Amidst the Magic and the Snow

Last weekend, I was in Maryland, by way of the long and lovely Shenandoah Valley. We cam up through a light drizzle that fell on the fields of snow remaining from the snowfall the week before.  As always, the drive is beautiful and far too long but the company was good and we were excited about the event to come–the combined gathering of the Between the Worlds and Sacred Space conferences.

If you have some bits of Harry Potter’s wizarding world floating about in your head, you would have been astounded at what a gathering of this kind really looks like.  Ordinary-looking folks stamping the new snow from their boots, hugging old friends and colleagues with delight, dragging their tired selves and their baggage around the corner to the elevators, praying to their various and sundry gods that they had remembered everything for the class they would be teaching.

I have never attended so focused and pleasant a gathering of magical folk.  As I told the volunteers and organizers, if there was drama, I didn’t see it.  If there was outrage, it wasn’t near me.  And I was in many sorts of places over the course of the weekend–café, bar, ballroom, meeting room, vendors space, stairwell, lobby. So, brava and bravo for that, organizers–and blessings from one who is weary of the drama and the jacked-up outrage.

I was grieved that my dear Judika Illes could not arrive but I think everyone else made it.  The promised snow did arrive on Thursday morning and it brought with it the deep silence and astounding beauty that set the conference off like a jewelry setting.

There is much writing for me this week and I hope to return to the particulars of my time there. For now, I will end with my gratitude to the conveners who brought us together, for the Earth that sustained us from her cloak of white and for the community that is willing to step into the change that is upon us and shape it as smiths shape strong iron.

Our time is here and now. Let justice be served. Let the people eat well. Let us dance with our joy into the streets.

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