Mundane Magic


There are plenty of things in the world that strike me as inherently magical—things that possess some kind of strange, surreal quality that may be obvious only to me. Keeping track of these things, even in the back of my mind, is good fodder for short stories or interesting details in scene, even some quick inspiration if I’m stuck. It’s nice to keep a little log of things that seem otherworldly. Here are a few of mine:

  • Kudzu that covers everything in sight, turning the landscape into a green, lumpy monster.
  • Those cats that look like goblins. They’re smarter than they appear, I just know it.
  • Small houses amid rolling green hills. Perhaps that’s my Irish ancestry rearing its head.
  • Strangely shaped rocks in the woods.
  • Crows and ravens: I know this one is cliché now, but it got that way for a reason. There’s a gang of four crows that lives in my neighborhood and I swear that they run the place.
  • Very shaggy cows, e.g. highland cattle. There’s something regal about a shaggy cow, and that’s just not how you expect a cow to look.
  • Mushroom circles. Botanically speaking, mushroom mycelia just grow in that circular pattern and sprout up at intervals; there’s no fairies involved. Knowing that doesn’t mean I’ll step in them, though.

If anyone has anything like this–common things that evoke a sense of the magical or uncanny–feel free to mention them.


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