The Magician by CAConrad

This text was originally published for the full moon in Capricorn on 16 July 2019. It formed part of 22 Moons, an Ignota project responding to climate grief through the Major Arcana. 22 Moons delivered a new text on each new and full moon, bringing together twenty-two poets, writers, artists, thinkers, curators, scientists, astrologers, practitioners, witches and technologists for twenty-two lunations.

We Must Understand Our Creativity Is an Organ, a Vital One

for Ian and Eleanor Swordy

The Magician is pointing toward Jupiter with one hand while the other points to Earth for grounding of the transmission. Draw this card to be told you are brilliant, and all you need to do is finally realize you must fully embrace your creative tools and integrate them into your daily life's work, pleasure, and sustenance. The Magician has access to all four Earth elements with the ability to draw down a fifth, and sometimes the sixth element from Jupiter. It is time to awaken every living human's creative organ. There are catastrophic predictions for the near future, and the only way we are going to survive and thrive together is to imagine where to best place our energies today collectively.

You must listen to your intuitive self, which flows through your heart chakra. Listen as in trust what you are hearing, then trust yourself that you can do it. Now is not the time to hesitate, now is the time to leap and know the forces guiding you also have your back. For a (Soma)tic poetry ritual with the Magician in this time of ecological crisis build it progressively for nine days, each day adding a new ingredient. Start with how we take for granted our waste. Liquid, solid, which are hazardous, which are biodegradable? Start with a daily awareness of all forms of waste we produce and where we think they go, then investigate further to find out where they actually go.

The Magician offers the opportunity to experience seeing limitless potential where we used to imagine a world with very limited prospects regrettably. A new ingredient to the ritual involves meditating on the four elements we possess in and on our bodies. Fire: every human being is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. Have you ever been outside on a day when it is 98 degrees? Feel the warmth exit your mouth; the exiting air had just visited the flame that keeps you burning. Earth: flesh, hair, run your tongue along your teeth, the most immediate connection to your skeleton. Air: breathe again; imagine what must be present in the air to keep you healthy and alive. Breathe deeply, exhale slowly until you can no longer exhale any longer, then slowly inhale until you can no longer inhale, then hold it for half a minute. How delicious is the air? Water: tears, saliva, blood, where are your fluids in your body right now? Where are the fluids flowing or stored? Now focus on all four elements of your body at once, eyes closed, quietly listening, feeling the strength and also the fragility of your body and life.

If you draw the Magician card in reverse, the solution is simple, turn around and look. Where have you been guarding against your priorities of life as a living, breathing artist? Who are you defending them from and what kind of criticism do you fear? Bronnie Ware was a nurse who worked with dying patients for many years and kept track of their regrets. The number one regret of the dying is, “I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” Always remember this, and let this knowledge help you find your strength. Stand outside barefoot on the naked Earth for twenty minutes. Understand you are a lightning rod, then write, write, write!


CAConrad is a 2019 Creative Capital Fellow, the author of 9 books of poetry and essays, and a contributor to Spells: 21st-Century Occult Poetry and the Ignota DiaryWhile Standing in Line for Death (Wave Books), received the 2018 Lambda Award. A recipient of a Pew Fellowship in the Arts, they also received The Believer Magazine Book Award and The Gil Ott Book Award. Their work has been translated into Spanish, Greek, Polish, Norwegian, Portuguese, Danish and German. They teach regularly at Columbia University in NYC, and Sandberg Art Institute in Amsterdam.