What is magic?

woman in white cap sleeved shirt blowing dust

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I write fantasy.

If you have read any of my posts and any of my writings, you would have already figured that out. I can hear you say “duh” in my mind.

What you might not know about me is that I believe in magic. When I think of life, the universe, and everything (yes, I am quoting Douglas Adams), it doesn’t make sense that everything is in an orderly and logical place. Without a little chaos, creativity or I call it magic, this would be a very dull world. As humans we are combinations of logic and illogic, of perfectly working systems and illness, and logic and emotion.

I’m still trying to understand the emotions. The words we have for them are so inadequate– anger, fear, love, joy. None of these words express the nuances of the actual emotion.

I had to learn how to read emotion as a young child. If I couldn’t read what was happening around me, I would end up in trouble. Extreme trouble. I won’t go into my childhood– I am just pointing out that with that background, I can read people better than I should.

It is harder for me to express those emotions on the page. I do my best and sometimes I surprise myself.

So what is magic? In my stories, magic comes from the elements–fire, water, earth, and air. Many of these mages and sorcerers learn magic systems for years before they get good at effects and outcomes. But stories are not real life.

I can look at a tree and catalog each part of it starting at the bark and ending at the leaves. The magic is when I step back and see the tree as a living being. The roots drag nutrients from the soil. The leaves provide photosynthesis. Like us, the tree receives and gives from the natural world around it.

So I feel the magic from the stones and earth at my feet, the breeze subtlety touching my skin and hair, and the feel of the leash, rough in my hand. It’s magic that my mind quits thinking and I am in the present moment.

I am with life and life is with me.

We forget how wonderful this world is… We have cut ourselves from our magic. We have cut ourselves from nature.

A few months ago, I started this little ritual as I walked the dog around the apartment complex. Instead of ignoring the world around me and counting my steps, I quit looking at my feet and started looking at the sky.

I practiced gratitude.

I started to see pines, palm trees, humming birds, and ravens. I saw lavender bushes and rabbits. I saw individual grasses.

I felt stronger and more connected to the land around me. I felt less anxious and more quiet in my head.

This is magic.

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In-between the seasons

leaf-fall
This morning my toes were so cold that I put on fuzzy socks. It’s fall in Las Vegas and the temperatures are five to ten degrees warmer than normal. I’m still keeping my bedroom window open for the fresh air. The dog cuddles under the blanket. I’m not sure if the reason I am warm is because of the thyroid medication or because of the warm weather.

I still haven’t turned on the heater although I may shut the window. I not only feel like I am in the middle of fall and winter, but I also feel like my health is between crises. I saw my doctor yesterday for a follow-up on my lungs after my pneumonia scare this summer. She admitted that I do have asthma. She wants to adjust my high blood pressure medication to see if it will change my breathing patterns. Apparently metoprolol, my current high blood pressure medication, can suppress my lung function.

As I told her, I feel good. I can walk and get out of bed. I keep up with the dog, who likes to run when we walk around the apartment complex. I do feel tired.

But the main thing is that I am still writing.

My novella, Diamond Butterfly, is now ready for order at  Amazon.com. 

diamond butterfly2017Description:

It’s in the blood.

Someone is after Nova Tewa’s son and that someone is willing to kill to get the child. Nova is on the run in the middle of the a blizzard in the Sierra Nevada mountains. She will do anything to survive.

A novella in the EJ Hunter world.

Fire Alarms and writing

This weekend I was in the process of rewriting She Called It, Wolf, and whenever I got into the story, the entire building would screech like a wild thing. It is not only inside the building apartments, but the loudest alarms were outside the building.

My Foxy trembled and she didn’t know whether to hide or run to me. I snapped my fingers and had her jump on my recliner. Then I was able to get partially dressed, put a harness on her, and grab my purse. Even though I knew this was another “false alarm,” I decided long ago that I would treat each alarm as if it were real.

Besides I have more than myself to keep safe nowadays. I have heard so many stories of people leaving the house and then realizing that they left their children or their pets in harms way. I want Foxy to know that she must find me and we would leave together.

She trembled the entire time. I still have a headache from that last alarm.

Anyway, once we were out of the building, about ten minutes, I walked her to a small grassy area past the other buildings. We could still hear the alarm. Thankfully it was more muted.

It also means that my writing concentration was broken twice this weekend. I did notice one thing. Very few of the seniors left their apartments. Herein lies the problem– when there are so many false alarms, it becomes easier and easier to ignore the alarm. It nullifies its usefulness.

So just like when the “Boy Called Wolf,” the next time there is a real fire, the seniors will ignore that alarm too.

I decided to treat the alarm as real. Next time it happens I will walk to my car and leave with the dog.