Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
Where do the willows weep?
Where wars are fought and corpses sleep,
Where time is stopped and love is fleeting,
And all the blessed take the beatings.

Where do the willows weep?
Where the wicked rest on council seat,
Where infants wail unconsoled,
With no one to love,
To have and to hold.

Tell me where the willows weep!
Where justice crawls and corruption leaps,
Where righteous men live in the streets,
Is THIS the place where willows weep?!

Is THIS the place where willows cry?!
Where only evil can satisfy,
Where wings are clipped and none can fly?
All "truths" are started with a lie
A lie that penetrates so deep,
It haunts the cities in late night sleep,
Into the children's dreams it shall seep.
Yes, this is where the willows weep.
Johnny Overseas Sep 2014
The wind whips wistfully once again,
I wander in the willows.
Where were you while I wander in the willows?
Prob'ly picked a pal and put your head upon their pillow.
Until it finds my will, oh I'll be counting to until, oh.

And until it 'comes until, oh, I'll be wand'rin' in the willows.

Wand'rin' in the willows wants me walkin' in the weeds.
Willful killful is the till-full that would plant what please the needs:
A wrapping of our hands before you leave on leaves, the breeze.
'Fore walk with me until oh,
Since we can't stay here in the willows.

And until it comes until oh, we'll be wand'rin' in the willows.

See, what I want won't willow with me if it's wand'rin' in the willows.
Neither will it reach until, oh till it kills, oh this until, oh.
It should me wander back the weeds,
Forget this please, unbreath this breeze,
But you leave, to me alone, this willow feels until oh, see?

And until you come again, until, oh, I'll be wand'rin' in the willows.

The wonderful the willows,
This tragic love until oh.
It may
In may
It may willow.
May be,
Until, oh......
Hm. I only seem to be able to write like this in autumn.
phocks Nov 2014
a warm dawning sun
rises slow on hazy horizons
with winds wildly
blowing
down endless
interconnected currents
we wake up
to birds singing
timeless songs of morning
and our forgotten past
leaves us hanging
like willows weeping
in the rain
from this year's nanowrimo novel
http://phocks.github.io/nanoisms.html
Weeping Willows was selected as the daily poem November 10, 2014
Ron Sanders Feb 2020
(Glade, World, Master, Boy, Hero)

                                                 GLADE

There is a glacier.
Its blue tongue’s tip just tastes a frozen gorge.
There is a gorge, its walls shattered by cold; a once-green thing that, in dying, birthed a thousand aching fissures. It works its jagged way downhill, round ragged rifts and drifts until it comes upon a little frosted wood.
There is a wood, an island locked in ice.
Within this wood the gorge descends. It wanders and it wends; it brakes and all but ends outside a clearing wet with sun. And there, forking, its bent and broken arms embrace a strange, enchanted glade.

There is a glade.
And in this glade the black bears sleep, though salmon leap fat between falls. Here the field mouse draws no shadow, the eagle seeks no prey; they spend their while caressed by rays, and halcyon days are they. Here rabbit and fawn may linger, no longer need they flee. For in this timeless, taintless space, the Wild has ceased to be. (Outside the glade are shadow and prey, are ice and naked death. There blood may run freely. There the eagle, that thief, is a righteous savage, a noble fiend. But once in the glade he is dove, and has no taste for blood, running freely or otherwise).
And in this glade there nests a pool:  a dazzling, blue-and-silver jewel; profoundly deep, pristinely clear. All who sip find solace here, for this is the Eye of Being. They lap in peace, assuming blear, not knowing it is seeing. And ever thus this pool shall peer:  a silent seer, reflecting on—all that Is, and all Beyond.
(Outside the glade there lies a world where rivers ever run, where ghastly calves in random file revile a bitter sun. East, the day is born in mist. West she dies:  her rest, the deep. And North…North the Earth lies mute. Wind gnaws her hide, wind wracks her dreams. Wind screams like a flute in her white, white sleep).
But in the glade are tall, stately grasses, sunning raptly, spinning lore. Roots render the rhythms, blades bend without breeze, as signals ascend from the glade’s tender floor. (In this wise the glade weaves its word, airs its views. All the glade’s flora are bearers of news). They do not wither with fall, for in the glade there is no fall. They do not bind or wilt or brown—they gesture, spreading the mood, the mind; conveying, indeed, the very soul of the glade. As ever they have, as they shall evermore.
Bees do not hum here; they sing. They fatten the dream. Mellow and round are the timbres they sound, sweet is the music they bring. Birds do not sing here—they play. They carry the theme. Dulcet and warm are the strains they perform. Gifted musicians are they. (All in the glade are virtuosi. They were born to create. Melody, harmony, meter…are innate). Now the performance is lively and bright, now full, now almost still. For, though all in the glade may lean to the light, they must bend to the maestro’s feel.
And yet…there was a day, long ago in a dream, when this ongoing opus was torn. And on that day (so the lullaby goes) the wind brought a scream, and Dissonance was born.
There was a noise.
Moose tensed, their coffee eyes narrowed, their patient brows creased. Bees mauled the tempo, birds lost their place. The grass stood *****, all blades pointing east. There was a crash, and a shriek, and a naked, bleeding beast burst stinking through the fern, fell stumbling on its face.
Moose scattered:  unheard of. Sheep brawled, geese burst out of rhyme. The symphony, forever endeavored to soar sublime, fluttered, plunged, and, for all of a measure, ceased.
The pool was appalled…what manner brute—what kind of monster was this? Furless flank to forelimb, hide obscured by blood. As for its face…it had no face; only a look:  of shock frozen in time, of horror in amber. A deep welling rift ran temple to chin, halving the mask, caving it in. Such a grievous wound…the pool watched it stagger, on two legs and four, thrashing about till it came to a rise. There it labored for air, wiped the blood from its eyes, lashed at illusion, looked wildly round. Beholding the pool, the beast tumbled down.
And there this wretch plunged his thirst, drank his fill, fell back on his haunches.
The pool became still.
The two traded stares.
The glass read his features:  that durable eye pondered the wreckage and probed the debris. Revolted, the pool sought the succor of sky. But that thing remained—that face…in all creation…surely there could be…no other creature so ugly as he.
And he gazed in the glass.
Beneath the surface were…images…swimming in currents of shadow and light. He saw half-shapes and fragments…hideous men, exotic beasts…saw blue worlds of water, saw white worlds of ice…it was all so vague and unreal—yet somehow strangely familiar. Deeper he peered, but, as his mangled face neared, the sun smote the pool and the shapes disappeared. The brute pawed the ground and, dreaming he’d drowned, shook his head sharply and slowly looked round:
There were starlings at arm’s-length, transfixed with suspense, their tail feathers trembling, their dark eyes intense. Fantails and timber wolves, stepping in sync, paused for a sniff, stooped for a drink. Bees, pirouetting, threw light in his eyes. Seizing the moment, the pool pressed its hold.
And the glade revolved.
The freak watched it spin—saw the ferns’ greedy fingers reach round and close in, saw the tall grass rise high in an emerald sheen, swaying to rhythms from somewhere obscene. This place was madness; he struggled to stand, but, weak as he was, keeled over cold.
And the glade heaved a sigh, and the tall grass reclined, in curious patterns once rendered in whim. Far off in thunder the hard world replied, as iced pines exploded and screamed on the breeze. Down bore the sun, a chill just behind. The pool, grown blood-red, fended frost from its rim. Details dissolved in the oncoming tide. The pool dimmed to black. Night seeped through the trees.
Now flora found slumber while, pulsing below, the pool was infused with a soft ruby glow.
Soon birds bearing beech leaves, and needles of pine, laid down a spread and returned to the limb. But breath from the North blew their blanket aside. The wind grew in earnest, the air seemed to freeze.
And the wolf and the she-bear, of contrary mind, abhorring their task approached, looking grim. They sniffed him for measure, then, loathing his hide, growled their displeasure and dropped to their knees.
All night these glum attendants flanked his naked quaking form. The rising moon drew dreams in gray.
In time the man grew warm.

Morning swept through the glade in one broad stroke of the master’s brush, dappling the foliage with amber and rose. The pool was roused by the sweet pass of light. He opened his eye and the glade came alive:  into the whirlpool of life a thousand colors swam, chasing the scattering eddies of night. The magic of morning began.
Bluebird and goldfinch descended in rings, primaries clashing with robin and jay. Dollops of sun, repelled by their wings, spattered anew on the palette of day. Banking as one, the hues struck away.
There was a crowd.
And in this crowd that oddity sat, its chin on its chest, its rear pointing west. Its forepaws lay leaning, upturned and at rest. ***** and blood messed its muzzle and breast. Passed overnight. Or perhaps only dozed…tendril by tendril, claw by claw, the crowd decompressed:  the ring slowly closed.
And the stranger cried out and shifted his seat. His eyes sought his feet—rounding the arches, and topping the toes, the tall grass was questing. The little brute froze.
And the fauna took pause, and the flora went slack. Leaves followed talons, stems followed claws. Hooves tromped on paws as the crowd drifted back.
Not a breath taken. Not a move made. Stillness, like fog, enveloped the glade.
Now the grass tugged his feet, now the sea of jade splayed—left hand and right, the slender shafts reared. Gaining momentum, blade followed blade. The green field was torn till a deep swath appeared. The swath hurtled west, reflecting the sun. A hundred yards distant it died. Once more the grass stood, its tips spreading wide. The swath, born again, repeated its run.
Plain was the message, and clearly conveyed. The newcomer gawked. Confusion ensued.
The tall blades were swayed by the pulse of the glade.
But the swath was not renewed.
Something tiny bounced by. He ventured a peek, barely rolling an eye.
A chocolate sparrow, with pinfeathers black, popped past an ankle and paused to look back. The bird cocked its head, rocked in place, hopped ahead. It fluttered. It freaked. It glared and stopped dead. Vexed to its limit, it burst into flight.
The sitting thing watched till it passed out of sight.
Now a breeze bent his back, picked him half off his stern. The wind, done its best, grew flustered at last. It trailed to the west, thrilling lilies it passed. It wound round the willows and didn’t return.
So the fauna repaired to the live oak’s shade.
A strange kind of stupor fell over the glade.
From deep in the wood came a shape through the trees—a pronghorn, perhaps, or an elk swift and sure. But up limped a moose, a flyport with fur, low in the belly and wide at the knees. Wizened he was, scarcely able to see. Neither vision, nor vigor, nor velvet had he. He hobbled abreast, then groveled or died, his nose facing west, his tail flung aside.
The brute merely glazed.
But the glade was unfazed.
Those long shafts reshuffled. A tense moment passed.
The ominous shadows of badgers were cast. Three left their holes, as if to attack. They pedaled like moles and the stranger jumped back. He stumbled, fell flailing, and, kicking his guide, threw out his arms and tumbled astride. First he stepped on his tail, then he stepped on his pride. The moose bellowed twice and shook side to side while the little pest clung to his high, homely hide.
And the old moose unbent to his knees by degrees. He reeled like a drunk down the path of the breeze. Together they lurched through a break in the trees. And all morning long, and on through the day, both beggar and bearer would buckle and sway. The moose lost his temper, but never his way.
And the wind blew the sun to its deep ruby rest; the scrub, in obeisance, inclined to the west. Their slow taffy shadow in slinking would seem to slip round the rocks like a snake in a dream.
And the sun became a beacon, and the underbrush a stream. The wide Earth took their weight in stride, and the wind named him Hero.

                                               WORLD

When the sun was low the old moose began to stumble, at last limping to a halt beside a swift river lined with stunted pines. He’d half-expected a somewhat graceful dismount, but Hero, dug in like a tick, wasn’t about to let go. The moose knelt until his joints objected, shimmied, bucked, and with a sudden whirl sent the little bother flying.
Hero scraped himself out of the dirt and looked up forlornly. The ancient moose, his good eye gone bad, glared a long minute before hobbling away, his bony **** rocking with dignity, his scraggly tail fighting off imaginary flies.
Hero managed a few steps and dropped, staring in disbelief as the moose disappeared between half-frozen pines. He remained on his knees for the longest time, his jaw hanging, waiting for the moose—waiting for anything to show. At last a ruckus to his left snapped him out of it. His head ratcheted around.
Fifteen feet off the bank, three screaming gulls were dancing on an immense stone outcropping, fighting over a rapids-tossed sockeye. Hero was instantly famished. He wobbled to his feet and stumbled twice wading out, only regaining his balance by leaning against the current while rapidly wheeling his arms. The shrieking gulls reluctantly backed off as he stepped in slow-motion through the rushing water. Hero lunged at the slapping fish, cracked an ankle on the rock, and hopped around howling with both hands holding his shin. One foot was as good as none in the surging water. He went right under. Before he knew it he was being swept downriver.
This was glacial meltwater, so cold he quickly lost all sensation. Hero swallowed a mouthful and surfaced fighting for life; too disoriented to combat the current, too numb to realize his waving arm was striking something solid. That solid something turned out to be a swirling clump of rotted birches tangled up in scrub. He embraced one of these trunks as the mass slammed against isolated rocks, kicked his feet wildly, and somehow hauled himself aboard. The raft ricocheted rock to rock until repeated impacts sent it spinning. Giddy from the whirling and soaking, he clung freezing to the trees, retching continuously while the river roared in his ears. Through spray and tears he made out only cartwheeling fragments of the world.
But then the river was widening, its fury dissipating. The raft was approaching the sea. Hero gasped as the seemingly boundless Pacific swallowed the broad red belly of the sun. And as he spun he was treated to a panoramic, breathtaking spectacle:  the great indigo ocean with its slow traffic of driftwood and ice—voiced-over by the dismal calls of foraging gulls, and broken rhythmically by intermittent glimpses of the river’s rocky banks growing farther and farther apart. Whirling as it went, the dying man’s soul was taken by the sea.

At the 59th Parallel in winter, the Pacific coast plays host to numberless floes and minor bergs orphaned from Alaskan coastal glaciers. Hero cruised into a watery gridlock on a boat of ice-glazed birches, one bit of flotsam among the rest.
The cold wouldn’t let him move, wouldn’t let him breathe, wouldn’t let him think. He lay supine, feet crossed and hands clasped, terrified that to budge was to roll. An ice patina grew over the tangled trees like a white fungus—this growth soon webbed his fingers and toes, speckled his chest and thighs, glazed his hair and face, danced and disintegrated with his breath’s tapering plumes.
Floes and frozen-over debris tended to group with passing collisions; Hero’s married birches bit by bit accrued a mostly-submerged tangle of trunks and branches, all becoming fast in a creeping ice cement. Night came on just as resolutely, until land was only a flat black memory. The raft moved silently over the deep, still accepting the occasional gentle impact. And the floes became thicker and wider in a freezing doldrums; soon the proximate sea was all a broken field of packed ice, bobbing infinitesimally with the planet’s pulse.
Long ghostly strands of fog came striding over the torn ice field. They leaned this way and that, their mourners’ skirts tearing and patching and leaning anew. The ghosts were there to seal it:  their locked fingers and gray diaphanous wings were quickly becoming a wholly opaque descending shroud, its boundaries lost in the soughing wind.
Collisions came less and less. Darkness and silence, breaching some previously impenetrable barrier, began to take up residence in Hero’s chilling marrow. From his very center broke a weak little cry of refusal, of denial, as mind mustered frame in one desperate bid for freedom. His skin, frozen to the raft, peeled right off, and at that his inner brave succumbed. Hero’s smashed head arched back. His face contorted frightfully while the little lamp fluttered and paled within.
A raucous chorus slowly worked its way through the mist. It emerged a few hundred yards off—a tiny, terrified barking, growing in clarity as it grew in volume and urgency. It was a sound beacon. Hero strained eagerly, and when for one excruciating minute the beacon was cut off by a large passing body, was certain death had claimed him. Then it was back, and his heartbeat was quickening. He caught a heaving sound…something was moving his way down a wide tributary between floes. Hero could hear a gasping and snorting, accompanied by a hard slapping and splashing. The sounds vanished. In a moment the raft was rocked from below.
A sputtering muzzle blew salt in his eyes. A cold slimy flipper flapped across his chest and slapped about his face. The fur seal barked directly in his ear. Whiskers raked his dead cheek. The seal barked again.
Back below the surface it slipped. Hero listened anxiously as the splashing sound retreated whence it came.
The seal swam off perhaps a hundred feet and began barking hysterically.
From much farther off came a profusion of answering barks.
The seal swam back to Hero’s raft, circling and calling, circling and calling, while the responders approached en masse.
Now a sallow beam could be seen cutting through the fog. Several more showed vaguely along a plane yawing with some huge, barely discernible object.
A herd of northern fur seals burst into sight, barking madly, beating through the ice. They converged on Hero’s raft, really bellowing now.
Those odd yellow beams came in pursuit, and soon were close enough to eerily illuminate a gigantic wooden vessel parting the ice. The seals barked ferociously. Whenever the vessel leaned away, those nearest Hero’s raft would absolutely howl.
The fog deepened, condensed, crystallized, and then the collective light of a dozen lanterns was playing over a low, listing nightmare. Hero could hear the shouts of many aggressive men, but the waterborne seals, rather than scatter, boarded the ice and redoubled their din, fighting their way onto his quickly mobbed raft.
The sealers hurled serrated spears even as they clambered down rope ladders. When these men reached the ice the seals snapped and gnashed madly, refusing to be dislodged. The sealers lost all composure with the thrill of the hunt:  wielding clubs, spears, and hatchets—sometimes using iron bludgeons or any old utensil handed down—they crushed skulls, dragged carcasses, hooked animals still spurting and bleating. Clinging though he was, Hero was flabbergasted by the way the slipping and scampering men went about their butchery, hacking and smashing more with passion than with precision. But not a single seal attempted to flee—throughout the carnage they barked all the louder, egging on their slayers, carcass by carcass drawing the impassioned sealers to Hero’s ice-locked raft.
It was all so hazy and macabre. Hero’s eyes rolled back, and the next thing he knew he was sitting hunched on the vessel’s sopping deck. Two men were rubbing his limbs while another poured warm water down his back. He looked around in shock. The very notion of a boat containing more than one or two individuals—a sort of floating tribe—was way beyond his ken; so to see it, to have it come looming out of nothingness, was an experience almost supernatural.
He remembered some of those fur-covered men force-feeding him mouthfuls of halibut and seal fat, and he recalled a small group standing around him, shouting words that made no sense at all. After that he had a very vivid memory of their angry little chief repeatedly punching him while hollering one angry little word over and over and over. Hero couldn’t make out his inquisitor’s face, for the large feather-lined hood quite engulfed the man’s head, yet he could see those quick eyes flash as they caught the oil lamps’ light. Finally this man stopped boxing Hero’s ear. He stared hard. In these remaining decades of the tenth century it was fully within his power to administer as he saw fit—he could have ordered Hero’s immediate execution and not a man of his crew would have objected. He hesitated only because there wasn’t a hint of resistance in his prisoner’s pinched and frightened eyes. He leaned forward, studying the wound that all but split Hero’s face in two before grunting, raising his right arm, and yanking down its seal hide sleeve. Attached to the stump of his forearm was a primitive prosthesis consisting of a thick oak cap strapped to the arm with lengths of gut, and, hammered squarely into the center of that cap, a broad, cruelly hooked blade chiseled from a narwhal’s tusk. He held this obscenity in front of Hero’s eyes, traced the face’s deep diagonal rift, and once more demanded his captive’s identity. Hero then vaguely remembered being dragged along a tilting deck and thrown into the ship’s tiny hold. He retained a strong mental image of landing in a place of musty odors and dank projections.
There came a soft scuffling in the darkness, and presently a blind and exceedingly old woman felt her way to his side, mumbling as she approached. Her speech was comprised not of words; it was rather a running gibberish of cooing vowels and clucking consonants. The old woman was as mad as her circumstances; sick with sea and solitude, bedeviled by age and confinement. She sat cross-legged, patting her withered palms up his arm until she came to his face. Her strange mumbling soliloquy rose and fell as her bony fingers daintily explored the newly opened wound. Hero let his head fall back in her lap. A pair of hands like emaciated tarantulas scurried through the filth and tiny bodies until they came upon an old otter’s pelt bag that held her secrets. The woman loosened the bag’s cord and extracted an assortment of herbs, sniffing each in succession. She then scooped a handful of blubber from a bowl made of a previous occupant’s skull, kneaded the selected herbs into the blubber, and commenced gently massaging the wound, clucking and cooing while the black rats watched and waited.
For nine interminable days Hero remained in that cold, stinking compartment, rocking back and forth between life and death. The old woman never gave up on him. She clung to him during his seizures, rubbed his limbs vigorously when his blood pressure fell. She gathered various accumulated skins and, using woven strands of her own long hair, sewed him a multilayered, body-length wraparound with arm sleeves and very deep pockets, working by touch with a needle formed of a cod’s rib. By this same method she was able to fashion a pair of heavily lined snug-fitting moccasins. The old woman made him eat; she masticated the cod and halibut their keepers pitched into the hold, then shoved the results down his throat with a long gnarly forefinger. She called into his screaming nightmares, talking him out of sleep and back into their foul little reality. Together they lowed in the dark, while the keel groaned along and the waves beat time.
At the end of those dark nine days his strength was restored, but not his mind. Once again he was taken on deck.
The vessel had reached a chain of remote wind-swept islands, rocky and treeless, naked except for patchy carpets of hardy grass. These islands stretched far to the west, shrouded in mist. The ship was making for the smallest; just a chip on the sea. When they reached depth for anchorage Hero was hustled into a rowboat and lowered over the side. He looked up, saw two men climbing down by rope. These men positioned themselves at the oars and slowly rowed toward the islet. Seated between them, Hero felt like a man being led to his execution. He snuck a peek. The rowers’ heads were lowered, their features completely obscured by the heavy feathered hoods; they had all the somberness of pallbearers. Not a word passed between them as they rigidly worked their oars:  the only sound was the dip-and-purl of wood in water. Hero looked away. Against his will, he found his eyes drawn to that rocky islet waiting in the fog.
Not a bird, not a sea lion, not a shrub. It was lonesome beyond imagination.
Upon landfall one of the men used a spear’s point to **** Hero ashore. While his companion steadied the boat, he removed a skin sack full of half-frozen halibut, followed by a few armloads of precious tinder. These articles he tossed at Hero’s feet. He resumed his place at the oars and, without looking back, used the blunt end of his spear to shove off.
Hero watched the boat moving away, watched the men climbing their ropes, watched the boat being hauled aboard. As the mysterious vessel receded he saw a number of those silent men standing at the stern, stolidly returning his stare. Their hooded forms grew smaller and smaller, finally becoming indistinct. The vessel was swallowed up in fog.
Hero looked around, at a desolate world of rock and drifting ice. In the sunless pools at his feet a few purplish, flaccid sea anemones were waving in a sickly phosphorescence; along the rocks ran a tattered quilt of wild grass and lichen. It was the end of the world. He began to pace in his anxiety, only to crumple bit by bit inside his furs. At last he just sat with his face in his arms and wept. When he could weep no more he raised his head and opened his red, swollen eyes.
There were gulls all around him, staring like statuary in a madman’s garden. Standing in their midst were auks and puffins and murres, absolutely spellbound, unable to lean away. The silence was broken only by a wild, fitfully pursing wind—a wind that seemed, eerily, on the verge of producing syllables. And on that wind a flock of terns was rising slowly, their beady eyes fixed on the lone sitting man. The terns watched as he trembled, and banked as he swooned.
Then, beating as one, they threw back their wings and blew into the sun.

