Celebrating Ten Months of Poetry Magic at Catland Books

Since July of 2015, Catland has been opening it's doors to Brooklyn's poets and writers in the form of Mystic Poets Open Mic. This once-monthly gathering has transformed into a dedicated community of authors, poets and witches. Readers are invited to bring their sonnets, prose, essays, diary entries, and literature of all kinds, with all topics welcome and no rules honored.

(Except for one rule. All readers must bring a single haiku for the Haiku Contest.)

This event began as the brainchild of owners Melissa Madara and Frederic Jennings, who saw the void of poetry mics in North Brooklyn, and answered the call. Both established poets themselves, the pair schemed over cocktails and dreamt of an evening that both honored the inherent magic of the written word and gave writers freedom to speak their truth. In their decree that this evening would have "all worlds open / all verses given voice", Mystic Poets was born.

Now one of only a handful of poetry open mics in Bushwick, Mystic Poets has been setting the stage for novice and advanced writers alike. Through the months, speakers have returned again and again to sharpen their skills and be inspired by others. The experience has been transformative and powerful, as some writers have returned to hone their voices onstage, while others are approaching the microphone for the very first time.  While not all participants subscribe to the mystical realm in which Catland makes it's home, on this night, the shop becomes a temple to the power of the written word. 

This month, Mystic Poets Open Mic invites you to join us for our tenth month of readings & revelry. Celebrate with us as we approach our full year mark, and what was once a small open mic comes into its own as a dedicated and diverse community of artists.

If you would like to be a part of our next Mystic Poets Open Mic, please send an email to info@catlandbooks.com, or RSVP to our event on Facebook. Our next round will be on Friday, May 27th, at 7pm. 

Exclusive Interview with Tarot Reader Blue June

Blue has been a fixture at Catland Books for the past year, and has brought us nothing but joy. Her unique, ego-free approach to witchcraft and divination makes a curious exploration of the occult approachable and exciting. She passionately integrates the occult into the mundane, and her hand-crafted talismans and line of magical cleaning products (both of which are for sale in the shop) expertly remind us that the mystical realm has a tangible, tactile experience as well. Her reading style is open and inquisitive, and her practical advice is delivered sweetly and warmly to all those who seek it. 


Melissa : How did you first get involved with Catland Books?
Blue : I first became involved with Catland as a patron, regularly attending events such as Witches Compass and other rituals.  Like many people in the neighborhood I was drawn to the space and found a community that would come to play an enormous roll in my personal growth in the following years.  
 

Melissa : Where do you think your interest in the occult stems from?
Blue : When I first approached the occult it was with intentions of academic study, but like so many of my peers I soon realized that I had been practicing magick my entire life without even realizing it.  It's become such an enormous tool for self evaluation over the years and is now a huge part of my life.
 

Melissa : When did you begin reading tarot?
Blue : I began reading tarot for myself when I was in high school, but I did not take the practice very seriously.  It wasn't until many years later that I started to study more intensively with mentors and teachers.  I have been enjoying the rewards of being a professional reader for nearly 3 years now.  I have many projects in my life but tarot is my greatest priority.
 

Melissa : What do you think is unique about your reading style?
Blue : There are many aspects of my personal style of reading that make a reading with me different from anyone else, but I believe the most unique thing that I offer is Lithomancy.  Lithomancy is a system of crystal casting divination much like rune casting but done with gem stones.  Gem stones each have their own properties, connect to different chakras and can even reveal what season to expect certain events, so used in tandem with a tarot spread we can lock down a great deal of information of what's to come.
 

Melissa : What advice do you have for people who are interested in having a reading, but may be hesitant?
Blue : To be honest, if it doesn't feel right you should not have the reading.  If you're simply nervous about it because it's new to you that is completely normal, and I believe enough for both myself and any skeptic so those aren't really issues but if the idea of getting a reading seems wrong you absolutely should listen to your intuition as tarot is based on intuition to begin with!  I'm a strong believer in the Law of Attraction so when it's the right time and place you will know.
 

Melissa : I understand that your brand name is Magickal Talisman's Tarot, and that you're also a supplier of hand-crafted talismans at the shop. Which came first, the talismans or the tarot?
Blue : Many people new to us spell the business name incorrectly and I believe that is worth talking about.  I realized over time that Magick Talismans Tarot would become well enough known that it would eventually no longer be an issue and other aspects of synchronicity have made my faith in my branding choice stronger over the years.  The tarot definitely came first, talismans started as custom order and gifts, but what I could not have foreseen was the crystal casting aspect playing into the term talismans.  Gem stones are often used as talismans for protection, drawing, healing etcetera, so the name has only become that much more adequate.    
 

