Most of my life, I have believed in some sort of paranormal something…something beyond what I could see or hear. I’m never sure what to make of it all, because the logician in me argues with the intuitive in me, and nothing ever gets settled.
UFOs? Definitely. Ghosts? Meh…probably. Past lives, near-death experiences, and lucid dreaming? I’m going with yes. Zombies and vampires? I’m not there yet.
Astrology and psychics? We have had our ups and downs. Mostly ups. I can smell a rat a mile away, and when a psychic is trying to hustle me, I get surly. Not only because they’re wasting my time and money, but because the bad ones give the good ones a bad name—and I do believe there are good ones, who have easier access to information out there. Same with astrologers: the weeklies—with the except of Rob Brezsny’s Free Will Astrology, of course—simplify a really complex system that I’ve studied for about twenty years. Move along, horoscopers: there’s more to a person than the sun sign.
There was a year in my life when I spent way too much time, money, and energy sorting the bad from the good. I was desperate. An against-my-will divorce had left me emotionally shattered, but I felt a sense of calm guiding me somewhere, toward something. I held on to that. The irony was that even though I didn’t want to leave the marriage, being on my own left me free to explore the paranormal mysteries that have always fascinated me. One of these mysteries led me to my second husband.
An astrologer—an honest-to-gosh one—didn’t really see hope for me getting back together with my ex-husband. I was devastated. She also didn’t see any hope for my long-distance lover. Double-devastation. What I really wanted was to be alone, and I had kind of resigned myself to a celibate life, when she said, “I see a man who’s either a Gemini, or who has Gemini energy, coming into your life on or around December 7th.” She used astrology to see into my future. Holy crap!
December 7th 2006: I had my first date with the Gemini who later became my husband.
October 5th, 2007: That same astrologer, who is also now a friend, performed the marriage ceremony that officially united my husband and me. We went to a park. She sprinkled cornmeal in a circle and lit sage on fire, cupped in a seashell. We stood inside the circle, and she offered us blessings from the north, east, south, and west. The sun setting; it was cold in the shade, and quiet, and the only other attendees were a couple of friends – good friends – a writer and an artist, with whom we went out to dinner after.
Our son was there: I was six weeks pregnant. This wasn’t for lack of planning, but because of planning. Our original plan was a beach wedding in July, but in July, Venus was in Virgo. My astrologer friend warned against getting married when Venus was in Virgo. Leo was next, and sexy Venus in sexy Leo would be perfect for nuptials.
So she ran an astrology chart called a Davison chart, which finds the midpoint between my husband’s birthday and my own. Bingo – October 6th, and Venus would be in Leo by then. Except….not bingo. October 6th is my mother’s birthday, and getting married on my mother’s birthday would just be weird. October 5th was good enough.
I also wanted a May baby so my professor husband could spend his summer break home with us. September gave me my May baby, so there he was, swimming inside me as I inhaled the smoke of cedar and sage, as I kissed his father at sunset.
When we took our baby back to that spot on October 5th the next year, celebrating our anniversary, a new naturescape playground had been built around our cornmeal circle. And in the very spot where we stood? There was a cedar playhouse. We took him inside and sat.
Things like these keep me believing in things beyond my perception. I know that I don’t know everything. And I like it that way.
Brad Green plots a trip to a fortuneteller’s house in “Red Water” and the trip itself becomes the fortune.
“Witch Fields” by Kenny Mooney shows a new way of how someone can lose a bit of herself at work.
Al Ortolani’s trees hold onto “Secrets” as their limbs are burned alive.
Photo by Luc De Leeuw