There was a blaze.
Behind that blaze a pair of black, bug-like eyes met his and immediately withdrew. A man wrapped in caribou hides stood abruptly, drawing angry swarms of sparks.
The Aleut peered queerly into the icy Pacific, his craggy profile merging seamlessly with a jumble of rocks showing just beyond his shoulder. The man was very tall, closer to seven feet than to six, and thin almost to emaciation.
He was also a mute. Soon enough he would display a talent for communication through gutturals, but now his body language spoke louder than words. It told the shivering stranger that he was not only disliked—he was feared.
The islander removed the hides he’d piled on the sleeping man. He produced a bone awl and strategically pierced a caribou hide, draped the hide over the old woman’s handiwork, and ran a cord of tightly woven tendons crosswise through his made holes, knotting it at the bottom to create a kind of cloak. He then killed the fire, heaped wood, fish, and remaining hides into Hero’s arms, and led him to a tiny cove where his long skin canoe lay in the grass. This was not the one-man kayak used by his people for centuries, but an actual canoe modeled on the graceful vessels he’d observed under the control of northern coastal tribesmen. After dragging it into the water he perched Hero in the fore, placed the cargo in the middle, and stepped into the rear like a gaunt furry spider. The Aleut dug out a paddle and began pulling with smooth strokes of surprising muscularity, his black eyes trained on his quiet companion’s back.
So began their long island-hopping journey. They stepped the chain one stone at a time, living off the sea. But much as the islander disliked Hero’s vapid company, it was not in his nature to proceed expeditiously; his people, remote as they were, had learned to count not in days but in generations. Given this, the Aleut took his time. He showed Hero how to build shelters of skin and gut; during bad weather the two would sit on an island in utter silence while rain hammered on their stretched seal-intestine window. And one very clear night he pointed out constellations while attempting to demonstrate, using broad gestures, just how the brighter heavenly bodies were in perfect alignment with the Aleutians. Hero followed his guide’s gestures as a pet follows its master’s movements and, like a pet, soon became bored. The Aleut did not grow flustered. He grew ever more wary:  behind that granite, weather-beaten exterior squirmed a very primitive imagination. Superstitious as he was, the Aleut was almost certain Hero could read his mind. So one time, and one time only, he threw a searing look at the back of Hero’s bowed and listing head. After a long minute of vigorous thought-projection he shifted his gaze aside. The brute appeared to feel this shift, and gently turned his head. And both saw the ocean break rhythm, and watched as otters and sea lions surfaced, noted their progress, and slipped without tremor beneath the waves.
In spring the fogs lifted. The grimness gave way to serenity, a generous sun buttered the dappled sea. On the islands grass grew lushly. Wildflowers leapt on the color-starved eye.
And one day the islander’s nape itched. He turned to see a flock of arctic terns casually tracking them under a gorgeous, white-plumed sky. As the day progressed the terns came drifting high overhead, slowly but surely taking the lead.
The Aleut squinted against the sun. He’d never known these birds to pursue a westerly migratory pattern—the terns were distributing themselves into a rough wedge shape, much like geese on the wing.
For a while he let the flock be his guide. Then, to test his stars, he cunningly steered his canoe north. At once the wedge disintegrated. Not until he’d lowered his eyes and pulled purposefully to the west did the disrupted pattern reassert itself. He peered up timidly. The wedge was now in the shape of a perfect arrowhead.
Just so were the fates of mariners and aviators inextricably entwined. At night, once the Aleut had landed his canoe on the nearest pearl, the terns would light in a quiet circle and remain until sunrise. As the Aleut and Hero took to sea, the flock would quickly form that same authoritative pattern.
In time the Aleut paddled his companion clear to the westernmost islands of the Aleutian chain. His people had dwelt, even here, a thousand years and more, but no contemporary islander knew for certain what lay beyond. Legend told of an enormous land mass forever gripped by cold, where a cruel people waylaid innocent seafarers for barbaric sacrificial rites.
So here the islander paused. But even as he vacillated he noticed the terns were veering south.
If the Aleut had been able to curse aloud he would have been vociferous. He was being compelled to follow an even less desirable course—that of the unknown open ocean. Now he looked upon his passenger’s hunched back not with fear but with loathing. He took a deep breath, rolled his shoulders, and defiantly continued west. The wedge broke up immediately. The terns dive-bombed the canoe, whirled around the windmilling Aleut, tore skyward and hovered determinedly. Something huge broke surface behind them, but the Aleut was way too frayed to turn. He dropped his head, a beaten man, and began paddling south. Little by little the birds returned to formation.
The tiny canoe had no business going up against the mighty Pacific. It would soon have been swallowed and smashed, had not the terns veered in close formation whenever the distant sea appeared too rough. Once he’d lost his bearings the Aleut religiously followed their serpentine course.
The days began to warm.
Now the sea’s bounty all but leapt in the canoe.
It seemed the Aleut was forever catching the finest currents, practically sliding down a corridor entirely free of peril. In this manner he was able to safely navigate waters no such craft had mastered before.
They were proceeding south by southwest, awed children of a plenteous, generous sea. The going became easier by the day, the ocean heavier with cod.
Nights the Aleut drifted comfortably, but a lifetime of wariness made him wake off and on. He’d slowly rise to find Hero sitting quietly under the stars, and soon he’d see, pallid in moonlight, a large body neatly pleating the ocean’s surface. The shape would precede them a while, only to vanish without a ripple.
All this strangeness kept the Aleut’s heart in a whirl, though he took pains to maintain his poise.
To allay his fear he kept a flat black stone planted squarely between them. It was his oldest treasure; an oddity he’d taken off the body of a mauled Tlingit woman when he was a child. Who she was, and how she’d come by the stone, were mysteries far beyond him, for no such piece had ever been known to Aleut or Inuk.
The stone was smooth and had been worked perfectly round. Bright yellow specks were scattered about its dull black face.
Long ago someone had etched a quaint and clumsy rune on that flat black surface—it was the crude, universal symbol for sun:  a broad circle surrounded by several rays. When the stone was rubbed against a pelt it possessed the curious property of growing quite warm and bright in the rune’s grooves, while the surface remained cool and dull.
This stone, both friend and overlord, had always “spoken to him”. It caused him to become restless when it was time to move on, and allowed him to relax when a destination had been reached. In this way he’d come to the familiar islet and discovered the unconscious little man. Just so:  the stone, he was sure, was responsible for making him “feel bad” as he watched the stranger shiver, and “feel better” once he’d built him a life-saving fire from the small pile of tinder he’d found nearby.
By now, however, the Aleut was wholly disenchanted with his stone, and deeply regretted having done its mysterious bidding. Never before had he been so long from sight of land, and never before had he felt so very, very small. The unimagined immensity of the Pacific was really starting to get to him when, after all their while at sea, a gray, seductive haze broke the horizon. They had reached another chain of islands, an Asian chain, the dark and smoky Kurils. Here a cold current kept the climate cool and foggy, and the chill, along with the prevalence of otter and seal, made him feel almost at home.
But this place gave him the creeps; he was a stranger, a trespasser somewhere sacred. There was a looming quality to the island mountains that made him extraordinarily aware of his transience, his pettiness, his puniness. He grew more and more cautious, sure their progress was being monitored—he could have sworn he saw wraiths in the trees, and wolves padding warily in the brush. The big islands looked on breathlessly. All along the rocky cliffs, thousands of auks and puffins followed the canoe in dead silence, their heads turning simultaneously, their countless tiny eyes peering redly through the fog. As the weeks passed, the Aleut’s anxiety was manifested in tics and sighs, and he’d cringe each time the crimson sun sank behind those black volcanic summits. In his imagination the mountains would rise right out of the sea, as though to pluck him. But the islands, in all their dignity, would always refuse to acknowledge so meek a stranger, and return their eyes to sea. The Aleut would hang his head, and timidly paddle by.
Then for days and days he pulled his weary canoe west—through a strait parting two mighty islands not part of the chain, and thence across a sea that was a warm, enticing bath. Spring had come to the East Asian coastal waters, and the Ainu, alone and in groups, were venturing deeper in search of increasing bounty. The Aleut, absorbed in his thoughts of sweet climate and bitter fate, was unaware they’d been spotted.
This first meeting between strangers of different worlds was a brief and awkward one. A lone Ainu fisherman, seeing the Aleut come paddling out of the unknown, dropped his net and turned to stone. The Aleut, for his part, instinctively froze with his body turned half-away to make the leanest target possible. Their stares locked. Never had the Aleut seen a face so heavily bearded, and never hair so fair. The Ainu began banging on his bronze catch pail. Other fishers soon appeared from the north and south, effectively cutting off the canoe. The Aleut caressed his stone and looked to the sky. The wedge had vanished. He put down his head and paddled for all he was worth.
With the word out, uncountable fishing craft appeared out of the blue and broke into hot pursuit, their pilots determined to force the canoe ashore.
Suddenly they were in sight of land, and the sea was absolutely riddled with watercraft. A train of small boats cast off from the mainland, even as a posse of two-man coracle-like tubs began to surround the battered skin canoe, their inhabitants calling back and forth in astonishment at the sight of these dark, savage newcomers. But the pursuing little coastal men, banging excitedly on the sides of their boats, were not Ainu. They had very straight black hair, prominent cheekbones, and strangely slanted eyes. And their speech, oddly marvelous as it was, was a rapid series of coos, chirps, and barks. Their boats formed a tight semi-circle around the canoe, forcing the Aleut to approach the mainland. The little men banged their boats maniacally, with more joining in as the canoe neared shore.
A bit farther south was a natural harbor swarming with fishing vessels of every description. As the canoe was forced into this harbor, people along the rocky coast began banging whatever they could get their hands on, until the air was filled with their lunatic percussion.
Tiny brown men came running along a soft yellow cliff overlooking the harbor, gesturing wildly. The canoe was squeezed between a chain of tubs and the shore, and, as it slowed, the tempo and ferocity of the banging decreased accordingly. When the canoe came to a halt the banging and shouting stopped. Hero creaked to his feet. The first North American to set foot on Asian soil stepped out shakily.
There followed the profoundest silence imaginable.
A second later it was as if a dam had burst.
Hundreds of hysterical, yammering voices erupted from hundreds of hysterical, clinging men and women. Hero was spun around, jostled about, handed along. He stared into their astounded, pinched little faces, and the sun, pulsing between their heads as he was turned, repeatedly stabbed his eyes. There came an excited outburst and frantic splashing which could only have been the Aleut’s violent demise, and then Hero was somehow limping alongside a primitive fishing village, blindly following a narrow dirt path that hugged the yellow cliff’s base. The warm spring sun caught the dust as he shambled. He rounded a bend and stopped.
Half a dozen children stood in his way, too fascinated to run. A chatter and scuffle rose behind him. He looked back to see that he was now in the midst of a small crowd of these children, and that more were running up with cries of amazement.
A stone struck his shoulder. As Hero turned another glanced off his chest.
A moment later he was being pelted from all sides, and the giggles and gasps had become something wildly unreal. He dropped to his knees in a hail of hurled rocks, covered his head with his arms, and slithered up the path on his belly.
A new voice broke in; an older, authoritative voice.
The children scampered off squealing.
Hero, shaken to his feet, found himself face to face with a diminutive, shouting, incomprehensible old man. The old man threw his arm around Hero’s waist and, jabbering all the while, led him to a secondary path cut into the cliff’s face. This path sloped gently upward over the waves. Together they picked their way to a place maybe halfway up, where the cliff’s face was honeycombed with natural alcoves and dug-out caves. Most of these spaces were used as one-man shelters; a few, cut deeper in the earth, as family hives. Strange gabbing people slid out of these holes like worms, reaching, but the little old man, who was evidently a little old man of some stature, embraced his find possessively and shouted them back inside.
The path narrowed as they climbed.
At its summit spread the upscale end of the neighborhood. Hero was led to a hovel nestled amid dozens of similar hovels, all scattered around a dainty stream wending between patches of stunted vegetation.
The old man’s place was basically a one-room hut fashioned of earth and salvaged boat hulls, with a slender side-yard surrounded by dry, dusty hedges. But inside it was clean and tidy, with rice paper partitioning and, built into the far earthen wall, a miniature stone fireplace. The old man sat his guest in the exact center of the room. There he fed him scraps from his bowl, using long sticks to pluck out bits of fish and clumps of tiny, starchy white pellets.
He studied the brute closely, watched him chew, walked round and round him. He poked here. He pinched there.
And that night he lit a fire on his crushed-shell hearth.
Hero curled up on a mat where the gossip of flames could reach him. Nearby, at his delicate wicker table, the old man sat in semi-darkness, illuminated only from the waist down.
But his eyes were alive. They spat and darted as they reflected the fire’s light, and, when at last they’d begun to sputter, his scratchy little voice came pattering out of the dark, muttering something vile and oddly modulated, sometimes in a whisper, sometimes in a gathering snarl.
Hero feigned slumber, unable to ignore those paired ominous flashes. Still, the room was cozy, and the fire warm, and the play of light and shadow kicked sleep in his eyes.

In the morning he woke in the old man’s side-yard, his head pounding, a rusty iron clamp securely fastened around his neck. This clamp was attached to the outermost link of a crude three-foot chain, and the link at the other end to a long stake driven into eight inches of solid rock. The chain and stake, like the clamp, were hammered of local iron. The clamp was too tight for comfortable swallowing, the chain too short to make standing possible. Hero could, however, spread out on his chest and stretch an arm to a low row of hedges. By parting the tangled undergrowth he had a limited view of the fishing village below, and of the harbor beyond. As the days passed he was able to tweak himself a view-space discernible only from his peculiar vantage. He accomplished this by gently breaking small branches strategically, then guiding their interrupted growth with the utmost tenderness. It was his secret garden.
He had no memory—none whatsoever—of being staked here. Obviously the old man hadn’t set this up overnight. Hero’s mind prodded timidly…how many others had been chained to this spot, and why?
But over the subsequent weeks and months he went beyond caring. Each day was the same:  just after dawn the old man would storm into the tiny side-yard swinging his reed whip wildly. The lashings were savage and unremitting. The old man, except for his eyes, would be mute. Only his whip need speak. And the snap of his reed had but one message:  when you see this whip you go down, and you go down immediately.
The naked savage, scarred head to foot, learned to go prostrate on the moment. Even so, the old man couldn’t resist the temptation to indulge in the occasional good old, all-out thrashing. And after each session he would toss the prisoner a vile mess of dead fish and rotting leftovers.
Hero lived like this for many months, lost in a confused world of pain and anticipation. Perversely, he came to look forward to the bite of that whip, for, whether he flogged him in passion or just for sport, the old man was always sure to make it personal. It seemed their relationship might go on forever.
But one day there was a great commotion in the sleepy little fishing village. Hero parted the leaves and beheld a small train of oblong coaches at rest near the harbor. Large oxen yoked in pairs lolled between the carriages, immune to the clamor around them. There were dark shaggy horses and colorfully dressed Bactrian camels. The horses and camels were tethered in the rear, but were occasionally paraded around the carriages by little men wielding long painted bamboo poles. The whole affair was exotic and mesmerizing, eccentric and profane. Hero watched all day in amazement, infected by the hubbub, though he was totally mystified by the crowd’s fascination on the carriages’ far side.
And late that afternoon he saw the old man come walking out of that crowd, talking heatedly with another man. The stranger was shorter and broader than the old man, with long stringy hair and long stringy mustaches. He saw them climbing the path, saw them crawl inside a hole lashing furiously. They were lost from view for a minute, then popped up big as life. Hero glowed and curled up eagerly as they approached.
The old man and stranger came into the narrow side-yard still arguing. The old man grabbed Hero by the hair and twisted until he was facing the newcomer.
The stranger had oily, porous skin, and a round but grave countenance. His highly slanted eyes were bright and restless. He studied Hero’s mutilated face with keen interest before borrowing the old man’s reed. When Hero scraped at his feet he grunted and returned the reed.
The stranger pulled out something shiny and hefted it in his hand. He then raised his other hand while considering Hero, as though weighing him too. The old man’s eyes glinted, and for an instant his expression became grotesquely servile. The stranger and old man, facing, nodded curtly in unison. The stranger dropped the shiny thing onto the old man’s itching palm. The old man whipped Hero frantically before taking a small ax to the chain. A few hard blows split a link, the broken link was bent back by the tool’s shaft, and the prisoner was at last released.
The old man handed the stranger a short hempen rope. The stranger bowed deeply. He then tied an end of the rope through one of the remaining links and began dragging Hero along. Hero’s hands sought the old man, who kicked and cursed him all the way to the path. The three stumbled single-file to the bottom. The old man waved his arms and shouted hysterically, trotting behind until he ran out of breath. But he got in a final kick and, before he came to a gasping halt, managed to lash Hero once for old time’s sake, and to spit on him twice for luck.

