The magic in this world seems to work in whispers and small kindnesses - Charles DeLint
I made magic today.
This afternoon, I was walking back home from the library, my arms full of books, listening to the music of Loreena McKennitt and Enya. Nearing the end of an unseasonably warm winter, today felt like late spring - balmy breezes wafted sweet waves of jasmine and magnolia and the savory scent of cut grass, and even the shadows were pleasantly warm. New growth showed on the branches of many trees, presaging fresh green leaves in the near future. As I walked along the ridges of the bay, I looked around, delighting in the beauty of house and garden, wall and verge; and below, the furred green valley and the spread expanse of azure water winged with yachts.
|The harbour on a beautiful late winter day...|
It was lucky I paid attention today - otherwise I would have missed my chance.
As I walked along relatively quiet sidestreet, I saw a sign affixed with tape to the wall of a hedged garden. Written and illustrated in rainbow texta, it was clearly a child's masterpiece of commercial art.
The best shorever!KIds Jewelry andTOYS!!Family Shop(adult's makeup) DVDs + CDs
This endearing notice was lavishly illuminated with smiley faces and stars. It took me back to my own childhood "shops", and the huge excitement I felt when some passer-by bought from them - and I wanted to go and make some sort of supporting purchase from this "Family Shop" - to contribute somehow to the children's happy memories.
But the gate was shut, and nothing stirred behind the hedge. The sign was clearly less than a day-old. Had the shop closed early, due to lack of custom?
Rather disappointed, I continued on my way, and turned the corner. Then I thought of something I could do - something BETTER than simply going to the "shop" and buying something. I rested my pile of books on someone's wall, and retrieved my leatherbound and dragon-stamped notebook (which I carry in my handbag always, to capture fleeting poetic inspirations, visions and stories). On one creamy, stiff page I wrote, in my most beautiful script the words "From a Fairy". I illustrated the corner of the page with a faerie face, her hair blown across a night sky spangled with stars and adorned with a crescent moon. I tore the page out carefully. Then I took a couple of dollars from my wallet (choosing my most golden coins), and wrapped them carefully and neatly in the paper, so that the faerie face was the front of a small square package.
Near me an azalea bush rioted over the fence, covered in crimson flowers. I plucked one, and walked back to the house with the sign. I looked around carefully to make sure no one observed me, then tucked the package (fae face uppermost) half-under the sign, lifting a bit of the tape to fix it securely. I then attached the big crimson flower just above, so that the children (or parent) would not fail to see it when they came to look at or take down the sign.
|Children are naturally attracted to mystery and magic.|
Then I walked away, filled with delighted imaginings of the reactions of the children when they discovered the "fairy's" present.
I think I did something truly magical today. Spontaneous, unexpected, and wondrous for the children. I remember how when I was a child myself, I would ask my parents "Did you do this?" when something magical happened, like the tooth-fairy taking my teeth, or Father Christmas coming in the night. And my mother would always arrange it so that she could say with honesty that it wasn't her (I somehow never thought to ask my father - just as well...) The mystery was the heart of the magic.
So today, as I walked home, I imagined the children asking their parents, imploring (as children do), to be told that the magic is real and to believe, "It wasn't you who put this here was it?"
What makes me hug myself with glee is the fact that the parents will have no idea. And this genuine confusion and wondering will be picked up by their children, who will know their parents are mystified, and will draw their own conclusions. Maybe they will keep the note, and remember, even when they are older, as a magical mystery that was never solved.
Maybe they will as adults spontaneously decide to "make magic" for another child.
I was a real fairy today. And that's how I will ever be remembered by those children. Making magic is a wonderful thing. I feel it won't stop here...
|Perhaps I'll become a fairy-godmother. Who knows?|