The Queen of My Self

Hail Queens!

The writing of this piece has been punctuated by a series of shopping runs and sous chef prep duties in anticipation of the Thanksgiving dinner that we are in the process of planning. I have been making lists and checking them thrice, assembling ingredients and scrubbing the kitchen. Before we eat on Thursday afternoon my partner and I will have collectively devoted five days in all to its creation.

We, like everyone else I know, have both been so tired — so over worked, over stretched, over extended, over committed, overwhelmed — that my first thought about how to celebrate Thanksgiving was to have a circle dinner. That is, a meal consisting of round organic frozen turkey burgers and round organic frozen sweet potato pancakes and that awful canned cranberry sauce of my childhood cut into rounds. I thought I would be thankful for not having to cook.


I actually like to cook. And I especially like the ritual of cooking this particular meal. Thanksgiving is a primal time of cooking for days and for eating and overeating and eating leftovers for days. It is about bounty and abundance, appreciation and gratitude, connection and interdependence. It really is a Circle Thanks Giving. Thanks for the circles of our near and dear. Thanks for the cycles of the seasons, of the moon, of our lives. Thanks for the cosmic sphere that we live on, which supports and defines our living. And there is no better way to express that thankfulness than with some luv’n from the oven.

Dining with one’s friends and beloved family is certainly one of life’s primal and most innocent delights, one that is both soul satisfying and eternal. -Julia Childs

Food is the fuel of the energetic life force and, as such, it has always symbolized abundance, well-being and fertility. To eat is to ingest the divine essence of the universe itself. Food and drink taken together in community and in company with the deities becomes more than a meal. It becomes a benefit. A feast, a spiritual festival, a holy communion. A frank recognition and celebration of the flesh. A time out of time to enjoy the carnal arts, to indulge the appetites, feed the hungers and sate the thirsts with full understanding of the ephemeral transcendence of life… for tomorrow you may die.

Hospitality, especially generosity with food, has always been a valued expression of honor among people everywhere. It was, in point of fact, a stark necessity of survival, and remains so in many places to this day. Among most native American nations, a visitor, any visitor at all, is immediately offered something to eat. It doesn’t matter how many guests, how unexpected, how early or late, or how few provisions a family possesses. Actually, in my experience, those families with the fewest possessions are often the freest with them. Guests, of course, are obliged to eat in order to uphold their part of the bargain. People feed each other. Period.

Then, with good friends of such attributes and good food upon the board, and good wine in the pitcher, we may well ask, When shall we live if not now?  – M. F. K. Fisher

Bon Appétit!

Yours for food for all,

xxQueen Mama Donna


Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She is the Midlife Midwife™ offering counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity. Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to





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