There were five carriages; a long one in the center hitched to four oxen, and two smaller coaches in the front and rear with a pair of oxen on each. The carriages were old and battered, built of splitting wood slats and rusted iron braces. Various hides, spare wheels, and a hundred odds and ends were tied to the sides and roofs. Hero’s new master, using him as a ram, shoved him through the crowd to the long carriage. He hauled him up the single wood step and watched the crowd’s reaction. Children hid behind mothers, mothers hissed and jeered, men spat in that smashed, disgusting face.
Satisfied, Hero’s master twisted the rope tighter and dragged him through the hide flap that served as the carriage’s rear wall.
A strange ruckus began at their entrance.
Inside the carriage were bulky shapes and quirky movements, yet the immediate and overwhelming impression was one of unbelievable stench. Hero, instantly covered with flies, was kicked and shoved down a foot-wide aisle. The carriage’s walls were riddled with black flecks of old dried blood, the floor coated with standing *****, a variety of small carcasses, and some clinging, indefinable slime. But the living contents of this hell were so horrifying, and so unexpected, that Hero at once dropped to his knees. Observing this, master grabbed a whip off the wall and lashed him along the floor.
A number of bamboo cages lined either side of the carriage, each four feet high, four feet wide, and three feet deep. In the first cage to their left, a quadruple amputee dangled in a leather harness in a cloud of flies, jealously gnawing a chicken carcass balanced on his belly. The second cage held a man who had been burned over ninety per cent of his body, and the third a middle-aged woman with no eyes or tongue, her head shaved. The next cage housed a fully grown black leopard, its bright eyes fixed on the horrified newcomer. Then an empty cage, and finally a cage containing a demented man whose long yellow nails were busily raking a face deeply scarred and bleeding.
The first cage against the opposite wall held two girls rolling in their own excrement. Siamese twins unable to part, they had developed a unique method of locomotion, and now executed a three-quarters cartwheel in Hero’s direction, their mangled, severely bitten hands attempting to reach him through the bars. In the cage next to theirs a naked dwarf glowered menacingly, his eyes following coldly as Hero’s master shoved him down the narrow aisle, occasionally pausing to lash a cage. The hissing and howling increased as each prisoner beheld the new neighbor.
The third cage held an intensely sick adult Bornean sun bear, so confined it was entirely unable to move. Its hide was a patchwork of scraggly fur and grayish skin, glistening with odd eruptions. It rolled its sunken eyes in Hero’s direction, its muzzle twitching feebly.
The next cage contained a man who was frightfully diseased. Broad fungal patches covered his face and limbs, terminating in waxy folds that dangled like a rooster’s wattles. Welling sores spotted his chest and back. His eyes were bugged and sallow; his lower lip drooped below his chin. He barked wetly at Hero’s passing legs.
The second-to-last cage housed a rare, completely hairless Chinese albino, and the last cage a very tall, skeletal woman. The albino snapped at Hero while repeatedly banging his head against the cage. The woman hissed and coiled like a snake, her spine arching amazingly.
Master hauled Hero to the empty cage on his left, swung its door open with his foot, and forced him to his knees by pushing down with all his weight. He kicked and punched until Hero had been squeezed inside, then shut and secured the wide bamboo door.
Master inched his way back down the carriage, hammering the **** of his whip on each cage as he passed. There was a glimpse of daylight as he lifted the flap.
Once he’d departed, the carriage grew eerily silent.
Hero cautiously turned his head. Less than a foot away, the black leopard was frozen in place, one paw waving hypnotically in his face. The beast’s fangs were bared, its ears straight back, its eyes glistening. Hero turned ever so slowly, until he was looking into the eyes of the demented man in the final cage. The man cocked his head quizzically. A second later he was screaming his lungs out in a bizarre downward spiral.
At once the carriage erupted. The freaks shrieked and scrabbled, the leopard spun in place. Directly across the aisle, the albino hurled himself against the bars of his cage. He batted his face with his fists, threw back his head, and just howled and howled and howled. The snake woman curled even tighter, her long scrawny legs entwined behind her head.
Hero sat with breath held, absolutely silent, absolutely motionless. He very, very slowly closed his eyes.

Later that night the flap was flung high. The menagerie came alive as master, weirdly illuminated by moonlight, slowly made his way down the aisle carrying a skin sack oozing blood. He stopped at each cage to toss in a dying chicken and a handful of smelt.
When he reached Hero’s cage he looked down thoughtfully.
He extracted a quivering chicken and held it above the cage so that blood dripped on the brute’s deeply pleated forehead. Hero lowered his eyes. Master’s face darkened. He smashed the bird against the cage, over and over, a vein throbbing in his temple. Finally he hissed and displayed the limp chicken high over the albino’s head. The albino yelped and kicked, thrusting his hand up between the bars and jerking it back to lick away the blood rolling down his forearm.
Master eyed Hero coldly before pointedly dropping the chicken into the albino’s searching hands.
Master hissed again. He slowly made his way out.
Soon there was a commotion outside. The carriage rocked a bit before settling. Hero, turning in his cage to peek through a rift in the wood, saw horses being urged forward. He could hear men shouting. The carriage rocked again. He looked up and saw the gibbous moon suspended in mist. For just a second something wedge-shaped cut across its soft white face.
But then the oxen were grunting, the wheels had been freed, and the horses drawn abreast. Master’s lash spat left and right, and the show proceeded…west.

                                              MA­STER

She was very round and very small, with very short, very shaggy black hair. Her arms bore the scars of numerous bites from beast and man, and around her neck ran long wheals from a particularly savage owner. Hero, having spent the better part of the morning watching master storm in and out of a strange screaming house, now watched him drag the little round woman through the dirt. For a while he listened to the song of his master’s lash, waiting for the woman to break. But there was never a whimper.
It had been a difficult transaction for master, and an altogether difficult morning. For hours he’d paced up and down the main carriage, alternately murmuring affectionately into, and lashing at, each cage he visited. The sun bear, long dead and stuffed, had been taken outside for barter. It had soon been returned.
Master had lingered over Hero’s cage for a good while, staring critically. He’d begun shouting, and three of his men had burst in through the flap, unlatched the demented man’s cage, and dragged him out by the feet for trade, master personally stomping on his torn and groping hands.
And now master was kicking and shoving the little woman down the aisle as his men restrained her by the hair and throat. Upon master’s command these men stripped her naked and commenced pinching and slapping while making threatening faces and mocking noises. The freaks sat right up in their cages.
The woman looked as though she’d fainted:  her arms were lax, her eyes rolled up. Her whole face seemed to purse, and her body, head to toe, began to run blue. Her fingers quivered, arched, and clawed—the woman was self-asphyxiating. Master fairly leaped with delight while the cages rocked around him. He had the men slap her awake. Once she was fully conscious they stuffed her into the demented man’s old cage next to Hero’s.
Master then looked in eagerly, one to the other, his hands balled into fists. The woman buried her odd round face in her forearms as she squeezed herself into her cage’s deepest corner. Hero gazed indifferently and went back to his peephole.
Master exploded. He smacked and kicked the cages over and over, swore up and down, ran the shaft of his whip back and forth against the heavy bamboo bars. Eventually he calmed somewhat. He stared coldly at Hero, made a ***** smile, and spat right in his eyes. A tense minute passed. Master slowly made his way outside.
Hero automatically relaxed. Across the aisle the albino ****** his face between his cage’s bars to sniff the newcomer. The leopard, bobbing rhythmically, emitted a high-pitched squeal that gradually descended to a steadily throbbing growl.
Hero looked the stranger over. Once she’d lowered her hands he saw that her eyes were crossed, her jaw slack, her face as round as the full moon. He looked closer. There were scars all over her throat and arms:  plainly, the small round woman had been treated very badly. Hero instinctively slid a foot between the bars; the woman cried out and scrunched even deeper. Across the aisle the albino quickly extended an arm. Without knowing why, Hero turned on him. The albino flinched, his eyes tearing into Hero’s. A second later he was stamping his feet and grinning wildly. Hero went back to his peephole.
Next morning master and two of his men dismantled the bamboo walls separating Hero’s and the woman’s cages. They bound the frames with broad leather bands, making a single cage of the two.
A common door was fashioned and secured. Master used his broad blade to shear away Hero’s rags. The men hunched around the long cage expectantly.
The naked couple backed away. Master was instantly exasperated—he shouted, lashed furiously, stamped and screamed, jabbed a broken shaft between the bars with malevolent intent, whirled and hurled the shaft at nothing. The carriage’s inmates went out of their minds. At master’s bellowed command a man scurried outside, returning with a long rope of woven leather strands. Master opened the cage and, applying all his weight, pinned Hero and his new mate in an awkward embrace while his men tied them together.
Again master and his men bent over the long cage to watch.
When Hero realized his predicament he made a desperate attempt to reach his peephole.
The men, misreading his struggles, babbled and cheered, but master threw up his hands. He then, through gesture, ordered his men to drape a number of hides over the long cage. Once these hides were in place he very quietly bent to one knee and placed an ear against the cage. After a while he cursed and rose to his feet. He shook the cage and stormed out, whipping and kicking the howling inmates.
In the semi-darkness the man and woman quit fighting their bonds.
A muffled patter began on the hide-covered roof.
Rain, as always, had a calming effect on the carriage’s occupants, causing the freaks and beasts to slip, one by one, into lethargy or slumber. Under such a spell, the attainment of master’s goal was inevitable.
It was a coupling both innocent and vile, without passion or celebration. Occasionally the freaks would surface, register their excitement by shrieking, shaking their cages, or otherwise clamoring…but very quickly the air would stifle them, weighing their heads and confusing their impulses. The atmosphere grew heavier by the minute. And, when night rolled over the carriages, the rain came down in sheets.

Leaning ******* the woman’s cage, master slipped his gnarly hand between the bars and slowly rubbed her belly in a counter-clockwise motion, his sinister features soft in the candle’s light. And he told, in nonsensical cooing whispers, of a lovingly secure and impossibly prosperous future.
How large and promising that belly had become! And how wise was he, the cunning and aggressive master, in his far-reaching business decisions. He turned his affection to the motionless gaping brute; stroked the battlefield of its face, tossed in another lizard. Master rubbed his palms together. From now on it was extra lizards daily, for both the woman and her mate. He remarked, with only passing interest, his star player’s continuing indifference. They didn’t know each other, didn’t need each other.
There’d been months of shows on the road now, broken only recently by this sensible rejoining of the mates at conception.
Hero’s horrible disfigurement was unquestionably top draw; he was a guaranteed crowd pleaser at every stop. So now master looked him straight in the eyes and smiled. He held the reeking candle high. The carriage was absolutely silent. Master smiled again, rose to his feet, tiptoed away.
Hero watched him retreat until the flap had fallen. He returned to his peephole, saw master round the rear of the carriage and slowly crunch by. For a time he could see nothing but the half-shapes of junipers bathed in starlight. There was a tentative movement to his right and a large shape came to obstruct his view.
The horse stood for a minute in profile. It slowly brought its head to rest against the carriage, applying its eye to the peephole. Hero froze. The two remained fixed, eyeball to eyeball, while a breeze played odd tunes on the outer wall’s hanging paraphernalia. The horse’s big dark eye rolled nervously. A long moment passed. Slowly the horse backed off. It stood uncertainly for a while, staring at the peephole. Then it quietly moved away.

Master kicked the cages one by one, left hand and right, as he slowly made his way down the aisle. Into each cage he delivered a personalized warning in passing—a growl, a hiss, a bark—but he was quickly losing control. Animal electricity hopscotched the carriage, cage to cage, ceiling to floor, front to rear and back again. Master froze. Much more of this excitement, he feared, could seriously agitate the woman—with grave consequences for master.
She was splayed on her back, in labor’s throes, her ankles and wrists bound to the long cage. Hero had been removed to give her room, and now sat hunched atop the snake woman’s cage, two men holding him by the throat and legs.
Master gnashed and snarled, listening to the woman scream, watching her stupid round head bounce up and down and back and forth. He knew it! He’d been suckered, hoodwinked, scammed—ripped off like a common rube. The woman was too ******* to handle even something as natural as childbirth. Still…it was too late to second-guess himself—all these months he’d been patient—he’d been supportive and vigilant and now he would not be denied. He flogged one of the men to alleviate his tension.
The blue lady was very slowly, very dramatically arching her spine. Master wiped the sweat from his eyes. When the bars were pleating her big round belly, her shoulders began drumming on the straw-strewn floor.
Master screamed one very colorful expletive.
A razor silence came over the carriage. Not a body moved or breathed.
At last two men tiptoed around their purpling master and leaned into the cage. One obediently ****** a foot between the bars. He pushed ******* her right knee while using a hand to grip the left knee, spreading her legs wide. The other man drew a broad leather strap between her teeth. After lifting the woman’s head he pulled the strap behind her neck, knotted it to make a gag, and yanked a skin sack over her face. He looked up anxiously. Master licked his lips and nodded. The man made a fist and frantically punched the woman’s face until her muffled screams ceased. She moaned gently throughout her contractions.
Master genuflected, brought a spitting candle in tight, and took a deep breath. As he raised his hand the candle’s light bounced off his knife’s chipped and scored eleven-inch blade. Master swore and reached down carefully. He flicked his wrist twice and the menagerie went mad.

The child was a tremendous disappointment.
Master had eagerly anticipated an infant ******* and deformed; something embracing the best qualities of its parents. He had even designed a special cage that could be expanded by degrees as the spawn developed. There also remained the tantalizing option of a family display, though such an undertaking would require the eventual construction of a structure even larger than the cage its parents now shared. Master anguished over the logistics, knowing it would break his heart to have to cut one of his jewels’ throats just to make room for a growing child. Nights he would slowly pace the carriage with all the possessiveness of a jealous suitor, one hand maneuvering a sputtering candle, the other tenderly rapping his whip’s **** against each visited cage.
But the boy was a flawless specimen; a beautiful, undemanding baby. From the moment master angrily tossed the placenta he felt cheated, even betrayed. He grimaced as it peaceably took to its mother’s breast, despite the surrounding horrors. Master hated it, immediately and entirely. The ****** thing was so docile it was almost charming. He drew his knife and was just reaching down, when an overwhelming sense of dread shook him like a rat in the jaws of a mastiff. Sweat poured down his squat, pig-tailed nape. He knew he would live to regret it, but decided to not cut the child’s throat right away. It was the oddest feeling. His knife hand had trembled for the first time in his life, and he had found himself momentarily contemplating right and wrong at the outset of a perfectly simple and commonplace procedure. That was it, then. His business instincts were letting him know there was a good, albeit unknowable, reason to let the sweet baby live. Master left the carriage anxiously, muttering in his ambivalence.
The boy grew to embody his worst expectations. Not only was it a poorly oriented child, clinging to its father rather than its master almost from the moment of weaning, but it soon proved a lousy draw with the patrons. Those who paid to view the child dangling in its special cage inevitably departed unsatisfied, some vocalizing, strangely, an acute sense of shame. So once again master entered the carriage with his knife hand steady, and once again he exited trembling, his heart in his throat and his soul in a whirl. He whipped the dwarf savagely before leaving. What place conscience in the mind of a businessman?
Soon as the boy could walk, master put him to work fetching and feeding. But the brat was slothful in his chores, preferring to hang around his family’s cage while staring wistfully at his father. For their part, the parents were wholly disinterested. Master would fume while Hero gazed for hours out his peephole—even as the mother lolled, perpetually ill. Sometimes that accursed woman’s condition riled poor master to no end. She could teeter at death’s door for months at a time, her body changing hues to the fascination of customers, only to bounce back with a hardiness that was of interest to no one. But at the peak of her performances the blue lady could really hold a crowd. Master produced an entire outdoors extravaganza around her:  within concentric rings of raging torches his men would slowly strip her naked before wild audiences, then allow the dwarf and albino to take her while the leopard strained against a gaily festooned chain. Master circulated his crew through the crowds to encourage his patrons’ cult-like behavior of breath-holding and fainting. No getting around it:  the customers were crazy about her—village to village, master’s Bactrian vanguard’s colorful robes shouted her approaching fame. And Hero’s popularity continued to soar. Many were the nights when master, pacing the perimeter, wondered just what devilry could have produced the lovely boy.
Overall, Hero remained his master’s favorite conceit and hottest property. Part of the little brute’s appeal was, of course, his exoticness. And certainly the ugliness arising from his deformity was compelling…but there was a detachedness about him that fascinated every soul with a fistful of copper cash coins. Whether they ****** him, cudgeled him, or spat in his face, he remained unflappable, staring only at the aching sky. Though many would leave uneasy, master noted with deep satisfaction that they almost invariably returned.
The boy soon evinced an amazing affinity for animals. No matter how agitated an ox or horse became, the child could pacify it with one hand on a lowered brow. This was a source of endless fascination for the crew. Wagers were made. The boy was pitted against oxen whipped to a frenzy. But they would not harm him; they would rather go prostrate and take the lash. Master tried to work this knack into a viable act, but his patrons just weren’t buying. They wanted freaks.
When the lad was a mere five years old, master had him trained in the peripheral art of the pickpocket. The boy worked well alone, and had all the makings of a fine little flimflam artist. Master sighed, his chronic nightmares a thing of the past. As ever, his business instincts were guiding him well.
Then late one afternoon he found the boy squatting outside his parents’ cage. The boy had done the unthinkable:  he had deposited his day’s pickings at the feet of his father instead of bringing the ***** to master. Master flew into a rage and raised his whip to give the little traitor the lashing he deserved. But before he could deliver a single stroke his other hand shot to his chest and he staggered back against the albino’s cage. He blinked down at the boy, who regarded him steadily while scooping the plunder into a little pile.
From that day on the boy placed whatever he could get his hands on at his father’s feet. As time passed he became ever more adroit at thievery, growing into a youngster both admired and despised by master and his crew; admired because theft was a cinch for him, despised because they were all that much lighter in their possessions.
Now, for eleven long years the strange little train had bounced along, sometimes camping outside villages for months, occasionally pausing on connecting roads. The show traversed the heart of Manchuria, skirted the Gobi in the north, and so eventually crossed almost the entire width of Mongolia before proceeding north to the confluence of the rivers Yenisey and Ob’. Much silver and copper had come to master’s coffer, much fame to his name, but he now sat looking over a vast, unmapped Siberian wilderness. The mostly nomadic characters they’d been encountering spoke in tongues unfamiliar even to his personal valet-translator-accountant, and the tone of these nomads had been unmistakably hostile.
Master huddled surlily under a canopy of sopping hides. Night was falling hard during a merciless rain, the wind was picking up, and his supplies coach was bogged in a growing sea of mud. At that moment he accepted the whole end-of-the-line concept, and knew he wasn’t going anywhere but back. And when he got back he was going to shine! He jumped from the coach.
The earth took his weight for a heartbeat—and he was up to his chin in muck, splashing about on his hands and knees, sliding forward on his palms and toes. He did a belly flop into a rain-filled depression and churned to his feet with the devil in his eyes. Wallowing in mud and bile, master stomped to the supplies coach and kicked wildly at the stuck rear wheels.
Somewhere between kicks he lost it completely.
Master broke for his whip. One minute he was blindly lashing his men, the next he’d succumbed to a mindless ferocity. He thrashed about like a berserker; whipping the beasts, the coach, the very night. His men were scarcely able to move in all that mud, but their dread of his savagery kept them hopping. They gathered as one and shoved the coach recklessly; slipping, splashing, shouting. A minute later, three lay splayed underfoot, but the mired wheel had been freed.
Throughout all this the oxen had swayed nervously, while the horses softly tramped their hooves in place. Master had his men turn the oxen about until the rickety train was pointing dead east. He checked the hitches and personally applied the lash. The oxen didn’t budge. Master swore and wiped the rain from his eyes. He had the horses hitched ahead of the oxen, but they were even less obliging. Master flew into a spectacular rage. His men, fearing for their lives, ran liberally with the lash.
The swaying of oxen picked up until the entire train of carriages was rocking. Yet the oxen could not, would not be compelled, under any amount of prodding, to take an eastward step. Master looked around in exasperation.
The night had gone insane.
Horses were fighting hitches, oxen walking on fire.
Master cursed the rain and mud and lashed all the harder. His men, seeking to please, whipped maniacally until the horses and both lead oxen broke their hitches and bolted west. The men immediately embraced the rear oxen, but the hitches shattered and the beasts stormed off. The remaining horses blew it, kicking at everything and nothing.
Inside the long carriage all was chaos. The albino was neighing and screaming, the aged leopard spinning in its cage. Hero stared out his peephole, amazed at the blur of figures stumbling by in the rain.
A pair of clopping blows rattled the opposite wall. Three slats cracked. A tremendous impact, and a huge section collapsed. A thrashing, hysterical mare burst through the breach in a veil of rain.
The horse went mad, killing the albino and snake woman in a flurry of hooves. She fell ******* the near wall, crushing the cages. The leopard shot into the air like a rocket, slashed at the mare’s throat and vanished in the rain. The horse reared above the family cage. She was just coming down in a wheeling storm of hooves when something made her freeze. Her stare locked with Hero’s, and a second later her eyes were rolling in their sockets. The mare kicked crazily and came down ******* her left flank, smashing the long cage’s side. She whirled upright and leaped outside.
For a tense minute the family sat in the rubble, rain bombarding their eyes. Nothing in their years of captivity had prepared them for such a situation. But by the end of that minute the son had taken full command. He rolled onto his back, braced himself, and kicked his parents across the aisle, through the remnants of the opposing cage, and out of the carriage. They all fell about in the mud and rain. To the west, the mare stared back strangely as she splashed into the night. The boy wedged himself between his parents, threw his arms around them, and pushed with all his might. Their bodies found a common center of gravity. Fumbling drunkenly, the family staggered through the rain in the wake of the mare.

