I’ve been experiencing an increased number of synchronicities of late. One such that particularly struck home for me occurred this past Sunday night as I watched television with my wife and son. Connor is a fan of Once Upon a Time and Kim and I enjoy watching it with him.
In the season finale, the Sorcerer’s Apprentice was talking with Henry, the biological son of Emma, the Savior, and adopted son of Regina, the former Evil Queen. He said,”The best way to show your love for those that are gone is to tell their stories.”
That resonated for me. It is what I have sought to do here, each Tuesday, by sharing stories of Brent, gone now fifteen weeks.
Oddly enough, shortly after the Apprentice delivered this bit of sage advice to young Henry, the next storyline was teased for the coming Fall Season. The Darkness had been unfettered from the confines of The Dark One’s dagger and its human vessel, Rumpelstiltskin. It was learned that to defeat this shriven, tenebrous evil the heroes of Storybrooke would have to turn to a powerful wizard, the very wizard who had tethered this darkness long before. His name? Merlin, of course.
As you may recall, I had just written last week of Brent’s affinity for that half-demon necromancer. A story I didn’t share then, but will now, delves somewhat deeper into that connection and flirts with Jungian Synchronicity a bit as well.
One weekend, in 1987, I believe, when Brent and I were living on Ashland in Muncie, we had ourselves a little adventure. For the better part of the week before I had been spending time in the Ball State Library, having been granted access to their Archives and Special Collections, studying Crowley’s Konx Om Pax and revisiting the Sacred Magic of Abra-Melin.
I was strung out and frazzled and in need of a break and diversion (though in all honesty, the entirety of my collegiate ‘career’ was little more than a diversion). Brent had been tackling the books pretty hard himself that week, as I recall, and his girlfriend has something going on and we were to be left to our own devices.
That usually meant road trip… and road trip it was. Brent had read an article about Woodhenge, a sacred site just west of Monk’s Mound in Collinsville, Illinois, and was itching to see it for himself. The largest circle had been reconstructed just a couple of years before and we decided to go have a look. We loaded up my Horizon with necessary supplies and hit the open road.
I guess this is where the synchronicities started stacking up. See, before leaving Muncie we stopped at Stonehenge for some smoking essentials. They had this really cool poster inside and we both would stop and stare at it every time we went in. It was of Merlin constructing the Giant’s Dance, levitating the stones into place. Not odd, in and of itself, but it set the tone, I guess.
Sometime later though, we made a pit stop at a little trucker’s diner on Highway 70 and Brent found a matchbook lying in the parking lot to an Excalibur Exotic Dance Club with a silhouette of a nude woman holding a sword aloft. We lit all our cigarettes from that matchbook until it was spent.
Collinsville, we discovered, was in St. Clair County (you know, as in William St Clair, 3rd Earl of Orkney, Baron of Roslin and 1st Earl of Caithness who built Rosslyn Chapel as a refuge for the Knights Templar). Our Grail Quest, which began with a stop at Merlin’s Stonehenge, was taking on a life of its own. We had already found Excalibur after all.
Woodhenge was an impressive site, made even more so by our heightened states of being. We met some interesting characters. Broke bread and took sacrament with them. After, we found a little campground to spend the night and light a fire. It’s name, oddly enough, was Cupp’s… as in Grail Cup?
An epic journey, from start to finish, with enough bizarre occurrences, coincidences, and synchronicities to write a book about. And it was just one of many Brent and I shared. I’m just thankful no Killer Rabbits were involved.
To quote the Sorcerer’s Apprentice once more, “The best way to show your love for those that are gone is to tell their stories.” I am thankful I have so many of them and the opportunity to share them.