An Introduction to My Search for Magic

As a child, I was always drawn to tales of magic and wonder. Be it Enid Blyton’s books about the Magic Faraway Tree in its Enchanted Wood, or the haunting mysteries of the Green Knowe novels of Lucy M. Boston, my tastes in literature tended towards stories of normal children being drawn into very abnormal adventures. Back then it all seemed so excitingly possible, and I was in no doubt that one day I would stumble across my very own Faraway Tree.

An illustration by Peter Boston for The Children of Greenknowe

As adults, of course, we give up on all such childish things; after all, there’s no such thing as magic, right? But recently, as I move into my fifth decade, I have noticed how many of my interests and choices are still informed by a subconscious search for this lost magic. In the books that I choose, the artists whose work I admire, or the places that I visit, there is a thread of potential enchantment. Not surprisingly, I enjoy reading works of magic realism, and find a strange fascination in art which plays around with ideas of the uncanny. I love the Romantic potential of ruins and candlelight, and the magical promise of remote hillsides and ancient burial mounds.

In this blog, I hope to share some of the highlights of this on-going search, because I am sure that I am not alone in my unwillingness to give up my belief in the possibility of magic. I intend to write about the people, places and things which bring magic into my life, and hope I might inspire some of you who have embarked on a similar quest.

Magic is to be found in a variety of unpredictable places, some of them more obvious than others. Many of the locations that I visit will probably be off the beaten track, obscure or almost ignored. I doubt there is magic to be found anywhere that has a coach park and a gift shop, but I am prepared to be proven wrong in this assumption. I make no apology for the fact that many of the books, paintings and places that I mention will be evocative of the past, not because I hang on to a rose-tinted craving for the ‘good old days’, but because they form a link with a time when magic was an everyday reality; a time when every village had its old woman who could dish out  mysterious potions or terrible curses, when every candlelit, draughty corridor held the potential for ghostly apparitions, when every unexplained grass-covered mound might conceal its own resident faerie or demon. In the noise and rush of modern life, the subtle sounds of magic are so often drowned out by the roar of traffic or the omnipresent buzz of technology. But perhaps I will find some modern magic too, magic which speaks of the power of the present or the unknown possibilities of the future.

I for one am convinced that there is magic out there.

You’ve just got to know where to look.



10 Responses to “An Introduction to My Search for Magic”

  1. Magic and mysticism are all around us…we just have to open the door to these unknown worlds! Happy to read that you have kept your interest in this subject open…enjoy the magical ride!

  2. What an interesting blog you have , and what a wonderful quest you are on! Yes, a little magic in our modern world would be welcome. I wish you well in your search.

  3. Hi there, Thanks for stopping by to check out my blog and the follow, hope you liked what you saw. Looking forward to seeing more from you, 🙂

  4. Hey, I would like to award you with 2 awards. They were given to me and I was asked to pay it forward and I thought of you. Your blog always inspires me to challenge my brain when thinking of material to cover. Thank you xoxox I hope you find the time to accept them xoxo

  5. vanessalovespostcards Says:

    Well this is a very interesting topic to write about! It made me thinking where I have been feeling the magic latly…and I remembered the lines of Nazca! you should definetly check them out!
    All the best from Germany

  6. Oh, dear, another stack of books I must read. I never heard of Green Knowe!

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