The boy was the natural leader.
Master’s innocent-looking little ex-student could quickly assess and exploit almost any situation. He did the foraging and the figuring, slept with one eye open and one fist ready. He got what he wanted by charm or by stealth, slipping off at nightfall, returning at daybreak with small slaughtered animals and chunks of dark peasant bread. He also pilfered any bauble or oddity he could get his paws on, to be placed reverently at his father’s mangled feet. Breadwinner and watchdog, he faithfully held the family together; a nuclear son. He sewed hardy feather-lined cloaks of reindeer hide, and turned a cache of marmot pelts into a kind of side-slung backpack. He was doting nurse during his mother’s episodes, and unbending apportioner of calories in lean times. Dauntless when it meant crossing mighty rivers, relentless when it came to finding mountain passes. But the endless marching, the unreliable diet, and the countless predators made the three wanderers lean, haggard moving targets. There were times when the little lamp of family was all but extinguished, and long stands in places that seemed absolutely impassable. Still, the boy would work things out. He would stoop to any level to feed Hero, and for a stranger to threaten his father was to summon a psychotic, unyielding monster. He was both spear and shield.
The toughest job of all was maintaining a tight unit, meaning he was forced to become a hard-nosed ******* whenever his father was ready to wander off, which always seemed to be whenever the mother was hurting most. She’d become a tremendous impediment to Hero’s compulsion, and therefore her son’s chief nemesis. It wasn’t a big-picture concern anyway; the writing was on the wall. The blue lady’s attacks were increasing spectacularly on the steppe; her world had always been an enclosure of some kind, and the great horizon was proving just too much. Perhaps these intense affairs served as links to Hero’s suppressed memories, for at the onset of each attack he’d turn and hike, and then only exhaustion could curb him. The boy would press his mother on, dragging, shoving, and smacking—he could be mean when necessary, and though circumstances had made him the nucleus, their worlds unquestionably revolved around Hero. Where he sat, they sat. When he rose, they did the same. In this manner they marched for years across the vast steppes, single-file—father, mother, and son, respectively—unmolested, lacking possessions, always following the sun. Long before they could be measured they had drifted into obscurity.
The woman’s end came quickly and dramatically, in a rocky little depression on a half-frozen field. One moment she was responsive to her son’s prompts, the next she was flat on her back, her eyelids fluttering. That night she leapt from fever to chill, from alertness to stupor. The boy, squatting beside their campfire, watched her face and hands run cadaver-blue to fish belly-pale and back again. While he was staring her eyes popped open and her hands came scrabbling. He sweated through the clawing embrace until he could bear it no longer. He oozed out and ran down to fetch his father.
When they got back Hero watched incuriously for a while. His mate’s face was scrunched up and her skin the color of sapphires. She wasn’t breathing.
His gaze became glassy, his eyes returned to the night. As he rose the boy immediately grabbed an arm. Neither moved for minutes. When the boy at last relinquished, his father casually stumbled off.
Strange things were going on in Hero’s world. Some days he would notice how animals regarded him oddly, in a manner that seemed almost personal. He found, for instance, that particular creatures were recognizable even over great distances. A number of times he would sit with one in a stare-down, waiting patiently, until the animal’s natural disposition caused it to bolt. Though the meaning of these encounters was way over his head, he would watch, and he would listen.
In time he noticed an increasing skittishness in some of these familiar creatures. Something had them spooked. He then observed a number of lean gray wolves moving in and out of the picture with an air of complete indifference:  these wolves weren’t hunting; they were loitering—lounging in the grass, lackadaisically padding to the rear, filing by slowly in the distance. Once in a while a lounger would raise its head, yawn cavernously, and drop back out of sight. So unobtrusive was their behavior that even Hero’s ever-vigilant son began to take them for granted. They paused where the family paused, and halted whenever the woman broke down. Perfectly camouflaged by the gray boulders and dire sky, they were completely forgotten in the drama of her passing.
There were other, far subtler events existing for Hero’s senses alone. He could perceive patterns in everything around him; in the manner vegetation gave way wherever his heart was leading, in the way so many animals appeared to be not merely mirroring, but making his course. And wind, rain, running water:  these phenomena had voices. Yet not for everybody. No one—not his mate, not his son, not another soul on the planet could hear this call, for they were all of a sort. They were static, they were temporal. Hero couldn’t have cared less about the lives of his family, or about the mundane goings-on in the encampments and small tribes they skirted. Such beings lived in a world that was defined by the moment. They shouted, they banged, they clamored.
But west—west was music.
For his boy, once again watching Hero shamble off, the moment of truth had arrived. He looked back down, at his mother’s death mask being remade by the dying light of their campfire. As the flames dwindled he could have sworn he saw shadows creep into the wells of her eyes, while others, crawling up around her jawline, drew her bluing lips like purse strings. He hopped to his feet and ran for another handful of tinder. When their little fire provided enough light he dropped to his knees and looked again.
She was sinking right before his eyes, every aspect of her expression in collapse. The boy watched clinically, fascinated. As the flames began to sputter he thought he could see large purple bruises spreading across her cheeks like the seeping limbs of overflowing pools. He bent closer.
From deep in the night came the longest, the leanest, the saddest wail he’d ever heard. He turned to see the starlit ghost of his father, facing away, staring at a low barren hill. Uncountable stars embroidered the spot. The boy made out a low shape moving along the hilltop, cutting off patches of stars as it passed.
The wolf howled again; a mournful, spiraling cry to nowhere and nothing. Hero’s head notched upward. He began to hike.
Halfway to his feet the boy stopped dead.
It took a minute to sense why he’d frozen in place, and a good while longer for his heart to quit pounding. He was aware of a nervous padding, and, once his vision had adjusted, of a lazy stream of eyes gleaming in the dying campfire’s light. The eyes bobbed around him, glared momentarily, returned to the ground.
A massive gasp, and his mother was tearing at his wrist. He watched her hyperventilating, saw her bulbous yellow eyes sinking in a wide violet pool. With a sizzle and pop the last tongue of flame was taken by the night.
Then her clammy hands were all over him, pulling and demanding, caressing and beseeching. He had to pry them off like leeches, had to place them clasped on her shuddering arched belly.
A silky snarl rose almost in his ear.
With a little squeal he sprang to his feet, even as something nearby jumped back in response.
The boy stood absolutely still while the panting thing padded nearer. They stood very close, smelling each other. He instinctively extended a hand, palm forward. But it was no good; his arm was shaking out of control. The snarl rose again, not so tentatively this time. His mother’s nails tore at his ankle.
The boy gently stepped away, only to find himself surrounded by the shifting silhouettes of half a dozen gray wolves. They approached in a calculated manner:  two from the left, one from the right, another from behind. He was being goaded away from his mother; he could hear her fists beating the ground, and a few seconds later the sounds of a nauseating assault and ravaging.
He shakily raised his other hand. Now both arms were extended, and their message was clearly one of defense rather than control. Two snapping wolves stepped aside, leaving him a gateway into the night. A cold wet nose bumped his wrist.
Screaming like a woman, he took off after his father just as fast as his feet would carry him.

                                                  BOY

Alon­g the great Kazakh Steppe a man could wander a lifetime and never meet another of his kind—especially if his kind happened to be Alaskan Inuk, and if he happened to be the teenaged patriarch of a two-man family going nowhere.
Here history is mostly mute.
Upon this continent-spanning steppe, unnamed communities were scattered and rebuilt, lives blown about by the wind. The only centers of humanity a traveler might encounter, far removed from the Silk Road at the very crack of the new millennium, were temporary encampments of civilization at its rudest—shifting holes of cutthroat commerce existing solely for the barter of silk and spices and hapless souls. Life here was revered far less than merchandise, and the longest-lived men were those who kept their distance.
Hero and his boy hiked over permafrost and tundra for years; their meandering course a drunken mapmaker’s scrawl. Chronological entries along this imaginary line would reveal that they’d stopped, sometimes for months at a time, when the father had grown too weak and disoriented to continue. Hero’s internal compass was long-sprung, and his weight had fallen considerably. He’d sit on his lonesome, scarecrow-scrawny, wistfully scrolling a 360-horizon while his boy scouted and scavenged. Then, for no apparent reason, he’d just up-and hike—sometimes northwest, sometimes along a tangential plane that always threatened to spiral. It was brutal:  winters were frigid, summers, by odd contrast, running steamy to baking. Season by season these marches lost their tenaciousness, and eventually their heart. Hero’s obsession was becoming his demise.
Now, to a hypothetical observer, the ratty pair of woolly camels materializing out of the rising August heat might have been mirages.
These beasts were novelties here, and pioneers, for they were way beyond their normal stomping grounds. They’d tramped for months with a mind-numbing monotonousness, a thousand miles and more; round the Urals to the south, and through the hard territory braced by the Volga and Voronezh, avoiding anything that even smelled of men. They’d been wild camels; ugly, ill-tempered, and unpredictable, until the boy tamed them by touch…but this new pattern was a literal change of pace…for weeks the frail little man and his dark teenaged son rose and fell with the animals’ rhythm, lulled by it, sick of it, dreaming of lands far removed from hoarfrost and peat moss. In this manner they were borne clear to present-day Belarus, whereupon the camels’ stupefying march began to quicken. Mile by mile they put on steam, until one day they reached a broad area distinguishable from its bracing terrain only by its many deep surface cracks. Here the camels’ behavior became erratic; they crouched at an angle while tramping, their long necks oscillating, their noses bobbing along the ground. Eventually they came upon a dingy pool nestled in a pebbly depression. The local brush surrounding this pool was situated like iron filings about a lodestone. The boy hauled back his camel’s neck and laid a hand on its brow. The brute slowed to a halt. The other camel imitated its partner, move for move. Simultaneously the animals dropped to their knees.
The boy jumped off, catching Hero as he fell. The camels stood watching stupidly as son maneuvered father, but after a while grew nervous and began tramping their hooves in time. They slowly stepped to the pool’s rim and knelt woozily, their noses poised just above the surface. Their whiskers danced on the pool’s face, their lids became heavy, their hindquarters quivered as they drank. Their nostrils, having fluttered in unison, remained agape. They appeared to be asleep.
The boy began filling skins.
The water was quite warm; he slurped a palmful and almost immediately felt intoxicated.
He flicked it off his fingers; the water was bad.
Three heads were now mirrored in the pool; the camels’ at ten o’clock and two o’clock, the boy’s at six. He watched their reflections continue to ripple, long after the pool had become still. His face, melting and firming, rapidly fluctuated between extremes of age, and between his own recognizable features and those of some…monstrosity. The effect was hypnotic. He felt his joints stiffen; his eyes became weak, his thoughts muddled…his face was irresistibly drawn to the pool’s surface, and for a moment he was in real peril of drowning. He ****** his head aside and creaked to his feet.
Where the camels had knelt were only the prints of their bellies and knees. In the distance they could be seen galloping all-out for the horizon, right back the way they’d come. The boy watched until they were swallowed by their dust, and when he turned around his father was long gone.
Now he knew it was all just a matter of time.
And sure enough, after eleven more days of feebly staggering along, Hero completely ran out of gas. The boy bundled him up in a shawl, like an old woman.
Sitting there, cradling an unresponsive man weighing less than eighty pounds, he couldn’t help but let his morbid fantasies run wild. He was now old enough to realize his father had at some time suffered severe head trauma, and honest enough to accept that the man was rapidly approaching a vegetative state. This understanding accompanied him like a shadow, and that night he questioned, for the very first time, his own convoluted rationale.
He was just beginning to sense that his will was not his own.
He built a semi-permanent camp west of the Desna and foraged in a tight spiral, always returning in a straight line. Some days he came back feeling uneasy, sensing another presence. Then it was every other day. It bugged him to no end. At last, when it became every day, he hauled his father to his feet and began a resolute march to the west.
Again he became anxious, and after only a dozen yards.
He turned slowly while hunching, certain something bulky had just dropped out of sight. Nothing looked suspicious, everything looked suspicious. He walked Hero some more, occasionally peering back over his shoulder. There was…something.
He whirled:  only masses of rock and high brush. Yet, when he really strained his eyes, he was sure, pretty sure, that he could make out a large crouching body continuous with the rocks. Heart in his throat, he began a slow steady creep, only to pause, positive the bulge, whatever it was, had shifted in response. The boy very gradually raised his arm until it was level with his eyes, faced the palm outward, and extended the arm parallel with the ground. He could almost feel some kind of current passing between his itching palm and…nothing. He walked over to Hero, stopped again. There’d been the subtlest sense of traction. The boy propped up his father in a cloud of flies and waited.
In a minute the bulge drew *****.
Out of the brush strolled a furry gray wild ***, her back inclined from countless weary miles; stretching her neck, pausing to nibble, taking her sweet time. Grungy as she was, she fit right in.
At the boy’s first casual step she immediately hit the dirt and remained flat on her belly, one big dark eye staring between her hooves. Another step, and her **** bunched up. The closer he got, the higher her rear end rose. When he was almost at arm’s length she sprang back and danced away, seeming to bound with delight. But not to the east, as she’d come.
To the northwest.
She backpedaled while the boy came on whistling and cooing, matching him step for step. But the moment he threw up his arms in resignation she spun round as though cued, dropped on her belly, and peered over her shoulder.
The boy was first to blink. This time he approached fractionally, keeping movements to a minimum. She rose just as carefully, sauntering northwest in reverse, and at the first sign of hesitation turned, dropped, and cautiously gazed back. The boy glared at that huge mocking **** and broke into a sprint. She easily danced out of reach, plopped down, and continued to stare.
He began hurling stones, with venom and with accuracy, until she’d scurried into the brush.
But on the way back to his father he could feel her tagging along.
Twenty feet behind she halted, looking bemused.
The boy nodded ironically. He walked Hero over, murmuring baby talk all the way, and firmly placed a palm on the animal’s muzzle once her breath grazed his fingers. She stroked his hand up and down with her whiskers, gave a kind of curtsy, and waited on her knees while he helped his father mount.
At Hero’s touch a shudder ran down her body. She stood up straight. Her eyes became set, her back absolutely stiff. She put down her head and began the long trek northwest, never once breaking stride.
It was an amazing march, an impossible feat. For a little over three days and almost four hundred miles she progressed like an automaton, driving herself without rest, without food or water.
After trotting alongside for an hour the boy climbed on and force-fed his father berries and smoked meat, his dark eyes constantly searching the countryside. Occasionally he’d see a run of red foxes to their left, watching intently, padding cautiously. Sooner or later they’d vanish, only to be replaced by a train of feline or equine pursuers. Packs approached and receded while, high overhead, flocks formed triangular patterns that continually broke up and reformed. There was a peculiar rhythmic quality to this ebb and flow that lulled his senses further. The boy shook his head to clear it, but his exhaustion was deeper than he’d supposed—even the brush appeared to be leaning northwest.
That first day he grew numb with the pace, and that night the relentless pounding of her hooves drew him into a miserable slumber. He wrapped his arms around his sleeping father and lay half atop. When he couldn’t keep his eyes open any longer he tore strips from his skins, then looped his tied wrists round her neck, his ankles round her belly.
On the second day she was breathing hard, but her back was still high and she showed no signs of faltering. Her eyes remained focused on the ground dead ahead. She always sensed the best routes; finding mountain passes, fording wetlands.
But by the third day they could feel her ribs quaking against their legs. Her breath exploded as she marched, blood frothed and caked about her nostrils. Still she pushed herself on, her pace so steady it was almost metronomic.
On the fourth day her legs were gone. She veered and stumbled, shuddering every few paces. The boy hopped off for the umpteenth time and tried to bring her to graze, but she wouldn’t be turned. He ran behind her as she staggered along, unwilling, or unable, to rest.
At last a foreleg gave and she went down hard. Sobbing and snorting, she plowed her muzzle back and forth in the soil, the useless leg repeatedly pounding the ground. After a minute she raised her head and brayed at the sky, her neck muscles taut, her head slowly swinging side to side. Her cry went on and on.
With a tremendous effort she pushed herself upright and butted the boy aside. Every part of her body was shaking. From her depths a low moan grew to a steady bray, and finally to a wild, pulsing howl. She came to a rise, but was too weak to climb without sliding. Stamping in frustration, she managed a few feet, reared feebly, slid some more. The boy got behind her and applied his back; it took all he had to assist her almost to the top. With a desperate lunge she crashed on her belly.
Amazingly, she dragged herself on, her howl now a scream, her head whipping left and right. When she could pull herself no farther she ****** forth her neck to its very limit and, with a shudder that ran from the tip of her nose to the tuft on her tail, shoved her muzzle straight into the dirt and died.
The boy hauled off his father and fell back. The animal’s eyes were fixed upwards, seeming, even in death, to be straining for a glimpse of what lay just beyond the rise. The boy half-dragged Hero the last few yards. They collapsed at the top, and together looked over the cold Baltic Sea.

At water’s edge a haggard fisherman sat on his boat’s ravaged deck, blindly staring out to sea. His was a queer vessel; a family structure built more like an aft-cabined barge than like seacraft typical of that period. The fisherman’s boat, like his mind, had been abused beyond repair.
He’d lost much in his life. Time had taken his dreams, pox his face, hardship his back and shoulders. And, more recently, a brawling band of drunken Baltic pirates had ***** his wife and daughter before butchering them along with his two fine sons, while he sat helplessly bound to the mast. Finally, to further their delight, they’d set the boat aflame and sent it crackling against the sun; knowing he could hear their hoots and howls, knowing he would drift undead, accompanied only by this last unspeakable memory.
But a squall, without prelude, had doused the flames and blown his home ashore.
There he’d remained for a full long day, staring at nothing, his shattered life caught on the rocks. On the second day he’d worked himself free and commenced staggering about in his memories, gathering shards. It was a pathetic claim. He made a pile of all the old bedding and linen and usable cords, and set about sewing a sort of mementos sail. All that third day he had sewn, and on the fourth he had hoisted this sail and been moved to see it billowing in a northwest-blowing breeze. Again he just sat and gaped. And later that day he’d become aware of a commotion taking place on the long grade leading down to the water, where a writhing mass of seagulls was proceeding like a tremendous slow-motion snowball. He’d never seen anything like it. It wasn’t uncommon to find gulls in a group of many dozens or more, but there must have been two, maybe three thousand of the birds now swarming toward his boat. They were making an incredible racket. In the midst of this cloud could be seen a couple of slowly walking figures; as they neared he made out a small man accompanying a boy in his late teens, both dressed in odd skins. When they reached the rocks his eyes were drawn to the small man’s face. It was a foreign face, brutish and dark, with a deep cleft running from above the right temple to the jaw’s left side. Whatever instrument had felled this man had been devastating—everything in its path was smashed, and with permanence. The forehead was caved in. There was no bridge to the nose, the left cheek was completely collapsed, one side of the mouth was a mangled mess. The jaw itself had set improperly, so that it jutted to the side. The general impression, especially from a distance, was of some unforgettable circus freak’s countenance puckering at an angle. It was a face right out of a nightmare. But there was nothing frightening about the eyes. They were the eyes of a child.
Maybe half the gulls hopped screaming on the rocks. The rest circled overhead.
The boy considered the fisherman curiously before placing a foot on the charred deck. His gaze went around the boat, lingered on the makeshift sail, returned to the slumped figure. He passed a hand before the eyes. No response. He then leaned in close and placed his fingers on the man’s forehead. Immediately that bleak expression became fluid, brimming over with horror and heartbreak. Tears rolled down the fisherman’s cheeks as he gasped, shuddered, and backed up the scorched mast to his feet. Thus propped, he squinted at his visitors and was overcome by a wave of homesickness so strong he had to turn away. The feeling bewildered him, for this vessel, and this sea, were all the home he’d ever known. He clung to the mast while the boy helped his father board. Once he’d collected himself, the fisherman tore a heavy crossbeam from the toasted cabin. He and the boy used this as a lever, and together they shoved the boat off the rocks. The wind picked up nicely, and the little craft was swept across the water.
Exploding off the rocks, the gulls shot after the boat as if it were brimming with fish, the loudest and orneriest vying for favored positions directly overhead. The melee attracted additional gulls—they came shrieking in their hundreds from all sides, banking and calling in the oddest manner, until the mass grew so thick as to cast a permanent shadow on the boat. All day long the clamor continued, and all that night. The fisherman rolled with the rudder, listlessly, allowing the sea to control him. Eventually he let go, that the wind might bear them where it would. His sail ballooned but held firm, and the boat fairly zipped across a sea somehow smooth as glass, broken only by the vacillating ripples of bottleneck dolphins and migrating humpback whales. The three tiny sailors sat hunched together, motionless, all throughout the next day, until the black coast of Sweden loomed in the twilight.
As the boat neared land the cloud of gulls broke up, shot to shore, and landed in groups of a thousand and more; a dizzying, wildly uproarious reception committee.
The dung-covered boat slammed into the rocks, shattering the fisherman’s trance. He intuitively walked his **** up the mast and, swaying there, watched the boy draw his father over the side and lead him to a clearing at wood’s edge. There in the dusk he made out what appeared to be a hefty spotted runaway heifer hitched to a rickety wood wagon. He saw the cow gallop up to meet them, saw the boy look around warily, saw him help the little man into the wagon and climb in beside him. The animal immediately began picking through the woods, the large brass bell round her neck clanging forlornly.
The clarity of that bell made him realize just how quiet it had become. He craned his neck:  there wasn’t a gull in sight. He fell back against the shot mast and slid onto his tailbone with a clacking of teeth. His eyes were misting up. In the gathering dark a few sail fragments flew past and were ****** into the woods. The boat rocked and relaxed. After that there was only the sound of the receding bell’s sad, monotonous song being batted about by the wind.

