Here for a Spell

Here for a Spell

Human beings have been telling stories of spells and enchantments for a long time. The potent idea that one’s form can be changed by a powerful god or magician boils up out of the old myths of Rome and Greece and sprouts everywhere in the world’s fairy tales. Why are...

The Bridge from Speech to Song

The Bridge from Speech to Song

I’ve recorded a little impromptu talk here (with an equally impromptu demonstration) of how I’ve been working with poetry lately and crossing the bridge from speech to song. The lines I’m demonstrating come from a poem by St. Teresa of Avila. I also make reference to...

A Brief History of My Voice

A Brief History of My Voice

Since January, I’ve been doing a lot of singing and exploring what it means to sing, speak, and write in our natural voices. I wonder how much real freedom our voices get and the extent to which they are distorted by the culture at large and the media through which we...

A Different Kind of Mirror

A Different Kind of Mirror

I find it fascinating to hear the stories of the people who come to wonderlit.com. Thanks to the Internet, my subscribers enter through doors that are everywhere in the world. Hariny is a recent subscriber who is 20 years old and pursuing an honors BA in English at a...

Where Are My Muses?

Where Are My Muses?

Sometimes it’s hard to have faith in our inspirations. I wrote a memoir around the year 2000 called The Tower Princess and I’m still trying to figure out how to, or if to bring the book more widely into the world. It’s being read by an editor as we speak, and I...

The Power of Song

The Power of Song

A few nights ago, I went to see a Toronto Storytelling Festival event, “Stories of Resistance,” directed by Mariella Bertelli and featuring storytellers Peter Chant, Louise Profeit-LeBlanc, Rico Rodriguez, Donald Smith, Sandra Whiting, Mariella Bertelli and singer...

A Downright Genuflection

A Downright Genuflection

When I was pouring my coffee this morning, a few lines came to me. God says the reason I ask you to kneel is because I’m down here. Last night, Ian and I watched “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” a documentary about Fred Rogers, the man who created “Mr. Rogers’...

Destiny’s Song

Destiny’s Song

"Destiny's Song" came to me when I was working with the Italian fairy tale Catherine and her Destiny. When Catherine was a young woman, her destiny appeared to her as a goddess and offered her happiness. But she could only have it for half of her life. What would she...

Come Back, Persephone!

Come Back, Persephone!

After presenting “The History of my Voice” last week at the Health and Spirituality Network meeting in Toronto, I discovered this little two-part monologue that I had written several years ago. It emerged out of the insight that the myth of Persephone’s abduction into...

Cinderella’s New Year

Cinderella’s New Year

A Fictional Story by Michelle Tocher It comforts me to think that there are things we can leave behind in the old year.... and somehow, in the tumult of letting go, there's a finding of something essential that will carry us into the year ahead. That's the inspiration...

A Little Solstice Story

A Little Solstice Story

Dear friends, The other day, coming down the steps of the subway, I saw a homeless man who was sitting by a pillar with a sign. He had been crying and he was trying to compose himself as people streamed down the escalator. My heart was caught by the sight...

Song of a Spinner

Song of a Spinner

During the 1990s, when I was enduring the worst of the symptoms of chronic pain and fibromyalgia, I moved inward and shifted my attention to the feminine characters in fairy tales. They seemed to know a lot about being cast out of the mainstream and thrown...

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