Slypher: The Earth Goddess
This metaphor of the earth as a living being is readily understood and frequently appears in world religions. Although Mother Earth is personified as a woman, typically that woman is a goddess with the power to grant plentiful harvests and control the change of the seasons. Slypher falls into this category of deity.
In Greco/Roman mythos there are two beings of note that relate to the Mother Earth persona. First is Gaia (Terra) who was one of the primordial beings. Her body formed the earth. Through her union with Uranus (Caelus), she birthed the Titans, the giants, and the sea-god Pontus. Gaia is also the grandmother of all the gods who were sired by the race of Titans.
The second goddess is Demeter (Ceres). She presided over the fertility of the earth and the grains which grow upon it. It was through the abduction of her daughter Persephone (Proserpina) by the death god Hades (Pluto) that the seasons began. The world is cast into winter whenever Persephone is away from her mother. However, during the months when Hades permits her to leave the underworld, summer returns for Demeter is happy once again.
In Norse mythology, Jörð is another entity who personifies the earth. She is technically a jötunn, the Nordic version of giants, and it was through her that Thor, the god of thunder, was born. She is also recognized by the name of Fjörgyn.
If one pays attention to world mythologies, a pattern will begin to emerge. Together, sky and earth create life. In Hawaii, the earth-mother goddess Papa (Papahänaumoku) and her husband, the sky god Wäkea, bear offspring who become the ancestors of all people. In ancient Egypt, these gender roles are flipped for it was believed that the god of the earth Geb and sky goddess Nut together produce Ra who represents the sun.
In Theriomorph mythology, Slypher, the goddess of the earth, is mother to several offspring including Hendren through her mate, Valcum. It is fitting that most prolific goddesses also represents a prosperous harvest. In that same vein, Slypher also presides over song and dance. And why wouldn’t she? What better way to honor and celebrate the abundance of food than through those actions?
As for dual form, Slypher’s is a pink parakeet. This works for this character as parakeets are often found in tropical environments where the land is rich in both vegetation and animal life. These birds love to “sing” and fly gracefully around in the sky in a type of communal dance.
Though not as outwardly forceful as some of the other goddess personas, Slypher has the ability to allow and facilitate the continuation of life or to punish and kill disrespectful nonbelievers simply by prolonging winter or instigating a relentless plague.
So remember—never dismiss the blessing of food on the table!
(The image is a painting by Stephen Kenny titled "The Glade".)