The little cow strode through moonlit woods until she came to a path formed by the rutting of wheels over many years. She followed this broken, serpentine track throughout the night, and by morning was passing farms and, occasionally, crossing broader paths that might realistically be defined as roads. All day long she bore down that ragged track, until she came in late afternoon to a clearing near a village. Here many such tracks converged. And here the boy slipped away while she grazed.
Sometime after dark he returned with a load of straw, a couple of pilfered blankets, and a fat iron kettle. Crammed in this kettle were salt, tubers, cheese, a few loaves of rye, legumes, and a plump foot of lamb sausage. Most of this ***** he’d brought in tied to the bowed back of a huge, puffing, highly amenable black pig which, thus laden, now followed the boy’s every step like a fresh convert tracing the heels of the messiah. The boy built a fire under the stars, filled the kettle with creek water, and commenced simmering their dinner. While waiting, he couldn’t help but note an odd feature of the local flora:  plants, especially trees, all seemed inclined to a northwesterly disposition, though no amount of wind could account for it. He shooed the pig. But rather than run along, it backpedaled in a nervous circle, round and round in reverse, until it lost its balance and fell on its ****. There it remained, a yard behind the wagon. The boy fed his father and lined the wagon with straw. They settled in for the night. The boy must have nodded, might have dreamt, but while he was drifting he became aware of a stirring in the woods. He sat up, saw the pig’s eyes gleaming inches from his nose. And there were a number of animals, some wild, some strayed from farmsteads, arranged in a broad circle around the wagon, their eyes glinting with moonlight. Not a rustle, not a peep, was lifted from the woods.
In the morning he woke to find the pig still staring. The fidgeting heifer, impatient to roll, began her long day’s march while Hero and his boy were yet stretching and scratching, and the ******* pig, galloping heavily, fell in close behind. Each new day this routine was repeated. They banged past farms and small communities until the ruts intersected a broad rocky road wending halfway across the kingdom. The cow addressed this road with vigor. They picked up followers—a goat here, a couple of sheep there—which hurried after the wagon as best they could. The cow stomped on with resolve, mile after mile, day after day, her bell keeping steady time. That bell’s peal attracted foals, lambs, and kids into the wagon’s narrowing wake. Hares hopped between hooves and wheels, boars and blue foxes fell in and withdrew. White falcons, normally solo fliers, whirled into wedge shapes high overhead.
At night the entire train would camp on the road while the boy raided proximate farmsteads, always returning fully laden. And as soon as the fire died the colony grew, creature by creature, and the moment the sun broke the horizon the heifer came to life and moved on, but each day a bit more resolutely, as though straining to meet a deadline. The march took on a sense of real urgency. The cow pressed on with attitude, the clang of her bell more strident with each passing mile. Soon her followers numbered in the hundreds, as animals deserted their farms or crept out of the woods to tag along. Tillers and traders stood dumbfounded, amazed by the bizarre flow.
Once they’d crossed into Norway the frothing cow veered hard to the west. The pace really picked up; no longer were Hero and his boy afforded the luxury of a night’s sleep in one spot. Days blurred into a single variegated flow as the bashed and lopsided wagon continued building its entourage; the riders were surrounded dawn to dusk by a confused and confusing scurry. Word of the flow’s weirdness preceded it clear to the Norwegian coast, so that now plowmen and merchants, wearily gathering their goggling families, found themselves lined in anticipation along the king’s highway. Horsemen went pounding to and fro with news of the procession’s progress and particulars, children ran through the streets banging pots in imitation of the cow’s approaching bell. Livestock wheeled and stamped, fowl leaped and crashed.
The slobbering cow broke into a run.
Bystanders trotted behind, calling back and forth excitedly, while the wagon’s permanent following squealed and squawked between their heels. The cow made a hard turn onto a widening swath in the brush. This swath, seeming to strain against the soil, ran straight down to the crest of a low hill overlooking the Atlantic. On either side a crowd had been studying the phenomenon for some time, but now all eyes swung to the dark and disfigured man and his son, clinging to the disintegrating wagon behind the careening spotted cow.
The trailing people traded views as they ran. Most—at the very outset of the new millennium, with Christianity burgeoning throughout Europe—leaned to the miraculous. Others, just as superstitious but prone to a darker point of view, threw looks of horror at the deformed little man. Yet they ran no less eagerly.
The galloping crowd made for the seaside, where only one local event of any moment was brewing:  on the coast a Greenlander Viking was preparing his longship for the rough voyage home. Impetuous son of the great island’s first permanent European settler, he’d just been baptized in Olaf’s court, and was now eager to sail—but not as a warrior—as a missionary. While his spirit remained in a tug-o’-war between his father Erik’s will and that of gods old and new, his duty was clearly to his king. And Olaf had charged him with the Christianization of pagan Greenland.
Something on the wind now made this destined man turn his head. From behind the gentle hill to his rear came a kind of thunder. Heads popped up, followed by a confused explosion of voices, and seconds later a frantic bug-eyed heifer burst into view, dragging the wheel-less skeleton of a shattered wooden wagon. On the wagon’s splayed frame a man and teenaged boy clung for their lives as the spewing animal made a beeline for his ship.
The new missionary, still egocentric enough to assume his Maker might actually toss him a personal, surreptitiously rolled up his eyes. The sky yawned at his arrogance. At his side a smallish cowled man rose irritably, but the missionary sat him right back down. He then snorted, squared his shoulders, and signaled his men to halt their preparations.
Knowing it was expected, he gathered his hard Nordic pride and coolly made his way into the crowd.

The priest clung to port, gagging above the waves.
After a completely uneventful minute he leaned back and stared through tearing eyes at the distant backdrop of gathering mists. Weeks now…a man of his constitution had no business at sea.
Along, too, were a quirky little man and his fiercely devoted son.
Through his pantomime, the boy had been so persistent in begging their passage that refusal, under the circumstances, would have been unbecoming not only a man of God but a man of the world.
So there it was:  a priest who couldn’t hold his lunch, a witless eyesore who couldn’t sit still, and a surly teenaged protector who snarled at the first hard look. This crossing just had to be some kind of divine test—of mortal patience as well as moral values. Norsemen weren’t made for babysitting.
The mists condensed.
And the shifting shape became a hard familiar coast.
And the longship was mooring, and the crew were jostling and clambering, and the big missionary had booted off the haunted little freak and his hypersensitive son, and was condescendingly half-escorting, half-carrying, the green priest ashore.
And they were home.

Priest in tow, Leif quickly took up the Christianization of Greenland’s Western Settlement, as per Olaf’s command. The mangled little man and his son followed him around like dogs, slept outside his door and annoyed his visitors, ultimately proving far easier to adopt than to shake. Barely tolerable shadows…still, the lad was simply amazing with livestock…and though the youth’s useless father seemed time and again to be just begging for a whooping, his son’s presence bore some ineffable quality that always curbed the missionary’s hand. Several times he’d witnessed the father approached by settlers bent on abuse. Each time the boy had stepped in, and each time the troublemakers were mysteriously repelled. The missionary of course didn’t attribute any kind of celestial intervention to these episodes, and certainly the popular notion of devilry was a natural reaction to the pair’s outrageous exoticness, but…in the son’s company, and even under the sharp eyes of his fellow Norsemen, Leif more than once found himself oddly moved to protect the father. And so the deformed man and his boy day by day blent in—as village idiot and mystic guide. And when in time a ****** brought tales of an unvisited land to the west, it was only natural for the restless Greenlander to buy that ******’s boat and, before stalwart comrades, weary family, and whimsical God Almighty, reluctantly accept the eccentric father and son as sort of seagoing mascots.
Hero was from then on irrepressible. During preparations he would pipe and stammer in his half-mute way, brimming with a confounding anxiety that kept him underfoot and at odds with all. On frigid nights he perched on the westernmost rocks, moaning to the horizon in the strangest fashion while his son stood guard. He positively spooked the locals; they’d gossip, nervously and with bile, of an answering wind that came wailing off the sea like a banshee in labor. The whole island wanted rid of him. And when his champing beneficiary, still clinging to the notion of Christian charity, bundled him aboard with his son and a crew of thirty-five, not a single settler was sorry to see him go.
Almost from the moment they cast off everything went wrong, as all attempts to control the longship were met with some kind of unknowable countermanding force. Vikings were not renowned for passive resistance—they fought, squaresail and steering oar, leaning oarsman to oarsman, until the ship rocked on the waves like a bucking bronco. An erratic weather system pursued them, worsening dramatically at each minute variation in heading. The Norsemen doubled down, and when the clouds finally burst wide, the cowling sea went mad. Dervishes whirled about the hull, crisscrossing winds bedeviled the sail. Patches of kelp belonging to much warmer waters came heaving alongside, fouling the work of the oars, while far to the west a humongous fog bank formed, eradicating the navigable field. The lightning-streaked horizon was a throbbing gray slit.
The longship became locked in a slow westerly current.
Fatigued crewmen complained of headaches and hallucinations, and of a nasty, slightly metallic tang to the air. There were numerous walrus sightings; bobbing flippers and snouts amid drifting ice chunks that came prowling the North Sea like a circling pack of famished white wolves.
Worst of all was the boy’s father—instantly agitated by everything and nothing, prey to some primitive impulse that caused him to periodically incline his head, shudder to his feet, and loop his arms as though embracing the sky. Leif would watch him scrabbling at the prow like a cat at a tree, furs snapping in the wind. He’d watch the boy re-seat him for the hundredth time, and for the hundredth time be filled with an immense contempt. By now he’d acknowledged that it takes a special kind of strength to shoulder charity and tolerance. That brown little freak struck him as an enormous malformed barnacle, slowly working its way back up the prow. Trying so hard to go unnoticed, looking and listening so intently, though there was nothing to see other than the growing shelves of fog, and nothing to hear save the rising, almost hysterical voice of the wind.
Leif sniffed the air, his ******’s instincts nagging him. This was a foul current, and a fool's errand; he took a deep breath and tentatively ordered the longship brought about.
The ship kicked twice, as though an enormous submarine hand had seized and released the hull.
A whirl formed in the water, causing the keeling ship to sweep around like a clock’s second hand. All about them, those drift-ice ghosts cruised dangerously near.
But they’d been liberated from that accursed current. Leif fiercely urged on his rowers, and at last the ship broke free. They made a bead due north.
Night came and the temperature plummeted.
Small sheets of ice converged, drifting between the hunks. The Norsemen, instinctively huddling amidships, passed out one by one in a massive pile of fur and flesh. In the freezing silence the floes bumped and recoiled, bumped and gathered, bumped and bonded. The tiny ship, swallowed whole, was dragged along in a labyrinth of black sea and interlocking slabs of ice.

The Norsemen came to in a surly, foul-smelling heap, lost at sea. While they were still groggy a voice cried out that a darker patch was developing in the fog. The men all fell to port. Under the confusion of their voices could be heard a distant rumble.
At this Hero hauled himself up the high curved prow. A half-light began to penetrate the fog, barely illuminating the irregular faces of drifting ice. The missionary stormed forward and indicated by gestures that if the boy didn’t restrain his father he would have the man tied down.
The longship stopped dead in the water.
The men found themselves regarding a perpetually frozen coastline swathed in bluish veils of mist. Directly before them loomed an immense ice cliff hundreds of feet high. Rising beyond this cliff were endless snow fields, where lean violet shadows seemed to drag about of their own volition. And upon those bleak fields a thin howling wind prowled, kicking up brief white dervishes, leaving a strange zigzagging signature.
Even as they stared, a darker shadow high on the ice cliff’s glistening face began to widen, accompanied by a cracking sound that could be felt before it was heard. With the illusion of slow-motion, a stupendous chunk broke out of the cliff and came screaming toward the sea. It hit the water like a bomb. The thunder of its separation and the explosion of its impact took a moment to reach them. Then, out of a spewing crater of crests and spume, the new calf came lunging, tromping the sea so hard the longship, fully a mile to sea, was swept out and ****** back in like a cork. The floundering mountain of ice bobbed and lilted, generating huge waves which continued to rock the ship long after the monster had settled. In a while the roaring in their ears subsided and there remained only the swirling, nerve-wracking howl of the wind.
The missionary’s eyes swept left and right. Whatever this place was, it sure wasn’t the fair shoreline he’d been promised. Hero again scrambled up the prow, and Leif again yanked him down. This time he made good his threat; he had the little nuisance bound, though he was half-tempted to let him take his chances overboard.
From somewhere deep in the haze grew a soulful, otherworldly call. It went on and on, electrifying the air, bottoming out once the ship had merged with that previously fought westerly flow.
By now Leif’s nerves were shot. He ordered the oars raised.
The longship began to drift. Ship and ice were pulled due west.
The clouds fell far behind as the ship embarked upon an amazingly calm sea—so calm its entire visible surface was featureless except for the faint wakes provided by the ship and its hulking ice companions. To the east a huge fog bank appeared on the horizon, and a while later a smaller bank to the north. Then a very dense one to the south. In time these banks converged, imperceptibly becoming a single mass that closed about the ship, bit by bit creating a slowly heaving dome. Tiny beads of water appeared on beards and eyebrows; in a minute everything was soaked. The only sound was that of the dragging steering oar. The men were now sopping ghosts, speaking only with their eyes.
Directly ahead the fog began to dimple. The dimple became a hollow, the hollow a cave, and then ship and ice were being towed through a low, ever-extending tunnel in fog. The current increased its pull. Ship and drifting ice accelerated through the tunnel.
After a while the missionary quietly stepped forward. He stood with one hand on the prow’s neck, listening to the mist, so motionless he might have been a carved extension of the longship’s aggressive design. Not a man breathed. The tunnel’s dilating and contracting bore was producing an all but seamless series of oscillating, near-phonetic sounds. Leif almost tiptoed back. No god, pagan or Christian, could account for the strangeness of this situation.
They were borne on a course that grew more southerly, and the following day beheld an inhospitable shoreline glazed by dazzling white beaches. Their course held. Two days later they came upon a far pleasanter, thickly wooded coast. Here the current released its hold, and here the missionary untied Hero and personally placed him and his son in a tiny oak faering. He was just as sick of them as he was excited by this promising new land. Once the rowboat had been heaved over the side, he and another man stepped aboard and took up the oars. They began rowing with easy, powerful strokes.
When the boat kissed sand the missionary stood unsteadily.
The first European to set foot on North American soil now placed one hand on his crucifix, the other on his sword’s hilt, and awkwardly plunged his leg into the thigh-deep, ice-cold surf. Before he could take another step the boat lurched as Hero leapt headfirst into the water, followed an instant later by his son. The Greenlanders watched sourly as the two splashed their way into a mad dash for the waiting pines. Leif wished them both good riddance and turned to grin wryly at his fellow Norseman. He must have blacked out for a second, must have been blinded by a shaft of sun, for he found he was staring stupidly at a point midway between his companion and the longship. It felt like he’d been kicked between the eyes.
Everything was dissolving.
He studied the beach and pines closely, but saw nothing of the man or his boy. He turned back, disoriented. With what seemed a superhuman effort he took up his oars. He rowed out sluggishly, in a dream, and the fog rolled in to meet him.

The boy broke into the trees and embraced a trunk, fighting for breath. What happened next happened so fast and so unexpectedly he didn’t have a chance to react.
Three savages stepped from behind the pines and beat him to his knees. They twisted his arms behind his back and hauled him to his feet. He’d barely processed the impression of a wild painted face when something sharp struck him ******* the temple and tore down his cheek to the jaw. Two of the assailants manhandled him into an upright position and held him in place while the third brought his weapon down again and again and again.
All but dead, he watched a nightmare countenance shouting through a shot veil of blood, and behind that image a reeling crimson sun. He lay there gushing while the savages went through his rags. They propped him against a pine and shrieked with triumph, tore the hair and gory scalp from his skull, threw back their heads and screamed at the screaming sky. Tooth and nail, they ripped apart his face and throat and, certain he would die, split what bits of fur were left and let his carcass lie.

                                                HERO

The weeks stretched into months while he fought his way back into the light.
He progressed in stages; only half-conscious, stumbling along in a blood-red stupor punctuated by a slow strobe of frequent blackouts. Days loomed and decayed, nights pounced and were gone; the backlit, swirling gray cosmos collapsed and expanded on every missed beat of his pulse. A thousand times he broke down to die, and a thousand times he clawed to his feet, driven to pursue a tiny, ghost-like figure fluttering in his memory.
Everything conspired to check him.
A bay like an immense landlocked sea was skirted over months or years—it was all the same. Cold locked him in, Hunger drove him afield, that rude ***** Wind lashed him blind, wore him like a shoe, screamed for his skin while he worked his way west.
Somehow he ate, somehow he avoided being eaten; the instincts that had served him halfway around the planet were still vital beneath the abused exterior. His simple burrows became sturdy temporary shelters. He relearned the art of fire, and began to cook what he killed. He manufactured crude snares and weapons and, when his recuperation was complete, paid closer attention to the on-again, off-again trail he’d been following…forever.
Sometimes this trail would call to him like a lover. Other times he stood peering uncertainly, trying to recapture meanings and aims. Then the ground would turn spongy and the sky revolve, and once again he’d be lying all but dead in the woods, while from the face of the sun emerged a vile winged horror, its ugly pale head lashing side to side, its cruelly hooked beak dangling something that glistened in the wild pulsing light…then the fat moon, rising like gas against the icy black night…the feel of the wind:  the slashing of her nails, the chafing of her hem…the sound of things crunching and pausing and sniffing…then the sun, blazing anew. And again that thing, descending, its wide black wings beating slowly, metronomically—but none of that mattered any more. For his mind had quit him, had flown howling into ice and pine to roost with things surreal. In the day his madness might muddle and run, or spend the light stalking, cat-like, watching and waiting. But at night it came creeping from all sides. Sometimes it came in waves. It could gnaw like the devil, or wrap around him like a warm second skin. But none of that mattered either.
The only thing that mattered was the trail—whether it was lost for good, or for only a while. He’d been following it through his episodes, always north, wondering just who and where in the world he was, and trying to shake a ridiculous notion of being led on a wild goose chase.
The cold was unbelievable.
The deeper north he delved, the more confused he became. He grew starved for colors and scents, finding nonexistent patterns in the stark contrast of shadow and snow. He thought he could detect a kind of otherworldly design in the overwhelming number of dead ends he encountered, and, too, in the diabolically frustrating locations of natural obstacles. He seemed to be forever fighting the wind—a hulking, despondent snowman, he hiked face down and focused, while another aspect of his attention floated just behind, disembodied, watching his silent pursuers…leaving no tracks, blending perfectly with the environment in their clever winter coats…not predators, but creatures that normally should have been hightailing it away from him. By the time he could turn, they’d become nothing more menacing than snowdrifts. But they pursued him nevertheless.
And so his paranoia increased…had there ever really been a trail…and when did this miserably cold, miserably anemic crusade begin…his long-term memory was falling apart a chunk at a time. It just got colder and colder and colder until at last, one snippet of a day during one blur of a year, he found himself utterly lost, and clueless as to his history or objective. His mind was a blank, as colorless and featureless as the endless world of ice around him. He’d come this far solely to learn that the only trail he’d been following was his own—and now even that trail was succumbing to ice. On all sides there was nothing to see but an infinite field of glaring whiteness, and nothing to hear but the ululating wail of the tubular polar wind. It was the loneliest, the unholiest, the creepiest sound imaginable. But it wasn’t insanity that made him wheel. It was his self-preservation instinct.
And then he was somehow on his knees in the woods, facing a furious setting sun.
Whole seasons had passed from his memory like chalk from a board. His only recollections were those of a broken, haunted animal:  of being perilously sick, of fearing the unseen, of blindly struggling across a solid-white wilderness. That he’d survived such an ordeal meant nothing to him. And that he had in some indecipherable manner stumbled across the cold-as-stone trail did not fill him with amazement or with thankfulness—there simply wasn’t anything visual or emotional left to draw on. A significant part of his life had been whited out.
But now he could focus entirely on the trail. And before he knew it, the fuzzy area between fantasy and reality found a seam. He began to analyze and plan. He paid attention to hygiene, and kept a kind of running mental journal. Things were sorting out. Yet there were nights when the old sickness would resurface, reestablish its hold, and leave him sweating and uncertain under the stars. Then, paradoxically, his perception would become razor-keen. And so he would see, on a distant hilltop, a pair of scrawny silhouettes, one on four legs and one on two, slowly crossing the faintly pocked face of the setting moon. He would become strangely excited, and thereafter retain crystal-clear images of himself, as if seen from above, hurrying with adroitness through the silent, graveyard-like setting of black and blue night and white-frosted trees. Then the fuzzy area would broaden, and it would be the next morning, and he would be staring at the prints of man and elk in snow. And he would see how the elk’s prints doubled back, and how the man’s prints terminated where he had obviously mounted his guide. An unfathomable glow would bring tears to his eyes. But, even as he gathered himself, a fresh snowfall would wipe out the prints. And once again the world would plummet into white. And the wind would howl as the snow hammered his eyes. And he would ***** on.

