Mountains sky sunrise lighting

The flower garden,

Flaunting its colorful energy by day,

Sleeps barely seen in the Peruvian moonlight.

Its blooming bushes recede to black and white,

As do memories of Home, a hemisphere away.


We sit in a circle, crossed-legged on Mother Earth,

Connecting our roots to her quiet heart.

We send our love with thoughts

And whispered words.

The world needs that.


My friends’ faces fade like the flowers,

Until I see only foreheads, cheekbones, and chins

Revealed by the glow of the full moon.


Until I see only Incan ancestors,

Wearing the faces of our former selves,

Returning from a past life to share forgotten wisdom,

Returning to help us remember.


Poem by Virginia McNamara

Gathering in the Garden  ~ Virginia McNamara

In April of 2010, I traveled with a group of friends from New Jersey to Peru. While staying at a retreat near the Sacred Valley, we gathered to perform a ceremony in honor of Mother Earth. With daylight fading and the moon growing brighter, we followed a narrow path from our living quarters to the center of a lush garden.

As the evening grew darker, the familiar American faces transformed into new ones, so that my companions now had the distinct bone structure of the indigenous people I’d encountered locally. I kept this observation to myself, not wanting to dilute it, not wanting to break the spell. But the next morning, a friend asked me what I thought about the previous night’s gathering. I told her about seeing the faces in our group change into the features of ancient Incan people. She responded quietly, but with amazement on her face and in her voice, saying—Oh My God! I thought I was the only person who saw that! I don’t think I could ever lose the certainty of what I’d seen that night…but I’m grateful for knowing that I wasn’t the only one to see it, as if the Universe wanted to solidify it for me, to thank me for believing in magic.