My life has gotten very strange since moving to Troy, NY & not just because of the pandemic that hit a month after moving. At first I wanted to tell everybody, but as time goes on I want to less. So I decided to blog about it instead. Right? Do the opposite of what you want to do, that's the secret to success & good mental health.
I began conscious magical practice when I was about 21. 15 or so years later, I am only just dipping my toes in the realm I dreamt of. Contact with spirits versus contact with archetypes. My first ghost encounter happened around the time I began my magical path. I was not looking for ghosts or even interested in them. But I had started seeing someone who claimed to see dead people ALL the time. He described seeing the presences of the dead as well as other more nefarious sorts of spirits devoid of humanity. I was not sure what to believe. It all sounded crazy to me but the more he talked about it the more I could see what he saw. Not all the phantoms, but the energy of death itself. He claimed to be full of that death energy due to early near deaths. He said it was a physical tangible kind of energy. I asked him to show me. He pressed his palm into my forehead. I at first felt nothing. Then I felt some kind of chemical bath upon my nerve centers. The closest I can describe it to is the effect of certain mind altering substances. Colors brightened, my senses got turned up, my pupils dilated. That feeling you get in the fall, it was like that. When the veil is thin & the air crackles with strange life. Something beyond life. The eternal power socket of the universe.
I started asking him for it like it was a drug so he became very reluctant to share it too often. Its not a drug, he told me. I met my first ghost because a fellow student contacted him about some 'disturbances' in her dorm house. She told him that she was hearing someone crying on a very regular basis. That & the fact that Billie Holiday seemed to always be playing when she returned to the house, was starting to get under her skin. As we used a pendulum & a sloppy pie chart of the alphabet, we asked her about herself. We found out her name was Emily Mather & she hung herself because her father forbade her to be with someone she was in love with. If you google her you'll find a few things, in addition to another Emily ghost in Vermont who also hung herself on a covered bridge in Stowe, VT. This bizarre coincidence is definitely one I will have to further investigate.
Having met her myself I can say if you go up there she will probably try to talk to you. She appears as an icy patch of air. Super cold. Like the temp drops several degrees. You will feel her like a cold wind coming in. She is very lonely & very chatty. We are not sure when she is from because records are spotty but possibly pre Civil War. Her haunting ground is what used to be the Mather family farmstead. Marlboro College by Brattleboro, VT, which was what it became, is now no longer. Another school might come in its place but she will remain. She is still very much there.
After my encounters with Emily I did not have any meetings with the dead. Not until I moved to Troy, NY in February of 2020 & I met Hazel Drew. Hazel, for most of you is a name you don't know yet but you will know very well soon. She already has someone playing her on TV in a famous show that matches her in uncanny vibes. She is Laura Palmer in Twin Peaks. They even look the same, her & the actress who plays Laura Palmer, Sheryl Lee. Almost as if she herself had cast the tragic star of her own show. Mark Frost's grandmother was alive during the time Hazel was murdered. The bizarre homicide went from local true crime tabloid to ghost story. His grandmother told it to him as a ghost story, saying Hazel haunted the swampy spot she was last found. Teal's Pond, a tiny pond of a local farmer. The pond is still, btw on the Teal's property so I'd be careful if you wanna go investigating. It is also right by the highway & theres nowhere to park without looking suspicious.
There are a couple documentaries in the works about her & there are some books out. The identity of the killer is something nobody has discovered to this day. It is a tough case because there's no physical evidence to look at. It has been over 100 years. She died in 1908 at 20 years old. The irony that at that age I was just about to embark on my path is not lost on me. I feel duty bound to tell her story. I promised her I would spread the word about her story. I will be also publishing a book about her with CLASH Books. Not one I write myself. It will be an actual procedural investigation but with a quirky, eerie & human touch. It will be the story, from an investigative standpoint of the facts of the case. An attempt to recreate the wold she lived in & the type of life she led. Collected from firsthand accounts as well as detective work.
The way I met Hazel was because she appeared to me in a dream. She gave me a book. Then in a friend's dream a couple weeks later, I gave him the book & when he opened it he saw her name. Without knowing who she was he googled her & found she was Lynch & Mark Frost's muse. The strangeness did not end there. We then went to her graveyard & to Teal's pond to check it out. We made contact in the graveyard after finding her stone. She showed us how she was killed with a stone back to the head. We both heard a man say "Hello, beautiful," as he jauntily approached, dressed in a loose fitting summer suit & hat.
The experience left us both shaken but intrigued. My paranormal detective partner, I will call him until we officially announce the book, set out the next day to do some actual sleuthing. He found the picture of the man we saw. It was his suspect. In the book we will reveal who we think it is, but for now, all I can say is he was a successful person, well respected in the community.
It sounds insane but I dyed my hair blue for her. Before moving in to the new house, like literally the day before, I got the mad urge to go from this nice soft peach shade I was actually quite happy with, to a blue. Some kind of bright sky blue. I bleached my hair 2X & dyed it all in a period of hours like some kind of hair degenerate. Fortunately I take good enough care of my already bleached & colored to hell hair that it survived the transition with most of its body intact.
When I arrived at the house I painted a room blue. It is the room I call Hazel's Room. I cannot say much about why I know that's her room besides that she made it abundantly clear she had once done things in that room. Things that stayed in the walls. So it is her room. The house was built in 1890. So it would have been around at the time she was in the Troy area.
I keep an altar for her that I keep with fresh to semi fresh flowers. I light candles for her. She is kind of always here, watching me. During Covid you would think that would be incredibly unnerving but its actually ok. She is like a friend. A strange sort of friend. She is highly mobile. Which is extremely unusual for a ghost. She has several stations she stops at. So when she comes to Troy this is her landing spot that she is tethered to because of the experiences she had here. She probably has a spot downtown somewhere as well. She spent a lot of time in Troy & loved the town. Her other tether that I know of is the largest tree in the graveyard where she is buried. She lies in the Brookside Cemetery in Barberville, NY. This tree is impossible to not miss. It is massive & covered in gravestones. They leaned stones upon it. Not sure why the ones that are on it are, if it is on purpose or by chance. But in any case, the tree is unmissable & spooky as hell.
She wants her story out there. She wants her killer found. She wants when people come to Troy to think of her. She wants people to know who she really is, beyond the tabloids, beyond Twin Peaks. My life has not been the same since she floated into it. I see her as part spirit guide, part friend, part supernatural superstar.