A haggard animal sat shivering in a small grove of frozen pines, watching his campfire die. His eyes were fixed. Like the fire, he was running out of warmth, running out of fuel. There wasn’t a whole lot of tinder round his bones, and not much feeling left in his limbs. The slowly heaping downfall was burying him alive, but he was too numb to care.
It had taken him six long years to cross an entire continent, and during that time he’d known only cold and excruciating pain. The pain was leaving him now. The cold was making it right. His eyes glazed over.
Along a narrow plain to the west a herd of caribou filed dreamily through the snow, cutting across a panoramic backdrop of dazzling white mountains. The slow-motion parade was hypnotic. After a while it occurred to the drifting man, in a roundabout way, that he was dying, that he was nonchalantly freezing to death. Concurrent with this notion there rose in his chest a wonderful liquid warmth. His eyes slowly closed and, once shut, began to set fast.
He was jolted from within. It was as if he’d been kicked in the heart.
He ****** to his feet, pounded his fists on his thighs, felt nothing. The breath spurted from his mouth in small white clouds as he stumbled downhill after the slow caribou train. He swam through the snow, hallucinating, imagining that certain individuals in the herd were mocking him by slowing and accelerating, while others glanced back with expressions of contempt.
As he burst into their midst the animals stepped aside indifferently. A few galloped ahead to keep up the herd, but most simply sidestepped while he danced there, stamping his feet and smacking his hands. The herd grew thinner, until only the old and infirm were filing by. The man desperately embraced a hobbling female for warmth, but she cried out and kicked, triggering a panic reaction in the herd. Clinging for his life, the man was dragged along beside her as the herd stormed into a maze of flying ice and snow. His weight caused her to stagger sideways until they slammed against the flank of a sick male. The man instinctively threw an arm over the male and, thus draped between them, was borne across the drifted plain for upwards of a mile, his freezing feet alternately dangling above and dragging through the snow. The herd broke into a hard run, forcing him to assume a broken trot. Soon his legs were stinging. Sensation rushed through his body.
Now the herd, still picking up speed, began to contract, jamming him between his bearers. There was a quick jolt to his right and he was lifted clean off his feet, nearly straddling the bucking female. It had become an all-out stampede. Through hard-flung snow he saw the cause:  just ahead, the caribou had run head-on into a solid wall of galloping wood bison, and both frantic herds had blindly veered to the east; were in fact running side by side down a deep, ragged canyon—were pouring over the canyon’s lip like a cataract. He was approaching, at breakneck pace, that very place where the converged herds so abruptly swerved. The hanging man snarled as he was borne inevitably to the point of deflection.
There came a concussion at his left shoulder, followed by a blast of snow. In an instant the ailing male was tumbling head over heels to the east, ****** into the stampede’s plummeting mass by the fury of its descent. The man and female, rebounding from this impact, were shot to the west in a crazy jumble of flailing legs. The caribou lost her footing, flew nose-first into a snowbank, and came up running. Kicking off, the man used the last of his strength to heave himself astride. At first she fought to shake him, but the spell of the run was too strong. She and half a dozen others went pounding in the opposite direction of the stampede, quickly joined by a number of bison that had likewise splintered from their herd. The riding man could make out their huge hulking shapes thundering by in a blizzard of flying ice, could hear their heavy gasps and explosive grunts. One passed so close he felt its massive flank brush his leg. He peered to his right and saw a black, pig-like eye regarding him excitedly, moving up and down like a piston as the beast ran alongside.
The eye shifted, focusing on the gasping, completely obsessed female. The bull dropped its head and slammed into the caribou’s side, sending her and the man careening down a ***** to the west. The caribou brayed hysterically and her backside went down, but she managed, despite the weight of her rider, to return to all fours and frantically continue along the *****. Again the bull charged, crashing into her shoulder. The man and caribou were launched sideways into the white searing air.
He sat up carefully. The huffing bison was straddling him like a bully laying down the ground rules. Its big wiry beard came right up to brush his chin. The stench of its breath was stupefying.
The bull stamped and snorted, thrusting its stubby horns left and right as the man used his elbows and heels to back away. The bull followed, move for move. When the man collapsed under his own impetus the bull shoved him along with its snout, bellowing furiously. Clear down the ***** they lunged, shoving and lurching, until the man lay sprawled on his back; up to his chin in snow, completely helpless. The ton of a bull butted and kicked, but only glancingly:  those hooves could **** with a blow. At last the man, in one clean sequence, spun on his rear, dropped to his side, and went rolling down the ***** using his elbows for ******.
At the bottom ran a narrow fence of frosted saplings marking an ice cliff’s precipice. He lay face down in the snow, too done in to do anything but **** at an air pocket.
And there came a high-pitched crackling, a sound like the protracted gasp of embers in a dead fire. He turned just as those saplings began leaning to the west, their frozen skins cracking with the strain.
The bison bellowed menacingly.
The sprawled man looked back and saw it still standing with legs spread wide, silhouetted against the sky. In a moment it began huffing downhill, lurching side to side, surfing the snow between lunges.
It chased him through the genuflecting saplings straight into a frozen gully where, protected by a few feet of insurmountable verticality, he was able to slide on the ice between its stomping hooves, downhill out of reach, then downhill out of control—spinning just in time to glimpse a breathtaking vista:
Partly framed by the gully-straddling saplings was a vast crescent of jagged white mountains seemingly huddled round a small stretch of snow-draped pines. The little wood these mountains surrounded was isolated in a broad lake of solid ice. Hundreds of fissures radiated crazily throughout this packed ice field, appearing to issue from somewhere near the frozen wood’s center, which was completely obscured by a ring of rising mist. Above this thumbnail panorama the sun showered gold.
Then the gully dipped radically, and he was skidding headfirst, slamming back and forth against its slick white walls. This uncontrollable plunge had the positive effect of getting his blood flowing. Yet it tore him up. Had the gully concluded in a cul-de-sac, or had further progress required a single calorie of uphill effort, his struggle would certainly have ended here. He would have been too weak to move, and death would have been swift.
But there was a glacier—a great river of ice pouring slowly out of the clouds. The gully, terminating in a little scoop formation near the glacier’s base, spat him flailing onto its gnarly glass hide. He went head over heels, bits of skin and fur flying like chips from a band saw. Somehow he gained his footing, and then he was running against his will, tumbling and recovering and tumbling again.
He didn’t catch much of that crazy run. He half-glimpsed whirling walls of ice, felt a fickle surface underfoot, and broke through an assaultive mist that clung to his ankles and arms. He remembered having the ragged hides torn right off his body, and then being skinned alive. And he remembered reaching the glacier’s base and crawling like an animal; round its sweeping drifts, past its peaked moraines, all the way to a twisting frozen gorge.
And he followed this gorge down; ricocheting wall to wall, delirious, small plumes of thrashed snow marking his descent.
Through a freezing wood he fumbled. In a veil of mist he tumbled down a steep and verdant grade. As cold consumed his closing breath, he fell upon, near-blind, near death, a strange, enchanted glade.

There is a pool.
And in this pool a man lay purged, his broken body half-submerged.
The stumbling man stopped. He knelt to weep, but lost his thread. One hand took a bicep, the other, the head. With a twist and pull the corpse emerged.
That visage…that face—misshapen mask, contorted, bleached; of life’s deposits fully leached. Essence dispatched—a void, sodden wretch.
He let it fall and the glass was breached. All a freak, all a stretch:  upon this act his grip detached.
And the bridge collapsed…one vagabond grasp…what were these feelings; recaptured and trashed…a span elapsed…who was this puckered mass…he hauled it by the waist and thighs…slid it in, watched the pool react:  purse and recover, expand, contract. The glass reformed, now silver-backed…a sudden mirror…the man leaned nearer…saw his reflection, just smashed, remade intact.
The pool grew still.
Within its depth a shadow stirred—visions gathered, some distinct, some obscure. What they meant, and who they were, was much too much to fathom. The glass became blurred.
He closed his eyes, let his heavy head fall, fell back on his haunches, felt the sweat seep and crawl. The air was a pall—as he struggled to rise, a nib crossed his wrist.
He opened his eyes.
Between his fingers the blades poked and crept. Round his knuckles they ventured, up his forearm they stepped:  they seemed to be triggered by prompts from the ground. He shook his head slowly and dully looked round.
There were jays grouped about him, their black eyes aglow. Red hens came running, their fat chicks in tow. Gophers engaged in a weird hide-and-seek. Bluebells and buttercups craned for a peek. Sparrows hopped past and, paying no heed, burst into flight. He watched them recede.
Westward they flew.
Bewildered, he slumped.
Bumped from behind, he jumped to his feet, flabbergasted to find an ancient gray moose near-eclipsing the sky, with grit in his snarl and fire in his eye.
The old moose took aim.
The man turned to flee and stumbled, then tumbled and fell on a palm and a knee.

But there lies a world (so the lullaby goes) where rivers ever run.
Poked from behind, pushed out of his mind, he staggered into sun.







Copyright 2020 by Ron Sanders.

Contact:  ronsandersartofprose(at)yahoo(dot)com
Sorry about the ghastly copy. This system makes graceful formatting impossible.
1.
From my
uneasy bed
at the L’Enfant,
a train's pensive
horn breaks the
sullen lullaby of
an HVAC’s hum;
interrupting the
mechanical
reverie of its
steadfast
night watch,
allowing my ear
to discern
the stampede
of marauding
corporate Visigoths
sacking the city.

The cacophony
of sloven gluttony,
the ***** songs of
unrequited privilege
and the unencumbered
clatter of radical
entitlement echoes
off the city’s cold
crumbling stones.

The unctuous
bellows of the
victorious pillagers
profanely feasting
pierces the
hanging chill
of the nations
black night.

Their hoots
deride the train
transporting
the defeated
ghosts of
Lincoln’s last
doomed regiments
dispatched in vain
to preserve a
peoples republic
in a futile last stand.

The rebels have
finally turned the tide,
T Boone Pickett’s
Charge succeeds,
sending the ravaged
Grand Army of the
Republic sliding
back to the Capitol,
in savage servility,
gliding on squeaky
ungreased wheels
ferrying the
Union’s dead
vanquished
defenders to
unmarked graves
on Potters Field.

The Rebels
joyous yell
bounces off
the inert granite
stones of the
soulless city.

The spittle
of salivating
vandals drips
over the
spoils of war
as they initiate the
disassemblage,
the leveling and
reapportionment
of the grand prize.

The clever
oligarchs
have laid claim
to a righteous
reparation
of the peoples
assets for
pennies on the
dollar.

Their wholly
bought politicos
move to transfer
distressed assets
into their just
stewardship
through the
holy justice
of privatization
and the sound
rationale of
free market
solutions.

In the land of the
pursuit of property,
nimble wolf PACs
of swift 527, LLCs
have fully
metastasized
into personhood;
ascending to
the top of the
food chain in
America’s
voracious
political culture;
bestriding
the nation to
compel the
national will
to genuflect
to the cool facility
of corporate
dominion.

As the
inertial ******
of the plaintive
locomotive
fades into
another old
morning of
recalcitrant
Reaganism,
it lugs its
ambivalent
middle class
baggage toward
it’s fast expiring
future.

I follow
the dirge
down to
the street
as the ebbing
sound fades
into the gloom
of the
burgeoning
morning,
slowly
replacing the
purple twilight
with a breaking
day of cold gray
clouds framing
silhouettes of
cranes busily
constructing
a new city.

The personhood of
corporations need
homes in our new
republic; carving
out new
neighborhoods
suitable for the
monied citizens
of our nation.

First amongst
equals, the best
corporate governance
charters form
the foundation of
the republic’s
new constitution.
Civil rights
are secondary
to the freedom
of markets; the
Bill of Rights
are economically
replaced by the
cool manifests
of Bills of Lading.

The agents of
laissez faire
capitalism
nibble away
at the city’s
neighborhoods
one block at a time;
while steady winds
blows dust off
the National Mall.

Layers of the
peoples plaza are
plained away with
each rising gust.  

History repeats
itself as the Joad’s
are routed from their
land once again.

A clever
mixed use
plan of
condos and
strip malls
is proposed
to finally help the
National Mall
unlock its true
profit potential.

As America’s
affection for
federalism fades
the water in
the reflection pool
is gracefully drained.

We the people
can no longer
see ourselves.

The profit
potential of
industry is
preferred over
the specious
metaphysical
benefits
of reflection.

The grand image,
the rich pastiche,
the quixotic aroma
of the national
melting ***
is reduced to the
sameness of the
black tar that lines
the pool and the
swirling eddies of
brown dust circling
the cracked indenture.

From his not so
distant vantage point,
Abe ponders the
empty pool wondering
if the cost of lives
paid was a worthy
endeavor of preserving
the ****** union?  
Has the dear prize
won perished from
this earth?

Was the illusive
article of liberty  
worth its weight in
the blood expended?

Did the people ever
fully realize the value
of government
by the people,
for the people?

Did citizens of
the republic
assume the
responsibilities to
protect and honor
the rights and privileges
of a representative
government?

Now our idea
and practice of
civil rights is measured
and promoted as far as
it can be justified by
a corporate ROI, a
shareholder dividend,
an earmark or a political
donation to a senators
unconnected PAC.

The divine celestial
ledgers balancing
the rights and
privilege of free people
drips with red ink.  

Liberty, equality
fraternity are bankrupt
secular notions
condemned as
expensive
liberal seditions;
hatched by
UnHoly Jacobins,
the atheist skeptics
during the dark times
of the Age of Enlightenment.

Abe ponders
the restoration
of Washington’s
obelisk, to
repair the cracks
suffered  from
last summer’s
freak earthquake.

I believe I detect
a tear in Abe’s
granite eye
saddened by the
corporate temblors
shaking the
foundations
of the city.

2.

The WWII Memorial
is America’s Parthenon
for a country's love
affair with the valor
and sacrifice of warfare.

WWII forms the
cornerstone of
understanding the
pathos of the
American Century.

During WWII
our greatest generation
rose as a nation to
defeat the menace of
global fascism and
indelibly mark the
power and virtue of
American democracy.

As Lincoln’s Army
saved federalism, FDR’s
Army kept the world safe
for democracy.

Both armies served
a nation that shared
the sacrifice and
burden of war to
preserve the grace of
a republican democracy.

Today federalism
crumbles as our
democracy withers.

The burden
of war is reserved
for a precious few
individuals while
its benefits
remain confined to
the corporate elite.

Our monuments
to war have become
commercial backdrops
for the hollow patriotism
of war profiteers.

We have mortgaged
our future to pay
for two criminal wars.

The spoils of
war flow into the
pockets of
corporate
shareholders
deeply invested
in the continuation
of pointless,
destructive
hostilities.

Our service
members who
selflessly served
their country come
home to a less free,
fear struck nation;
where economic
security and political
liberty erodes
each day while the
monied interests
continue to bless
the abundance
of freedom and riches
purchased with the
blood and sweat
of others.

America desperately
needs a new narrative.

The spirit of the
Greatest Generation
who sacrificed and met
the challenge of the 20th
Century must become
this generations spiritual
forebears.

The war on terror
neatly fits the
the corporate
pathos of
militarism,
surveillance
and the sacrifice
of civil liberties
to purchase
a daily measure
of fear and
economic
enslavement.

It must be rejected
by a people committed
to building secular
temples to pursue
peace, democracy,
economic empowerment,
civil liberties and tolerance
for all.

Yet this old city
and the democratic
temples it built
exulting a free people
anointed with the
grace of liberty
is being consumed
in a morass of
commercial
polyglot.

3.

During the
War of 1812
the British Army
burned the
Capitol Building
and the White House
to the ground.

Thank goodness
Dolly Madison saved
what she could.

The new marauders
are not subject to the
pull of nostalgia.  

They value nothing
save their
self enrichment.

They will spare nothing.

Our besieged Capitol
requires Lincoln’s troops
to be stationed along the
National Mall to defend
the republic.

The greatest peril
to our nation
is being directed
by well placed
Fifth Columnists.

From the safety
of underground bunkers,
in secure undisclosed
locations within the city’s
parameters, a well financed
confederacy employing  
K Street shenanigans
are busy selling off
the American Dream
one ear mark
at a time, one
huge corporate
welfare allotment
at a time.

The biggest prize
is looting the real
property of the people;
selling Utah,
auctioning off
the public schools,
water systems, post offices
and mineral rights
on the cheap
at an Uncle Sam
garage sale.  

The capitol is
indeed burning
again.

Looters are
running riot.

The flailing arms
of a dying empire
fire off cruise
missiles and drone
strikes; hitting the
target of habeas
corpus as it
shakes in its
final death rattle.
I make a pilgrimage
to the MLK Jr.
Monument.

Our cultural identity
is outsourced to
foreign contractors
paid to reinterpret
the American Dream
through the eyes
of a lowest bidder.

MLK has lost
his humanity.

He has been
reduced to a
a Chinese
superhuman
Mao like anime
busting loose from
a granite mountain while
geopolitical irony
compels him to watch
Tommy Jefferson
**** Sally Hemings
from across the tidal
basin for all eternity.  

MLK’s eyes fixed in
stern fascination,
forever enthralled
by the contradictions
of liberty and its
democratic excesses
of love in the willows
on golden pond.

Circling back to
Father Abraham’s
Monument,  I huddle
with a group of global
citizens listening
to an NPS Ranger
spinning four score
tales with the last full
measure of her devotion.

I look up into Abe’s
stone eyes as he
surveys platoons
of gray suited
Chinese Communist
envoys engaged
in Long Marches
through the National Mall;
dutifully encircling cabinet
buildings and recruiting
Tea Party congressmen
into their open party cells.

This confederacy
is ready to torch
the White House
again.

Congressmen and
the perfect patriots
from K Street slavishly
pull their paymasters
in gilded rickshaws to
golf outings at the Pentagon
and park at the preferred
spots reserved for
the luxury box holders
at Redskin Games.

They vow not to rest
until the house of the people
is fully mortgaged to the
People’s Republic of China’s
Sovereign Wealth Fund.

4.

A great
Son of Liberty like
Alan Greenspan
roundly rings
the bells of
free markets
as he inches
T Bill rates
forward a few
basis points
at a time; while
his dead mentor
Ayn Rand
lifts Paul Ryan
to her
Fountainhead teet.
He takes a long
draw as she
coos songs
from her primer
of Atlas Shrugged
Mother Goose tales
into his silky ears.

The construction
cranes swing
to the music
building new private
sector space with
the largess of
US taxpayers
money; or
more rightly
future generations
taxpayer debt.

Libertarians,
Tea Baggers, Blue Dogs
and GOP waterboys
eagerly light a
match to the
the crucifixes
bearing federal
social safety
net programs
to the delight
of NASDAQ
listed capitalists
on the come,
licking their chops
to land contracts
to administer
these programs
at a negotiated
cost plus
profit margin.

Citizens
dependent
on programs
are leery
shareholders
are ecstatic.

To be sure
our free
market rebels
don disguises
of red, white
and blue robes
but their objectives
fail to distinguish
their motives and
methods with
some of the finest
Klansman this
country has
ever produced.

5.

DC is a city
of joggers
and choppers.

Corporate
helicopters
wizz by the
Washington
Monument,
popping erections
for the erectors
inspecting the progress
of the cranes
commanding the
city skyline.

USMC drill team
out for a morning
run circles the Mall.

The commanding
cadence of the
DI keeps us
mindful of the
deepening
militarization of
our society.

A crowd  
rushes
to position
themselves,
genuflecting
to photograph
a platoon on
the move.

I try to consider
the defining
characteristics of
Washington DC.

DC is all surface.

It is full of walls
and mirrors.

Its primary hue
is obfuscation.

Open
communication
scripted from well
considered talking points
informs all dialog.

The city is thoroughly
enraptured in narcissism.

Thankfully, one can
always capture the
reflection of oneself in
the ubiquitous presence of
mirrors.  