Melissa : Are the talismans meant to be worn as jewelry, or to be worked with in a magical sense?
Blue : In the past my talismans were not as versatile as they now are.  They came in a sachet bag and were meant to be carried for a particular intention.  Because most of them were custom made, they were very specific in their purpose.  Now they are made to fit into a more general intentional use for the owner to decide for themselves.  Each talisman is made at a particular time and moon phase and they have spells written on the back which is to be repeated aloud with intensity to charge the stone.  They can still be carried in your pocket or hung up in the home, but they are now made to be worn as a necklace charm as well.  
 

Melissa : How did the The Broom Closet come about?
Blue : The Broom Closet began about 2 years ago in a discussion in my living room.  Energetic cleansing has always been a well discussed topic amongst my close friends, a friend wanted to start a business offering home cleansing and house cleaning combined.  Her idea was that she would clean and I would energetically cleanse, banishing negative energies and replacing them with more suitable intentions in the home.  The name came to me right away and I got to work on developing a line of organic cleaning products made with essential oils and fresh dried herbs that would boost the magick we wanted to provide.  Unfortunately she didn't have the time to participate so with her blessing I took the reigns.  I did offer house cleaning for about a year, but I realized that the cleaning products themselves were the most marketable part of the business.  I do still make house calls for energetic cleansing.
 

Melissa : Can you describe how the Broom Closet products work? What goes into their construction that differentiates them from name brand cleaning products?
Blue : The Broom Closet's products have some amazing abilities, one example is the Glass Agent.  This glass cleaner promotes clarity of the mind, decalcification of the pineal gland and psychic awareness.  It also protects mirrors and windows from becoming portals for negative energies.  Another good example is one of our best sellers, the All-Purpose Disinfecting Wipes.  Our reusable cloths are great for the environment and can be washed and refilled at the monthly Full Moon Market at Catland for half off the original price.  These are convenient for quick wipe ups and are safe on all surfaces and also clip onto Swiffer mops easily while also providing protection and energetic cleansing due to the strategic time it is made.  All of our products are made at a certain time of day, day of the week and phase of the moon and contain particular essential oils and herbs to further serve it's set intention.  Because all of our products are organic they are much safer for babies and pets but also non-toxic for the general customer as well.
 

Melissa : What else can we be expecting from Magick Talismans Tarot and The Broom Closet in the future?
Blue : Aside from our Custom made Talismans and Magick Bathing Salts there is often something new to try on our shelves at Catland.  This summer we will be providing a Hex Breaking Bath within The Broom Closet line of Magick Bathing Salts.


To find more information about The Broom Closet, Magick Talismans, and about Blue herself, please check out her website. For information about booking a reading with Blue, call us or visit our Readers page

New In the Shop

This week, there are so many new things on our shelves! Our big Spring restock has brought back a couple of crowd favorites - cauldrons, altar cloths, mortar and pestles, rose petals- as well as a few new treats from our local artisans! Here's a quick virtual tour of what's new:

Specialty candles are back! You asked, and we listened. We're now stocked with crosses, skulls, saint candles, male / female candles, figures, tapers, chimes, pull-outs and more!

Baphomets patches have arrived! Your favorite t-shirts design is now available in a patch! Rep your favorite team like the blasphemer you are!

New crystals in the shop! From selenite to kyanite to raw lapis lazuli, Catland is now carrying all of your favorite crystals. We currently have the largest selection of crystals in Bushwick, so be sure to get them while they're here!

Brand new herbs have been fully stocked in our apothecary! Our full list of herbs on sale now includes : agrimony, alkanet root, allspice, bayberry root bark, bay, benzoin, blue vervain, calamus root, calendula, cardamom, catnip, cedar, cinnamon, comfrey, copal, damiana, elderberry, eucalyptus, fennel seed, frankincense, hyssop, juniper, lavender, lemon balm, lemongrass, licorice root, marshmallow root, mugwort, myrrh, myrtle leaf, pennyroyal, peppermint, plantain, quassia bark, rose, rosemary, rue, sage leaf, star anise, st. john's wort, thyme, valerian root, violet leaf witch hazel, wood betony, woodruff, and wormwood!