It’s 5:00 am, I’m drinking really gorgeous French-press coffee with a splash of heated cream, my permakitten is mawing her breakfast, and we’re both impatiently awaiting the sun, who’s not planning to grace us with her presence for another 90 minutes.
It’s that time of year. Today is All Saint’s Day. Yesterday was Hallow’s Eve or Samhain, the festival of the dead and the end of harvest. And with the clocks turning back, this evening has lasted an extra hour.
It’s safe to say the veil is lifted.
My overfamiliar and I have really felt it. At 3 am yesterday we were gently tugged awake by guides who normally let us rest. At first I was cross—it had been a terrifically taxing week and I needed the sleep—but as I floated up to full consciousness I could feel the magic pulsing all around us. Gracie’s head swiveled everywhere: she saw plainly what I only sensed. From my kitchen window the cityscape twinkled brighter than usual.
I needed that fairy dust. Change is still afoot, and I welcome any wind on my back to ensure it’s beautiful, not just brazen. So I piled autumn fruits and gourds upon my altar, lit some sage, and threw on the purple and gold mumu that has been my uniform this fall. I visualized purple light all around me, just as a clever witch suggested, and lit a small fire in my impromptu cauldron (a purple bowl. Lately all I crave is purple). Then I created some space. I chanted and wept, and honored all the deaths I’d experienced this year—good situations that had soured, the departure of my dear auto Sadie, lovely friends who’d left the Earth. I meditated on some energies that had outlived their utility—sexual jealousies, internalized glass ceilings, the traumas of the ancestors—and gave them to my cauldron. I drank wine and ate apples and basked in the most hallowed voices in my record collection: Nina, Ella, Aretha, Stevie. I invited the dead to join me. Then I burned more sage, and bathed in salt and oils, and said goodbye to everyone.
After that, I floated through my day. I put on long layers of tweed and wool and fur—purple sneakers and lipstick, even—and tried for the fifth time to score Hamilton tickets at the Richard Rogers theater on Broadway. I cheered for the winners without regrets; ate a bowl of hot beans and pork and rice at a Mexican diner; and walked home over the bridge. I felt lighter, I really did. When I got back the house was wonderfully empty.
And now we’re ready for a new day.