Vanity imprisons
the city inhabitants.

Young joggers circle the
Mall and gerrymander
down every pathway
of the city.  

They are the clerks,
interns and staffers of
the judicial, executive
and legislative branches.

They are the children
of privilege.

They will never
alter their path.

You must cede the walk
to their entitlement
of a swift comportment
or risk injury of a
violent collision.

These young ones
portray a countenance  
of benevolent rulers.  

They seem to be learning
their trade craft well from
the senators and judges
whom they serve.

They appear confident
they know what's best
for the country and after
their one term of tireless
service to the republic
they look forward to
positions in the private
sector where they will
assist corporations
to extend their reach
into the pant pockets
worn by the body politic.

6.

Our nations mythic story
lies hidden deep in the
closed rooms of the
museums lining the
Mall.

I pause to consider
what a great nation
and its great people
once aspired to.

I spy the a
suspended
Space Shuttle
hanging in dry dock
at the air and
space museum.

Today America’s
astronauts hitch
rides on Russian
rockets.

America rents a
timeshare from
the European
space agency to
lift communication
satellites into orbit.

Across the Mall
I photograph
John Smithson’s
ashes in its columbarium.  

I fear it has become a
metaphor for America’s
future commitment
to scientific inquiry
and rational secular
thinking.

I am relieved to
discover a Smithsonian
exhibit that asks
“what does it mean
to be human?”

The Origins of Humans
exhibit carries a disclaimer
to satisfy creationists.

The exhibit timidly states
that science can coexist
with religious beliefs and
that the point of the exhibit is
not to inflame inflame religious
passions but to shed light on
scientific inquiry.

I imagine these exhibits
will inflame the passion of
the fundamentalist
American Taliban and
provide yet another
reason to dismantle
the Moloch of Federalism.

The pursuit of science
remains safe at the
Smithsonian for now.

7.

Near K Street at
McPherson Park
a posse of
well dressed
lobbyists, the
self anointed
uber patriots
doing the work
of the people
stroll through
the park
boasting a
healthy population
of bedraggled
homeless.

The homeless
occupy the benches
that have been
transformed into
pup tents.

Perhaps some of
the residents of this
mean estate were
made homeless by a
foreclosed mortgage.  

The K Street warriors
can be proud that their
work on behalf of the
banking industry has
forestalled financial market
reform.  

Through it exacerbates
the homeless problem it has
allowed these K Street titans to
profit from the distress of others.

Earlier in the day
I photographed
a homeless man
planted in front of
the Washington
Monument.

I wonder
if my political
voyeurism is
an exploitation of
this man’s condition?

I have more in common
then I probably wish to
admit with my K Street
antagonists.  

In another section
of the park the
remnants of a
distressed OWS
bivouac remain.

The legions of sunshine
patriots have melted away
as the interest of the
blogosphere has waned.

As the weather
improves Moveon.org
and democratic
party operatives
pitch tents in an
effort to resuscitate
the moribund
movement.

They hope
to coop any
remaining energy
to support their
stale deception,
a neoliberal vision
based solely on the
total capitulation
to the bankrupt
corporatocracy.

I heard someone say
a campaign lasts a
season; while a
movement for social
change takes decades.

If that metric proves
correct, and if the
powers don’t succeed
in compromising the
people’s movement
I’ll be three quarters
of a century old
before I see
justice flowing like
a river once again.

8.

I circle back to
the L’Enfant and
find myself
tramping amidst
the lost platoon
of Korean War
soldiers.

My feet drag
in the quagmire
of grass covering
the feet of this
ghostly troop.

My namesake
uncle was a
decorated
veteran of this
conflict and Im
sure I detect
his likeness
in one of the
statues.

The bleak call
of a distant train
sounds a revelry
and I imagine this
patrol springing
to life to answer
the call of their
beloved country
once again.

Yet they remain
inert.  

Stuck in a
place that the
nation finds
impossible to
leave.

The eyes of the
men stare into
an incomprehensible
fate.  

They see the swarms
of Red Army infantrymen
crossing the Yellow River
streaming toward
them in massive
human waves,
the tips of
sparkling bayonets
threatening to slash
the outmanned
contingent fighting
to bits.

They are the
first detachment
to bravely confront
the rising power
of China many
thousands of
miles away
from their homes.

America like
this lone company
is overwhelmed
and lost in the
confusion
that confronts
them.

Looking up
I perceive the
bewilderment
of my muddled image
reflected on the
marble walls
surrounding
the memorial.

I am a comrade-in-arms,
a fellow wanderer sojourning
with th
Robert Guerrero Nov 2012
weeping willow tears
heavy and warm
drowning herself
for the pain sge has watched

many years have passed
now a river flows
where the weeping willow stood
she lays at the bottom
still she cries

a heavy burden it is
as she watched young girls
fall victim to loves dangerous game
"No Mercy" love yelled
as the weeping willow began to cry

weeping willows tears
powerful and moving
drowning the village
with words unspoken

no more will the weeping willows tears fall
for she lays in peace
with love finally falling victim
to his own dangerous game
now peace is restored
to the weeping willows eyes
Sara Kellie Jul 2018
Promise me, my flesh you'll place
'neath a fledgling willow tree.
And as it grows toward blue sky,
It's in its grace you'll hear me cry.
Laden with the heaviest fears,
resembling, reflecting
my darkest years.

A fragile bone was once my arm,
so likened to the willows charm.
It's branches delicate,
could ne'er do harm.
It's soft and fluffy hand like bud,
encased in skin, the willow's wood.

Hold its hand at branches end.
My message, a vibration,
to you I'll send.
Until the death of said willow tree,
reminding you . . . . .
. . . . . . always of me.

Poetry by Kaydee.
The tired and deathly willow tree with stories to tell of debutantes, swinging
before entering hell.
david mitchell May 2017
-
sometimes i get tired of working,
i'd like to be more free.
not spilling paint,
dotting i's or crossing t's.
so i take a walk, make some tea,
stretch my knees and try to breathe.
-
the warmth of this unsteady breeze,
puts me at ease, it could put me to sleep.
i feel at home among these sad, sleeping trees.
i wonder what gets them down,
or maybe they're just having bad dreams.

dear weeping willows,
of what do you dream?
a cold night of lonely moonbeams,
or of dead tiger lilies floating downstream?
i hope you're happier than you seem.
dear dreaming willows,
why do you weep?
this is not really about trees, it goes at least a little deeper.
dream more.
Nigel Morgan Nov 2012
As a woman, and in the service of my Lord the Emperor Wu, my life is governed by his command. At twenty I was summoned to this life at court and have made of it what I can, within the limitations of the courtesan I am supposed to be, and the poet I have now become. Unlike my male counterparts, some of whom have lately found seclusion in the wilderness of rivers and mountains, I have only my personal court of three rooms and its tiny garden and ornamental pond. But I live close to the surrounding walls of the Zu-lin Gardens with its astronomical observatories and bold attempts at recreating illusions of celebrated locations in the Tai mountains. There, walking with my cat Xi-Lu in the afternoons, I imagine a solitary life, a life suffused with the emptiness I crave.
 
In the hot, dry summer days my maid Mei-Lim and I have sought a temporary retreat in the pine forests above Lingzhi. Carried in a litter up the mountain paths we are left in a commodious hut, its open walls making those simple pleasures of drinking, eating and sleeping more acute, intense. For a few precious days I rest and meditate, breathe the mountain air and the resinous scents of the trees. I escape the daily commerce of the court and belong to a world that for the rest of the year I have to imagine, the world of the recluse. To gain the status of the recluse, open to my male counterparts, is forbidden to women of the court. I am woman first, a poet and calligrapher second. My brother, should he so wish, could present a petition to revoke his position as a man of letters, an official commentator on the affairs of state. But he is not so inclined. He has already achieved notoriety and influence through his writing on the social conditions of town and city. He revels in a world of chatter, gossip and intrigue; he appears to fear the wilderness life.  
 
I must be thankful that my own life is maintained on the periphery. I am physically distant from the hub of daily ceremonial. I only participate at my Lord’s express command. I regularly feign illness and fatigue to avoid petty conflict and difficulty. Yet I receive commissions I cannot waver: to honour a departed official; to celebrate a son’s birth to the Second Wife; to fulfil in verse my Lord’s curious need to know about the intimate sorrows of his young concubines, their loneliness and heartache.
 
Occasionally a Rhapsody is requested for an important visitor. The Emperor Wu is proud to present as welcome gifts such poetic creations executed in fine calligraphy, and from a woman of his court. Surely a sign of enlightment and progress he boasts! Yet in these creations my observations are parochial: early morning frost on the cabbage leaves in my garden; the sound of geese on their late afternoon flight to Star Lake; the disposition of the heavens on an Autumn night. I live by the Tao of Lao-Tzu, perceiving the whole world from my doorstep.
 
But I long for the reclusive life, to leave this court for my family’s estate in the valley my peasant mother lived as a child. At fourteen she was chosen to sustain the Emperor’s annual wish for young girls to be groomed for concubinage. Like her daughter she is tall, though not as plain as I; she put her past behind her and conceded her adolescence to the training required by the court. At twenty she was recommended to my father, the court archivist, as second wife. When she first met this quiet, dedicated man on the day before her marriage she closed her eyes in blessing. My father taught her the arts of the library and schooled her well. From her I have received keen eyes of jade green and a prestigious memory, a memory developed she said from my father’s joy of reading to her in their private hours, and before she could read herself. Each morning he would examine her to discover what she had remembered of the text read the night before. When I was a little child she would quote to me the Confucian texts on which she had been ****** schooled, and she then would tell me of her childhood home. She primed my imagination and my poetic world with descriptions of a domestic rural life.
 
Sometimes in the arms of my Lord I have freely rhapsodized in chusi metre these delicate word paintings of my mother’s home. She would say ‘We will walk now to the ruined tower beside the lake. Listen to the carolling birds. As the sparse clouds move across the sky the warm sun strokes the winter grass. Across the deep lake the forests are empty. Now we are climbing the narrow steps to the platform from which you and I will look towards the sun setting in the west. See the shadows are lengthening and the air becomes colder. The blackbird’s solitary song heralds the evening.  Look, an owl glides silently beneath us.’
 
My Lord will then quote from Hsieh Ling-yun,.
 
‘I meet sky, unable to soar among clouds,
face a lake, call those depths beyond me.’
 
And I will match this quotation, as he will expect.
 
‘Too simple-minded to perfect Integrity,
and too feeble to plough fields in seclusion.’
 
He will then gaze into my eyes in wonder that this obscure poem rests in my memory and that I will decode the minimal grammar of these early characters with such poetry. His characters: Sky – Bird – Cloud – Lake – Depth. My characters: Fool – Truth – Child – Winter field – Isolation.
 
Our combined invention seems to take him out of his Emperor-self. He is for a while the poet-scholar-sage he imagines he would like to be, and I his foot-sore companion following his wilderness journey. And then we turn our attention to our bodies, and I surprise him with my admonitions to gentleness, to patience, to arousing my pleasure. After such poetry he is all pleasure, sensitive to the slightest touch, and I have my pleasure in knowing I can control this powerful man with words and the stroke of my fingertips rather than by delicate youthful beauty or the guile and perverse ingenuity of an ****** act. He is still learning to recognise the nature and particularness of my desires. I am not as his other women: who confuse pleasure with pain.
 
Thoughts of my mother. Without my dear father, dead ten years, she is a boat without a rudder sailing on a distant lake. She greets each day as a gift she must honour with good humour despite the pain of her limbs, the difficulty of walking, of sitting, of eating, even talking. Such is the hurt that governs her ageing. She has always understood that my position has forbidden marriage and children, though the latter might be a possibility I have not wished it and made it known to my Lord that it must not be. My mother remains in limbo, neither son or daughter seeking to further her lineage, she has returned to her sister’s home in the distant village of her birth, a thatched house of twenty rooms,
 
‘Elms and willows shading the eaves at the back,
and, in front,  peach and plum spread wide.
 
Villages lost across mist-haze distances,
Kitchen smoke drifting wide-open country,
 
Dogs bark deep among the back roads out here
And cockerels crow from mulberry treetops.
 
My esteemed colleague T’ao Ch’ien made this poetry. After a distinguished career in government service he returned to the life of a recluse-farmer on his family farm. Living alone in a three-roomed hut he lives out his life as a recluse and has endured considerable poverty. One poem I know tells of him begging for food. His world is fields-and-gardens in contrast to Hsieh Ling-yin who is rivers-and-mountains. Ch’ien’s commitment to the recluse life has brought forth words that confront death and the reality of human experience without delusion.
 
‘At home here in what lasts, I wait out life.’
 
Thus my mother waits out her life, frail, crumbling more with each turning year.
 
To live beyond the need to organise daily commitments due to others, to step out into my garden and only consider the dew glistening on the loropetalum. My mind is forever full of what is to be done, what must be completed, what has to be said to this visitor who will today come to my court at the Wu hour. Only at my desk does this incessant chattering in the mind cease, as I move my brush to shape a character, or as the needle enters the cloth, all is stilled, the world retreats; there is the inner silence I crave.
 
I long to see with my own eyes those scenes my mother painted for me with her words. I only know them in my mind’s eye having travelled so little these past fifteen years. I look out from this still dark room onto my small garden to see the morning gathering its light above the rooftops. My camellia bush is in flower though a thin frost covers the garden stones.
 
And so I must imagine how it might be, how I might live the recluse life. How much can I jettison? These fine clothes, this silken nightgown beneath the furs I wrap myself in against the early morning air. My maid is sleeping. Who will make my tea? Minister to me when I take to my bed? What would become of my cat, my books, the choice-haired brushes? Like T’ao Ch’ien could I leave the court wearing a single robe and with one bag over my shoulders? Could I walk for ten days into the mountains? I would disguise myself as a man perhaps. I am tall for a woman, and though my body flows in broad curves there are ways this might be assuaged, enough perhaps to survive unmolested on the road.
 
Such dreams! My Lord would see me returned within hours and send a servant to remain at my gate thereafter. I will compose a rhapsody about a concubine of standing, who has even occupied the purple chamber, but now seeks to relinquish her privileged life, who coverts the uncertainty of nature, who would endure pain and privation in a hut on some distant mountain, who will sleep on a mat on its earth floor. Perhaps this will excite my Lord, light a fire in his imagination. As though in preparation for this task I remove my furs, I loose the knot of my silk gown. Naked, I reach for an old under shift letting it fall around my still-slender body and imagine myself tying the lacings myself in the open air, imagine making my toilet alone as the sun appears from behind a distant mountain on a new day. My mind occupies itself with the tiny detail of living thus: bare feet on cold earth, a walk to nearby stream, the gathering of berries and mountain herbs, the making of fire, the washing of my few clothes, imagining. Imagining. To live alone will see every moment filled with the tasks of keeping alive. I will become in tune with my surroundings. I will take only what I need and rely on no one. Dreaming will end and reality will be the slug on my mat, the bone-chilling incessant mists of winter, the thorn in the foot, the wild winds of autumn. My hands will become stained and rough, my long limbs tanned and scratched, my delicate complexion freckled and wind-pocked, my hair tied roughly back. I will become an animal foraging on a dank hillside. Such thoughts fill me with deep longing and a ****** desire to be tzu-jan  - with what surrounds me, ablaze with ****** self.
 
It is not thought the custom of a woman to hold such desires. We are creatures of order and comfort. We do not live on the edge of things, but crave security and well-being. We learn to endure the privations of being at the behest of others. Husbands, children, lovers, our relatives take our bodies to them as places of comfort, rest and desire. We work at maintaining an ordered flow of existence. Whatever our station, mistress or servant we compliment, we keep things in order, whether that is the common hearth or the accounts of our husband’s court. Now my rhapsody begins:
 
A Rhapsody on a woman wishing to live as a recluse
 
As a lady of my Emperor’s court I am bound in service.
My court is not my own, I have the barest of means.
My rooms are full of gifts I am forced barter for bread.
Though the artefacts of my hands and mind
Are valued and widely renown,
Their commissioning is an expectation of my station,
With no direct reward attached.
To dress appropriately for my Lord’s convocations and assemblies
I am forced to negotiate with chamberlains and treasurers.
A bolt of silk, gold thread, the services of a needlewoman
Require formal entreaties and may lie dormant for weeks
Before acknowledgement and release.
 
I was chosen for my literary skills, my prestigious memory,
Not for my ****** beauty, though I have been called
‘Lady of the most gracious movement’ and
My speaking voice has clarity and is capable of many colours.
I sing, but plainly and without passion
Lest I interfere with the truth of music’s message.
 
Since I was a child in my father’s library
I have sought out the works of those whose words
Paint visions of a world that as a woman
I may never see, the world of the wilderness,
Of rivers and mountains,
Of fields and gardens.
Yet I am denied by my *** and my station
To experience passing amongst these wonders
Except as contrived imitations in the palace gardens.
 
Each day I struggle to tease from the small corner
Of my enclosed eye-space some enrichment
Some elemental thing to colour meaning:
To extend the bounds of my home
Across the walls of this palace
Into the world beyond.
 
I have let it be known that I welcome interviews
With officials from distant courts to hear of their journeying,
To gather word images if only at second-hand.
Only yesterday an emissary recounted
His travels to Stone Lake in the far South-West,
Beyond the gorges of the Yang-tze.
With his eyes I have seen the mountains of Suchan:
With his ears I have heard the oars crackling
Like shattering jade in the freezing water.
Images and sounds from a thousand miles
Of travel are extract from this man’s memory.
 
Such a sharing of experience leaves me
Excited but dismayed: that I shall never
Visit this vast expanse of water and hear
Its wild cranes sing from their floating nests
In the summer moonlight.
 
I seek to disappear into a distant landscape
Where the self and its constructions of the world may
Dissolve away until nothing remains but the no-mind.
My thoughts are full of the practicalities of journeying
Of an imagined location, that lonely place
Where I may be at one with myself.
Where I may delight in the everyday Way,
Myself among mist and vine, rock and cave.
Not this lady of many parts and purposes whose poems must
Speak of lives, sorrow and joy, pleasure and pain
Set amongst personal conflict and intrigue
That in containing these things, bring order to disorder;
Salve the conscience, bathe hurt, soothe sleight.
Sshuookgya Oct 2018
“Beneath the willow
She’s singing
Beneath the willow
She’s waiting.

Beneath the willow
Under the willow
Her body
Is now laid to rest”

A simple rhythm
I follow
A simple tune
I hum

A simple song
I used to sing
In those days,
When I was young

But I’m not a kid
Not like the other kids

They form a circle.
Hands held together.
Dance around;
Enjoy singing

I,
On the other hand,
Kept thinking
And thinking.

Why is there a willow?
Why is the woman there?

“Laid to rest”.
How?
Shot, eaten,
Poisoned?

May have died of old age.
May have not.

I wanted to know…
Already 18;
I went into the woods.
Looked for the willow I know

Two before, now three.
To the center willow;
“What was she singing?
Why was she here?”

There was nothing.
Just dead silence.

Asked again,
Yet no response.
Maybe, just maybe
I’m already losing my mind

I needed rest.
Something startled me.
A stone,
Not any kind of stone.

A graveyard stone
So old;
Dirt covered the entirety,
Although I have read these words.

“My beloved Willow,
For whoever finds your grave
Will be your eternal companion”

Is it just me?
Or is my mind on it again?
Doing its tricks,
Because of a graveyard stone?

Wind blew for a moment
As if someone passed by

Then I heard it,
I heard the song.
I saw a woman,
Heard her singing.

I stood there,
Paralyzed

In a long white gown
Hair dangling,
Towards me,
She walked.

Run…
Run!!
RUN!!!
Screaming in my head.

But I couldn’t
She got hold of me

Her hands,
Gripping tightly my arms.
I could not escape,
I could not run

Gripping me,
Still singing

“Beneath the willows
You’re singing
Beneath the willows
You’re waiting

Beneath the willows
Under the willows
Your body
Will be laid to rest”

Her head is up.
Her eyes,
Bloodshot red.
Gazing into my very soul.

“Let go of me
Please let go.”
Remains in my head
No word can I speak.

Feeling heavy
Helpless

As I try,
Making an inch move,
I am slowly devoured.
Not by her.

A willow.
Not two
Not three
Just one ****** willow

Slowly
Crushing me

Can’t get out
Nowhere to escape
STOP!!! STOP!!!
Trying to catch my breath

Agonized, screaming
Endlessly.

NOOOO!!!
Fully consuming me.

