The Magic and the Writing

Like the old chicken-or-the-egg conundrum, sometimes I don’t know which came first: the magic or the writing. Was the magic born of storytelling, or did the storytelling spring forth from the soil of spirit, from the earth and ground where I first found a deeper self?

Once, there was a small knoll that served as a bridge; as my brother and I crept up the gentle slope, we’d peer down the low but steep sides, wondering if the troll would emerge to exact its payment. Fallen trees made the walls of castles, and patches of briar and thorn hinted of dungeons perfect for villains. In such a world, knights and wizards and warriors were possible, and a deep magic stirred. Many days, that world meant more to me than a world of school buses and math problems. I was on to something—telling stories, but only to myself.

As I grew older and the world grew harder (yes, harder than it should have been, but that’s a different story), I made a mythology for this world of magic and tales. Mythology of seasons, of goddess and god whose love enveloped me like the scent of ferns. Grapevines and oaks, maples and beech trees, foot trails of deer and songs of birds, their world of mystery called me. The wind carried their silent voices. “Ask questions; find answers beyond words. Struggle for words; find they fall away. Walk deeper, deeper into us; find your true self.”

That’s where the stories were born. That’s where the goddess daughter, child of earth, star-gazer, moon-watcher, one whose blood hums with poetry and story, that’s where she found herself, her calling. It was a place of unquestioning truth, acceptance, and quiet guidance. I walked out beyond the words, to the edge of the world of humans, into the wild. An untamed part of me walks there often, and that belief in magic is what pulls me to the page and allows me to speak. Walking out beyond the words, I found the words. Speaking in an enchanted language, I weave the myth and the magic, the fae and the mundane, and deeper truth emerges from the quiet soul.

So, in the world of magic, I find the stories.The world of spirit is the birthplace of all art, which tells the stories alive, breathing, but hidden and formless in the everyday: in cups of tea and sidewalk cracks, in rumpled sheets and messy hair, in shadows and sunlight, behind eyes haunted or laughing.

Feeling the swell of the stories and poems is easy; they have a gorgeous, vibrant energy that sets me on edge—a wonderful, dazzling desire, like a longing to hold the stars or see the sunrise. Tapping into that deep energy is what gives me the strength, the courage, and honesty to transform those stories into words on the page.

Yet part of me still wonders whether I would hear the haunting melody of magic that runs through all things if the stories didn’t call me there. Did the magic of language draw me toward this deeper magic? Which did I find first? Since I’ve known the joy of both, perhaps that’s a stone best left unturned.

So song of love and sorrow, song of night and day, I call to you; you call to me. I thank thee. Blessed be.

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