in my late teens and early twenties during an investigation of paganism and feminist-inspired goddess worship, i discovered the power of rituals and symbols and magick with a “k.” i hadn’t yet learned to self-mock, which meant i took myself and the practice of magick with a “k” too seriously, but i knew to direct whatever accruing psychic powers i was born with in the service of blessing and never cursing. i picked over and chose what resonated for me from a buffet of religions and spiritual practices, ancient and new age. i devoted several years to the study and practice of crystal healing, although i rarely admit it, and i have a home stashed with gorgeous rocks leftover from that period. pendulums and tarot decks and chalices collect dust in bookshelves and cabinets. i found a forgotten chalice in the back of the cupboard this morning and decided that since i’m drinking diet coke when i shouldn’t be, at least i can mock my whole life by sipping that poison from a chalice once used in rituals of magick with a “k.” i have a friend who lives part-time in manhattan and part-time on cape cod who taught me that anything (including and especially tequila) can be ingested as a healing elixir if blessed with that intent. drinking diet coke from a chalice can neutralize its ill effects, if only by the power of my denial.
monday was my half-birthday, which means that if i round up, i can now claim to be forty years old. yesterday i met someone who is 29, who turns 30 next month, and he was much older and younger than i remember being a decade ago. he builds art. he used the word “build” rather than “create” and he didn’t claim to be an artist, but his humility implied it. he currently builds art in the form of high-end custom motorcycles. he dates a pastry chef who sends dessert porn to his phone. he knows better than i who he wants to be and how to live that beingness. maybe i knew those things at 29 and during the past decade i’ve misplaced that knowing. or maybe if who i wanted to be was a modern-day steve mcqueen, then i would know better how to live my dream.
who i want to be has something to do with letting go of who i no longer am. i am less and more. i am lighter and darker. i am stronger and more vulnerable. i am grateful to be right here, right now, with diet coke in a chalice taxing my single kidney, looking toward a long life that approaches one moment at a time. i can hear emily dickinson whispering in my ear, “i dwell in possibility.”