I’ve titled this collection Maritime Magistery because the stories evolved from two seemingly different but amazingly similar transformational situations in my life. The first was experiencing the natural world I knew as a child: the sea, the sandy beach, and the maritime forest at North Carolina’s Crystal Coast. The second, based on my life’s work, was my clinical (psychoanalytic) and personal experience dealing with human psychology. What I’ve observed over the years—and what I hope these stories will convey—is the similar transformational impact of weather on nature and life events on the human psyche.
Sometimes the impact is negative; sometimes positive. But rarely is either result permanent, because typically, both nature and the human psyche endure—even if compromised. Furthermore, none of these effects on nature or the human psyche are universal: one live oak may be battered to the ground by the wind, while another is twisted into a uniquely beautiful sculpture. Similarly, the exact same life opportunity can be liberating for one person and devastating for another.
For me, noting these comparisons and weaving them into fiction has been a life-enriching process. Identifying with a live oak twisted by wild winds as well as with a person traumatized by loss allows me to feel more alive and connected to both the natural and human worlds. My hope is that readers, too, will benefit from making their own enriching personal connections with the characters and situations in these stories.