If you haven’t heard, Edge of the Circle Books is unceremoniously getting the boot. Their landlord does not want to renew their lease. For years, the bookstore has been Capitol Hill's go-to shop for occult literature and the scholarship of witchery.
I am still waiting to hear back from representatives of the real estate firm in charge of handling the lease for the bookstore. They don't seem to want to talk. In the meantime, I thought I’d consult some members of the occult community to see what could be done in the realm of spells or curses.
I called up Dusty Dionne (kinda rhymes with "Joey Fatone"), High Priest of the Mother Church of the Aquarian Tabernacle in Index, Washington, who was able to teach me two spells.
“All spellwork is is sending your energy toward a purpose,” Dionne said. “It’s highly focused prayer.”
He went on to explain to me that, in his view, the universe works “like a giant computer.” Spells are like the keystrokes that cause universal energies to come back at you the way you want them to.
He didn't take to my idea of casting a spell against the building itself. That would send negative vibes out into the world.
“First I have to assume, per my training, that everything that happens is to the best and highest good of all concerned,” he said. Plus, people live above the bookstore.
When I asked what kind of spells we should do, Dionne said that he wouldn’t want to do a spell that would keep Robert Anderson, owner and operator of the bookstore, in the building.
He said, “Robert had to share a bathroom with another store. He totally had more amazing stuff than his space could hold. The ritual space and the public space—though amazing and so freely given—was a difficult place sometimes because it got no phone service. People had kids and stuff, so having no service made it difficult.”
Dionne said that the best thing to do would be to make a spell that would help Anderson transition to a new space. He then described the following spells any one of us can do to help Edge of the Circle Books.
The first is a plate spell. For that, you need a plate. “You could go to Pottery Barn, if you really wanted to,” he said. “Buy a plate—because plates are made from the earth—paint it with a pentacle, write Edge of the Circle Books on it, put it on your altar, and then every day when you come home you can toss your spare change on it.” That act alone constitutes the spell.
“You could even donate that money to them at the end of the month,” Dionne said. “Either way, energetically, you’re sending them the energy of growing money.”
But the very best thing we can do, he said, is make a sun spell.
Dionne then gave me the instructions for a sun spell. He said, “Take a circle and write ‘Edge of the Circle Books New Building on it.’ This is really good spell, by the way. Then draw rays off the circle. On each of those rays describe the attributes of a perfect building for them. Maybe they need a good public space for people to meet, or maybe a landlord that cares about Robert’s mission, and so on and so forth.”
You can see what editorial staffers at The Stranger are wishing for when it comes to Edge of the Circle's new building: "good, reasonable rent," "big rugs," "sculpted animal or fruit masonry on bldg," "fur walls," "bowls of water for familiars," "large selection of white sage," and more.
After soaking in Dionne's positivity, I asked about any curses that might be artfully deployed. He said, “We don’t really do curses.”
I asked him if he knew anybody who does do curses. He said, “No comment.” He laughed, and then he added, “I do know some people up in the hills of Appalachia and down in Georgia. But you have to know with them that nothing’s free.”