

      1. Aww, thanks man! That is deffo a good solution — probably for any other cosmo, but, I’m afraid, not for me. I can’t abide extensions, they make me feel like I’m tied down by my own head. I’d just get a wig if it came to that. The cut is cute — and because of that, I’m not at wig level. I am more just, like, shocked and amused by how drastically it is NOT what I asked for. And now thinking how freakin’ long it’s going to take to get all the length he cut off back. By the time I am able to try again, the shag will be out of style again. LOL.

      2. Thank you for the update SheRat,

        No problem about the extension, I understand you on is point entirely. It’s all about the consultation process, you’re basically looking at the duty of care requirements of your client. Know your clients needs and requirements is about showing concern and understanding. It’s a contract of service, verbally obtained.

        So I’d say to you. I found this product for $10 AU in a pharmacy and I’ve been using it as instructed after hair loss with COVID and other stressors. I’d wanted to try it as it was a brand I liked and appreciated the benefits and simplicity. It was in a store that was closing down, so I pounced on the opportunity.

        I’m now needing to colour my hair more frequently – 3 weeks instead of the usual 4-6 week mark. I’ve a natal Leo ♌️ Saturn and very strongly aligned at the moment.

        KLORANE – Serum with Quinine and Organic Edelweiss 100ml (it’s a leave in spray after you have washed and conditioned your hair, I’ve missed several applications – so it’s still working). AU retails $25 and available internationally, made in France.

        Basically spray in a little in the area you want to increase the growth and density in, a quick massage with you head upside down. Continue your styling routine and kinda don’t expect anything until 2 months. Oh fuq it’s working weirdness, how rad ✨ Caffeine and Biotin on the scalp it’s working for my slow to grow mane, which is a relief. Happy Hair Days to you and all MM xoxo 💋

      3. REALLY!?????? I am deffo gonna check that out! I’m in Norn Iron but I found it on Amazon. I’m deffo gonna use it AND give it to my partner, as his Young Robert Plant-level-luxurious mane is *just* starting to thin on top (he has Mars conj Saturn in Leo!!). Thank you soooo much!!! This brand looks awesome! When I left my husband (10 years ago next month!), I lost 30lbs in a month and that was *very* fun, except then my hair slowly started thinning. What a bummer. Fit in my skinny jeans but my hair made me look like a scarecrow! I was actually working in a salon at the time (actually, that was my last salon job), so I couldn’t really afford for my hair to look like crap, so I just stopped washing it and used ACV. I don’t think it worked tbh.

        Consultation really is so important. TBH, he really didn’t look that closely at the pictures I showed him. I mistakenly took that for the confidence of familiarity.

  12. I was only looking up this book last week…there was a bbc special on Fleetwood Mac.
    Was lucky enough to see them a few years ago….sooooo amazing to hear this sung live….the way she riffs and freaks out at the end ad libbing IS magical.
    And of course when they did Landslide was just crying my eyes out and loving it
    LOVE Stevie, thankyou for this post
    ‘taken by, taken by the skies….’

    1. I have actually seen the cauldron with my own eyes in 2021, and never knew the significance of the faces! You tell me the best things, Mystic! I can’t stress enough how much I enjoy coming over to read what you write.

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