Elemental Magic in the Briarverse: The Wilds

Originally published at: Elemental Magic in the Briarverse: The Wilds - Ackerly Green

This week, we’re closing out our elemental magic series with the final magimystic element on the chronocompass: The Wilds.


Element: The Wilds

Associated Guild: Balimora

Associated Magimystic House: House of Change

Associated Time of Day: Midnight


As with the other five elements, there’s a logic to the placement of The Wilds as the final element, both in this blog series and in terms of magimystic order. The associations between this element and its respective guild and magimystic house are some of the strongest in the Briarverse, in my opinion, because of the intertwined, dual natures of the themes they represent: life and death, change and stability. As with all of nature, these concepts serve as a reminder that we are constantly moving and growing, even when it doesn’t feel like it, and though each cycle must inevitably come to an end, we can expect another one to begin again before long.

The Wilds are the one element that always gives us trouble whenever we’ve had to think of new ways to portray it, and not just because of the Great Chaos that has become synonymous with its associated guild’s inclination towards shenanigans. When we were in the process of creating the guild bearings for Balimora, for example, we never wanted to be too simplistic in our interpretations and tried to avoid blanket associations like “people who love nature” or “people who pull pranks” (shoutout to Steve). What was more important to us was that we found a way to incorporate The Wilds thematically, if not literally, for the vast range of wisdom and potential that is synonymous with the natural world. By thinking of the bearings as representations of the multifaceted nature of life and change, we were able to draw out what we saw as the truest identities of a guild so in-tune with the world around them that it seems written on their bones: the Connector, the Caretaker, and the surprisingly serene Keeper of the Chaos. We were able to see all aspects of The Wilds represented in these expanded identities, and yet, even those who share a bearing will never manifest its attributes in the same way. As with everything else in nature, each bearer is as unique as whichever facet of The Wilds they represent.

Being one of the more tangible elements, The Wilds is also one of the easiest to incorporate into a regular practice—magimystic or not. Especially during this time of great global change and uncertainty, it has been a wonder to walk outside and notice that despite all of the chaos, spring has still arrived in this part of the world. Here in New York, I’ve seen tulips sprouting from sidewalk gardens, and the cherry blossoms and magnolias in the park are in full bloom. It can pour sheets of rain one day and be so lovely and sunny the next that I spend the entire day with my windows open. Regardless of our worries, The Wilds persists in its patience and its beauty, reminding us all that there is a time and a place for everything and everyone, and even if nothing else is certain, The Wilds teaches us to look for grace in the uncertainty.

If you’re lucky enough to have access to nature right now, I hope you’re relishing it. Whether you have a full-on garden or just a few kitchen herbs, potted plants or fresh-cut flowers, you are bringing magic into your home, and breathing in the wonder and the reassurance that is The Wilds’ gift to all of us. As we close out this series on elemental magic, I hope it has helped you incorporate a little bit of magic into your life, whether it be through the planting of a seed, a moment or mindfulness, or a stronger resolve in the face of uncertainty and change. In that sense, the six magimystic elements transcend the Briarverse in the ways that they are made available to us all, in whatever way we choose to use them.