Astral Harvest Music & Arts Festival

The Art of Magic and the Magic of Art: A Primer on the Poetics of Alchemy and Magic

Nix Nihil (Nicholas Beauchesne) is a PhD Candidate in the Department of English and Film Studies at the University of Alberta. His field of study is esoteric and alchemical poetics in twentieth-century modernist occult magazines and he teaches a research and writing course on Magical Literature (ENGL_103; ENGL_102). Nix has also been a vocalist and storyteller for over fifteen years and a Norse rune reader for five years. Combining all these skills, Nix facilitates entertaining and enlightening workshops that explore the nature of magic and alchemy and the philosophical application of these traditions in the craft of research and writing.

This seminar, entitled “The Art of Magic and the Magic of Art: A Primer on the Poetics of Alchemy and Magic” asks such foundational questions as “what is magic?” and “what is alchemy?” and moves to explore those concepts as they manifest in poetry and prose. Hilda Doolittle (or “H.D.”) and William Butler Yeats are two prominent twentieth-century poet-magi who exemplify the principles of magical thinking and esoteric writing. Attendees can look forward to reading and hearing a few magical poems and learning a trick or two about thinking and writing like a magician! Recommended for beginning and experienced writers and mystical seekers alike. Don’t forget to bring your spell books!