12. In Search of Magic


Blog 12: October 22-28, 1986—I can’t keep track of time in this love bubble. What is happening to me? I am becoming completely lost in this place that feels oddly right. This space of nothing. Everything moves through it at an unusually slow pace—slow, but fast. It’s a contradiction, like when they say you have to go slow in order to go fast.

These days I ride on a prayer, especially since making a promise to this wide-open desert of New Mexico to stay here. Given my background as a journalist and photo-journalist, I decide to interview and write articles on Debbie Jaramillo, the first female mayor—and definitely the first Latina mayor—of Santa Fe since it was inhabited by the Spanish 500 years ago. I send my articles to major Latina magazines, which eagerly accept them. But for the most part, I am content living day to day, dancing, making love (with Richard), and going nowhere, really.

But then, suddenly this bubble bursts, and I scream out, banging the floor in rage, asking why in the hell I’m out here. I feel lost and uncomfortable with this feeling. I want something magical to happen, for some insight to explain this odd stop in the middle of the desert. I want to learn from a shaman or someone who can show me how to work through the blocks that keep me resisting the magic I believed in as a child.

From seven to eleven years old, I used to sit in the fields of Spain and pray to God. For some innate reason, I believed in magic, in an invisible world, even though I was raised with little religion. Later, in my mid-twenties, when I danced with my partner, Stefan, I also experienced how we are creators of the magic that exists between us and our relationship to the eternal. I lived that magic, but now, here, in a land so similar to the high mesa terrain of central Spain, I’m lost.

I sit still with myself and ask what it is I really want. I came out west because I longed for more land, more humanity. I wanted love. I had also hoped for home where I didn’t have to fight to live a spiritual life, and where I could find wisdom in the ancient ones.



19 thoughts on “12. In Search of Magic

  1. It is interesting that you picked today to write about when you asked yourself why you were in Albuquerque; and also asked yourself what you really wanted. The last few days, I had been extremely angry, triggered by a phrase someone said to me when I know that I was not of that sponsoring energy that phrase implied. I decided to use that anger as propulsion to clarify what it was that I really wanted, who I was, what energy I would embody going forward. What I was or was not willing to do. I talked to a highly intuitive person about this and he asked me to do a homework assignment: left column, what I wanted to do; right column, what beliefs, conflicts, resistance, come up, and middle column, my minute thought process as I do this exercise. I’m in Albuquerque to get my feet wet, and shoot, my Higher Self wasn’t kidding about that!

    Liked by 1 person

      • har-har-har! How about chia seed goo? It is just as good as eggs in food cooking so….. why not? 🙂 Albuquerque has been a bundle of challenges – the people I meet here are mostly significant connections and have brought me back to my core wounds, hurts, and things I suppressed long ago, and now am looped back to face the full pain and emotional impact of those choices once again. An invitation to do things differently, and a very forgiving city if and when I choose not to do something differently because I am not ready for it. A very accommodating and hard teacher if I decide to do something differently.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Back when I lived this journey, I came to see Albuquerque as a place in between worlds…neither here nor there….not the past nor the present…a place of death in a sense. But it’s a kind of death where you rest, while also shaking off the old to make room for a whole new way. Here things can be very still, but the earth is moving below you enough to seriously help you make that change. It’s like when we leave this world but go to a place in between to prepare for the next phase, life, vibration. Or it’s like Jesus going into the desert for forty days…you have no idea what will happen to you in the desert! I came back here this time, about 15 years later, because I felt this was a place to learn and grow my spirit’s work. I believe this still to be true.


      • I agree. This is a place where we are confronted with the pure heat and light of the desert come from a very azure and moist sky, a deceptively parched-looking land that is teeming with life. In this intense heat and light are equally intense contrasts of cold and shadows all at the same time – an ideal stage for our greatest phase of spiritual aridity, and our greatest opportunities of growth.

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  2. Nicely said. How long have you been in Albuquerque? When I first came here, it was when I was in my late twenties, as my blog mentions. That age can be a challenging one also no matter where you are.


    • When June 1st comes around it will be two years that I have been in Albuquerque. That amount of time has gone by so quickly now – and a lot has occurred for me in those two years. An even shorter amount of time will seem to have passed until it is time for me to resume my external travels and head for Spain to start walking the Caminos. At least that is my intent – time as we know it is liquid and I think it is more about reaching a certain energetic state that will determine when I resume my external travels.

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  3. I have long engaged in a philosophical debate with myself over belief or disbelief in magic, and even what magic is–that is, how we choose to define it.

    I know that I have had many experiences over the years that I have personally defined as magical. Most often, these experiences took the form of vivid shamanic dreams that involved among other things the casting out of dark entities, guarding and guiding the dead, and connecting with spirit animals. this was of course during a time when i was going through a rebirth of sorts, doing a lot of searching and inward journeying to understand myself and my relationship with the world better.

    These shamanic dreams have left me in recent years, and I often wonder why. Perhaps I no longer need them. Perhaps at this point in my ongoing debate, i am less inclined to believe in magic.

    And yet, when it comes to my beloved crafts of music and lutherie, even as I study and master the science of these things–even as I can’t bring myself to “believe” in magic–I feel its presence there, lingering deep within wood given new life and new purpose, or in the breathless pause between the notes.

    Perhaps, magic exists in choosing to feel the profound spark of a moment without seeking to understand why it exists.

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  4. Yes, magical moments are a beautiful gift. I merge with the unseen and the unexpected happens.
    It is magical that I breathe, that I hear the song of a bird and the sound of silence. Life is quite magical. . . . .

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  5. Will you (did you) find the magic in the visible world, in the tangible plants and rock of desert and mountain? In my sacred space the magic lives in the boles of trees–a clear face, the shape of a wild boar–and in the majestic wings of an anhinga drying itself. It is always right in front of you, waiting to be noticed.

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    • Yes, yes, yes, my Typist. I did find and continue to find the magic in the visible world. It is interesting how my journey of many moons ago that I share in my blog is a different one than the one I walk now. Yet, the angst, and the longing of back then brought me to the magic of now. As the poet Rumi once wrote… the longing, the crying out is the answer…that crying out opens a space for the grace of life to flow through, because our longing is willing to be real, the break open all that stops us from feeling and seeing and loving what is. I love your recent writing on the trees. You share your experience of being present and in love with the physical reality that is with us every day, if only we stop long enough…the stopping and slowing down is the part that can take a while to learn, especially in our fast-paced culture.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you. Just finished Luis Alberto Urrea’s Wandering Time and thought of you. (How quickly we get to that state on Internet time, “I thought of you” as of an old friend.) It is a book about the magic of the land, and the book itself is magic, spell-binding. Desert and forest, mountain and meadow, Boulder and National City Urrea paints the west in sunset and moonlight and peoples it with saints and maniacs. When I got to “Desert” in the winter section I immediately thought of you and your beloved nueva meseta. Do read it if you haven’t. Hell, read all of Urrea but start here.

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  6. I’m so glad you thought of me regarding Urrea’s works. I hadn’t heard of him, yet his writing sounds beautiful and something I’d enjoy and connect with. Wonderful! And yes, it is funny how this blog world and what we share can make us feel like old friends…even though I think of you are “the typist”. I like that too. I should come up with my own name, rather than Michelle.


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