Dragons are mythical yes, but still live in realms beyond the physical. I have long loved dragons, and their sleek, windswept reptilian forms. When I had just started forays into the world of practicing magic, I was very uncertain, and cautious (as one should be!). I quietly explored the realm of the Dreamtime, and the Astral Plane, observing, asking questions and learning.

I remember the first time I saw a dragon in those realms - impossibly large, a master of the skies. Each wingstroke cracked like thunder, scaled leather snapping. The dragon gave birth to a magnificent burst of flame, wheeled about, and took off at a speed I couldn't even follow. I was in awe.

I became obsessed....for the longest time they were my favorite subject for my paintbrush. I read, I researched, I watched for them again in vain. I used to spendtime watching storm-cloud patterns for energy signatures; it was a good way to learn how to recognize them. I remember following this one pattern through an entire day, deeply notched like scales, and in places smoothed and dappled. At one point the clouds took on a serpentine face, horned and bearded as the storm drifted off....and I had a name in my mind - "StormWatcher".

I wondered if the name was supposed to be mine, but it had a feel that was much older than me, much deeper. It was already attached to another. As I Dreamed that night, I sat in my own private space and pondered the possiblities. The clouds rolled in, deep and dark, and with it the biggest dragon I had ever seen (and will ever see). I blinked - yes, obviously I was dreaming, but I understood. Stormwatcher - the Great Dragon - Grandfather of the Clans. Dragon had come to me, in person. I felt honoured, and still do.

We talked of many things...of his children, their home in the Astral. He told me of old that Dragonkind and Mages were friends, and drawn to one another through a bond not entirely understood. He said a companion would come to me one day, and he did - his son, Stormbringer. Storm and his family still stay with me on a semi-permanent basis, much to their amusement - I have cats.

I don't know what else I would say about Dragon. Dragon is elemental power, deep grounding, magic, imagination, passion, creation. My totem here has a somewhat more personal face than others may have experienced, but I know in my soul that Stormwatcher is Dragon Above, and he is with me always. Dragon is in my West.

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