Awakened by my mother.
Embrace, she whispers,
“It was all just a dream.
My only beloved Willow”.
This is a first to publish on a website a poem of mine. I want to improve myself in writing poems.. Please do tell me if you have any suggestions or comments cause it will be a great help :) :) :)
CK Baker Mar 2017
there’s a barnacle scar
deeply ingrained
on the basalt stack
at mark thirty two
whispering summer winds
scented oil
cotton and roe
drift
as waves brush
and shape
the sandstone shore

the briny air
and lost erratic
set a tone to this
pollyanna portrait
it's andrews undulations
and gifted benches
its concessions
and traces of the barry burn
its sculpted driftwood
and sanko lines
make this picture
almost perfect

children play
as venom spews
from the caterwaul pair
those odd looking mates
casting smiles
with arrested despair
settling shots
swiping bugs
dipping and darting
as photo men
and muscles
and long neck seabirds
make their turn

the hunched hoody
and his sorted sidekick
get their fill
(of moss and rubble ~ chubby and kelp)
nice to meet your acquaintance
the pho man would say
an odd drop
and ironic turn
from those horrific corners
of timeless desperation
down by cannon bridge

harbor seals
and carriage horse
are fronted by
raven shade
jolly tides pause
in quiet bays
(with curious looters
and *** pickers)
sand merchants
and field totems
all streamed by the light

cirrus strands
blanket the
outer edge
hovering craft
and shimmering willows
bolt the evening frame
blood orange
and tethered
with a filtered glare
bottle-nose dolphins
and seabirds
(and shifting tides)
are all settling in
for the long night stay
Scarecrow Apr 2014
Echoes
The thunder echoes against the cracked jaw of the sky
I smell the heat and the humidity
And the envy

Drowning
The earth is drowning under the cannonade of rainfall
I can feel the sorrow and the hope
And the hubris

The unbridled fury of an outcast

Secrets
Whispered through the arms of a lover
On the wind whipping down the road
Up through the willows
Lotus Dec 2013
A small pond sits quiet in a meadow,
Circling it are three majestic willows.
The long green branches reach down
And the leaves brush the water’s surface,
Creating tiny ripples that grow and spread.
It is quiet here, in this meadow.
The breeze that lifts the
Willow branches is calm,
And the animals that occupy
The little corners are at peace.
Here, in this quiet meadow,
Stand three majestic willows,
Each one casting a reflection in the water.

*Another poem of three that I wrote for my friend's granddaughters
Klvshp0et Jan 2016
Weeping willows will wrangle wayward wanderers wrestling with worries washed with wrath.
When will we wash vices with bleach
until they are as white sands on a beach.
Maybe when we lose ourselves
we will become familiar with our true selves.
To save ourselves from the fearful and mystical
place we all call hell.

Though hell is on earth
it is the reason we are all born at our worst
and heaven is in our mind.
Yet, we are all slaves of time
and a punch in clock.
Cashing in time for currency
hoping that the pain will stop.
The pain of missing our seeds grow.
The pain of longing for what we don't know.
Life pains so deep
you don't get any sleep.
Weeping willows will wrangle wayward wanderers wrestling with worries washed with wrath.
Some say life is full of ****
a whole colostomy bag.
It hasn't been the best
man I can't brag.
Shots to cure the pain
I drag with mary on my brain.
She helps the drive
when I'm going insane
or away from those
that claim they are sane.
In a world filled with
doubt from the poor
and no hope from the rich.
You might feel
like calling it quits
but the sun shines bright
over the hills.
Even at night
it shines back at you
through the moon.
I stay up late
and watch it shine through my room.
Through the door
and down the halls.
That's how I know
I'll never fall.
Superior beam of light
with the will to fight
the monsters of the night
and the demons of the day.
That is why
I can tell those that are lost
that the weeping willows will wrangle wayward wanderers wrestling with worries washed with wrath.
Don't let the darkness
of the day
dim your light
and steer you from your path.
Merwin Nikad Oct 2018
Rain drop fantasy
I gently weep
In the morning
Spirits are closer
The sky has no end
And from it the hills emerge
Willows with me
Wisps in the fog
Willows with me
Theres something near
Willows with me
Now I can hear
The willows with me
I am there again
On the road
So far down
One light glowed
I walked
And walked and walked
Only the willows talked
Only the willows
Would ever talk
Often the convoluted nature of time and memories creates patterns in memories that match with contemporary life
Spenser Bennett Feb 2016
My veins are pumping gushing gold
Round and round this blushing girl
My heart: the broken center of this hollow world
All is silent against my rib cage: love creates turbulence
Whisper to your willows as they weep for yesterday's and succumb to impermanence

This sickness is spreading, I won't let it in
Decadence and heartache, they won't let you live
No
They won't let you live

Abandon your chastity
Abandon your morality
Embody vanity and chase the morale out of me
Purge your glittering eyes
So clouded with blistering lies
Diamond, diamond, fall out of the sky
All that glitters is poison to my mind

This sickness is spreading, I won't let it in
Decadence and heartache, they won't let you live
Jack May 2014
~


Such is the heart of a dreamer
Sought after deep in the mist
Seeking the quest of a thirsting desire
Falling to nights just as this

Peering the distant endeavor
Calling the places I’ve known
Sending out visions so endless in wonder
Standing this ledge all alone

Come to my heart always steady
Shape it as how it should be
Teach me the ways of your unending song
Lyrics of comfort to me

Lift me for thou hath once spoken
Take from my words on the page
Collections of feelings I wear on my sleeve
Shine me the light of your ways

I am of clay so unmolded
Bend me and shape me to form
Open my heart with the keys of your love
While dying I wish to be born

Caverns so wide as I forage
The depth of their wisdom vast deep
Shadows that follow the pathways I walk
Stairways my heart it doth reach

Yours is my desperate reason
Clinging to every fold
Challenges lie in wake of the storm
Northerly winds blow a’ cold

I shan’t recoil destinations
My mind it is set on the prize
Temptingly so it does fan every flame
Come I shall soon realize

Time for the moment an enemy
Season’s of past now I fear
For as I declare my longing for thee
Wishing you ever so near

Trapped as I traverse the mountain
Chains of my pain garner tight
Reaching for avenues lost in the fog
Blinded by darkness of night

Time I will relive the mornings
Joined by a perfect content
Welcoming sun rise as everywhere glows
Finding the hours we’ve spent

Trusting that no one is watching
Holding your hand on the street
Wrapping my arms round your waist for a while
Kissing your lips soft and sweet

Words that will require actions
Motions in spite of the sky
Threatening with clouds overhead as I walk
Waving the past a good bye

Now as my life is beginning
Fortunate flags sure to wave
Sending a secret embedded in stone
Caution for this I do crave

Asking this long winded journey
Steps in the grass for to find
Destiny praises my unfettered dreams
Spent as the heart does unwind

Yours is the hand that I reach for
Save me in spite of my tears
Love me for many more wars shall invade
Filling the city with fear

Run with me out to the fields
Keep me in sight at all turns
Paint me with colors so vibrant and true
Teach me for I want to learn

I can not be so untrue
Pressures no longer to hide
Truth is my shield as it shines ever gold
Honesty I shall confide

Come to my heart it is waiting
Here in this darkened abyss
Shining so bright for your eyes now to see
Longing for you that I miss

I promise you shall not be sorry
Taking this chance is the key
Found in the corners of words so inspired
True as my covenant be

I whisper my truth through the mountains
Breathless I run to the shore
Hopeful I patiently wait your reaction
Longing for you evermore

Soft is the sonnet of willows
Psithuric winds form the stream
Blowing so that you may welcome my peace
Singing the songs of your dreams

Mine is a tiresome journey
Fortunes all cast to the bay
Every dollar I’ve owned as a man
Spent in a fortunate way

For this is my precious possession
A heart that does beat from above
Carefully showing the face of the plan
Showering you with my love

Rain on the valley of passion
Petrichor scent brings the breeze
Take from this night the joys of affection
Lingered in fresh memories

This I do pledge, crossing my heart
No longer wishing to die
Rivers of hope that do wash on your feet
Sent forth attempting to try

Cherishing love that I find
Wanting forever to be
Everything that you do see in your soul
All that’s expected of me

I am but only one person
Doing just what I will do
Being myself in the face of the storm
Sending my love up to you

There is no mask I am wearing
This smile you see is for real
I can not be something that I am not
All of my life I reveal

Hoping that you understand this
Praying my words written of
Things that my heart wants to tell you my dear
Penned now with only my love

Such is the heart of a dreamer
Seeking not silver and gold
My only dream is that you love me true
Just as my dreams have foretold

So soft is the sonnet of willows
Wind through their branches blows free
Whispering dreams evermore shall come true
When you are standing with me
I realize this is a long one and if you choose not to read the entire thing, I understand
Daylight 4U2C Jul 2016
Everyday at 6 on the hour May Willows bathes in her flowers.
She gently smooths her lavender upon her gentle skin,
giving it such passion it entices as if a sin.
After which she reaches for her crimson towel and envelopes herself in it's subtle yet overwhelming power.
Yes, without this barrier walls would fall, hearts would sink, evil would rise.
Then her little peachy furs flutter to a wake.

IT is this time today when May Willows recalls the fateful event of her youth that has haunted her fresh adolescents and had given her such shivering adaptations.
She recalls the cold, unwelcoming shards skidding across her face. The speed of her skin against the granite causing her senses to numb in shock.
A party was being held but the ground did crash it. The home was wrecked and the valuables were shattered in the unkind intrusion.
But what was there to do? Nothing was to be done because there was no true damage. It burned only of envy and esteem by the suns next rise.
To say "at least" for what remains means "smile" would be simple. To say another state is ill-fed so you cannot ask for more would be belittling any reason, since every story reveals a different thinking that is living a different living, comparing unique to unique.
   May Willows was brave.
But what was bravery when the day replays? And she does not scream since she stayed so brave. She screams inside looking unflappable. The terror is not found in her eyes or her soul, but within her mind. In such a life where only you know and only you feel the calamity, where is bravery? What is bravery? Comfort is difficult when the problem is a ghost. When the truth is microscopic in attempt to evade the naked eye? What is bravery when the scars reveal a story that the body cannot be true to? What then is this great bravery that one might wish to wear? What then is brave?
It's weird. I know. I thought something up partially and the rest was kind of improvisational.
A Poem for Three Voices

Setting:  A Maternity Ward and round about

FIRST VOICE:
I am slow as the world.  I am very patient,
Turning through my time, the suns and stars
Regarding me with attention.
The moon's concern is more personal:
She passes and repasses, luminous as a nurse.
Is she sorry for what will happen?  I do not think so.
She is simply astonished at fertility.

When I walk out, I am a great event.
I do not have to think, or even rehearse.
What happens in me will happen without attention.
The pheasant stands on the hill;
He is arranging his brown feathers.
I cannot help smiling at what it is I know.
Leaves and petals attend me.  I am ready.

SECOND VOICE:
When I first saw it, the small red seep, I did not believe it.
I watched the men walk about me in the office.  They were so flat!
There was something about them like cardboard, and now I had caught it,
That flat, flat, flatness from which ideas, destructions,
Bulldozers, guillotines, white chambers of shrieks proceed,
Endlessly proceed--and the cold angels, the abstractions.
I sat at my desk in my stockings, my high heels,

And the man I work for laughed:  'Have you seen something awful?
You are so white, suddenly.'  And I said nothing.
I saw death in the bare trees, a deprivation.
I could not believe it.  Is it so difficult
For the spirit to conceive a face, a mouth?
The letters proceed from these black keys, and these black keys proceed
From my alphabetical fingers, ordering parts,

Parts, bits, cogs, the shining multiples.
I am dying as I sit.  I lose a dimension.
Trains roar in my ears, departures, departures!
The silver track of time empties into the distance,
The white sky empties of its promise, like a cup.
These are my feet, these mechanical echoes.
Tap, tap, tap, steel pegs.  I am found wanting.

This is a disease I carry home, this is a death.
Again, this is a death.  Is it the air,
The particles of destruction I **** up?  Am I a pulse
That wanes and wanes, facing the cold angel?
Is this my lover then?  This death, this death?
As a child I loved a lichen-bitten name.
Is this the one sin then, this old dead love of death?

THIRD VOICE:
I remember the minute when I knew for sure.
The willows were chilling,
The face in the pool was beautiful, but not mine--
It had a consequential look, like everything else,
And all I could see was dangers:  doves and words,
Stars and showers of gold--conceptions, conceptions!
I remember a white, cold wing

And the great swan, with its terrible look,
Coming at me, like a castle, from the top of the river.
There is a snake in swans.
He glided by; his eye had a black meaning.
I saw the world in it--small, mean and black,
Every little word hooked to every little word, and act to act.
A hot blue day had budded into something.

I wasn't ready.  The white clouds rearing
Aside were dragging me in four directions.
I wasn't ready.
I had no reverence.
I thought I could deny the consequence--
But it was too late for that.  It was too late, and the face
Went on shaping itself with love, as if I was ready.

SECOND VOICE:
It is a world of snow now.  I am not at home.
How white these sheets are.  The faces have no features.
They are bald and impossible, like the faces of my children,
Those little sick ones that elude my arms.
Other children do not touch me:  they are terrible.
They have too many colors, too much life.  They are not quiet,
Quiet, like the little emptinesses I carry.

I have had my chances.  I have tried and tried.
I have stitched life into me like a rare *****,
And walked carefully, precariously, like something rare.
I have tried not to think too hard.  I have tried to be natural.
I have tried to be blind in love, like other women,
Blind in my bed, with my dear blind sweet one,
Not looking, through the thick dark, for the face of another.

I did not look.  But still the face was there,
The face of the unborn one that loved its perfections,
The face of the dead one that could only be perfect
In its easy peace, could only keep holy so.
And then there were other faces.  The faces of nations,
Governments, parliaments, societies,
The faceless faces of important men.

It is these men I mind:
They are so jealous of anything that is not flat!  They are jealous gods
That would have the whole world flat because they are.
I see the Father conversing with the Son.
Such flatness cannot but be holy.
'Let us make a heaven,' they say.
'Let us flatten and launder the grossness from these souls.'

FIRST VOICE:
I am calm.  I am calm.  It is the calm before something awful:
The yellow minute before the wind walks, when the leaves
Turn up their hands, their pallors.  It is so quiet here.
The sheets, the faces, are white and stopped, like clocks.
Voices stand back and flatten.  Their visible hieroglyphs
Flatten to parchment screens to keep the wind off.
They paint such secrets in Arabic, Chinese!

I am dumb and brown.  I am a seed about to break.
The brownness is my dead self, and it is sullen:
It does not wish to be more, or different.
Dusk hoods me in blue now, like a Mary.
O color of distance and forgetfulness!--
When will it be, the second when Time breaks
And eternity engulfs it, and I drown utterly?

I talk to myself, myself only, set apart--
Swabbed and lurid with disinfectants, sacrificial.
Waiting lies heavy on my lids.  It lies like sleep,
Like a big sea.  Far off, far off, I feel the first wave tug
Its cargo of agony toward me, inescapable, tidal.
And I, a shell, echoing on this white beach
Face the voices that overwhelm, the terrible element.

THIRD VOICE:
I am a mountain now, among mountainy women.
The doctors move among us as if our bigness
Frightened the mind.  They smile like fools.
They are to blame for what I am, and they know it.
They hug their flatness like a kind of health.
And what if they found themselves surprised, as I did?
They would go mad with it.

And what if two lives leaked between my thighs?
I have seen the white clean chamber with its instruments.
It is a place of shrieks.  It is not happy.
'This is where you will come when you are ready.'
The night lights are flat red moons.  They are dull with blood.
I am not ready for anything to happen.
I should have murdered this, that murders me.

FIRST VOICE:
There is no miracle more cruel than this.
I am dragged by the horses, the iron hooves.
I last.  I last it out.  I accomplish a work.
Dark tunnel, through which hurtle the visitations,
The visitations, the manifestations, the startled faces.
I am the center of an atrocity.
What pains, what sorrows must I be mothering?

Can such innocence **** and ****?  It milks my life.
The trees wither in the street.  The rain is corrosive.
I taste it on my tongue, and the workable horrors,
The horrors that stand and idle, the slighted godmothers
With their hearts that tick and tick, with their satchels of instruments.
I shall be a wall and a roof, protecting.
I shall be a sky and a hill of good:  O let me be!

A power is growing on me, an old tenacity.
I am breaking apart like the world.  There is this blackness,
This ram of blackness.  I fold my hands on a mountain.
The air is thick.  It is thick with this working.
I am used.  I am drummed into use.
My eyes are squeezed by this blackness.
I see nothing.

SECOND VOICE:
I am accused.  I dream of massacres.
I am a garden of black and red agonies.  I drink them,
Hating myself, hating and fearing.  And now the world conceives
Its end and runs toward it, arms held out in love.
It is a love of death that sickens everything.
A dead sun stains the newsprint.  It is red.
I lose life after life.  The dark earth drinks them.

She is the vampire of us all.  So she supports us,
Fattens us, is kind.  Her mouth is red.
I know her.  I know her intimately--
Old winter-face, old barren one, old time bomb.
Men have used her meanly.  She will eat them.
Eat them, eat them, eat them in the end.
The sun is down.  I die.  I make a death.

FIRST VOICE:
Who is he, this blue, furious boy,
Shiny and strange, as if he had hurtled from a star?
He is looking so angrily!
He flew into the room, a shriek at his heel.
The blue color pales.  He is human after all.
A red lotus opens in its bowl of blood;
They are stitching me up with silk, as if I were a material.

What did my fingers do before they held him?
What did my heart do, with its love?
I have never seen a thing so clear.
His lids are like the lilac-flower
And soft as a moth, his breath.
I shall not let go.
There is no guile or warp in him.  May he keep so.

SECOND VOICE:
There is the moon in the high window.  It is over.
How winter fills my soul!  And that chalk light
Laying its scales on the windows, the windows of empty offices,
Empty schoolrooms, empty churches.  O so much emptiness!
There is this cessation.  This terrible cessation of everything.
These bodies mounded around me now, these polar sleepers--
What blue, moony ray ices their dreams?

I feel it enter me, cold, alien, like an instrument.
And that mad, hard face at the end of it, that O-mouth
Open in its gape of perpetual grieving.
It is she that drags the blood-black sea around
Month after month, with its voices of failure.
I am helpless as the sea at the end of her string.
I am restless.  Restless and useless.  I, too, create corpses.

I shall move north.  I shall move into a long blackness.
I see myself as a shadow, neither man nor woman,
Neither a woman, happy to be like a man, nor a man
Blunt and flat enough to feel no lack.  I feel a lack.
I hold my fingers up, ten white pickets.
See, the darkness is leaking from the cracks.
I cannot contain it.  I cannot contain my life.

I shall be a heroine of the peripheral.
I shall not be accused by isolate buttons,
Holes in the heels of socks, the white mute faces
Of unanswered letters, coffined in a letter case.
I shall not be accused, I shall not be accused.
The clock shall not find me wanting, nor these stars
That rivet in place abyss after abyss.

THIRD VOICE:
I see her in my sleep, my red, terrible girl.
She is crying through the glass that separates us.
She is crying, and she is furious.
Her cries are hooks that catch and grate like cats.
It is by these hooks she climbs to my notice.
She is crying at the dark, or at the stars
That at such a distance from us shine and whirl.

I think her little head is carved in wood,
A red, hard wood, eyes shut and mouth wide open.
And from the open mouth issue sharp cries
Scratching at my sleep like arrows,
Scratching at my sleep, and entering my side.
My daughter has no teeth.  Her mouth is wide.
It utters such dark sounds it cannot be good.

FIRST VOICE:
What is it that flings these innocent souls at us?
Look, they are so exhausted, they are all flat out
In their canvas-sided cots, names tied to their wrists,
The little silver trophies they've come so far for.
There are some with thick black hair, there are some bald.
Their skin tints are pink or sallow, brown or red;
They are beginning to remember their differences.

I think they are made of water; they have no expression.
Their features are sleeping, like light on quiet water.
They are the real monks and nuns in their identical garments.
I see them showering like stars on to the world--
On India, Africa, America, these miraculous ones,
These pure, small images.  They smell of milk.
Their footsoles are untouched.  They are walkers of air.

Can nothingness be so prodigal?
Here is my son.
His wide eye is that general, flat blue.
He is turning to me like a little, blind, bright plant.
One cry.  It is the hook I hang on.
And I am a river of milk.
I am a warm hill.

SECOND VOICE:
I am not ugly.  I am even beautiful.
The mirror gives back a woman without deformity.
The nurses give back my clothes, and an identity.
It is usual, they say, for such a thing to happen.
It is usual in my life, and the lives of others.
I am one in five, something like that.  I am not hopeless.
I am beautiful as a statistic.  Here is my lipstick.

I draw on the old mouth.
The red mouth I put by with my identity
A day ago, two days, three days ago.  It was a Friday.
I do not even need a holiday; I can go to work today.
I can love my husband, who will understand.
Who will love me through the blur of my deformity
As if I had lost an eye, a leg, a tongue.

And so I stand, a little sightless.  So I walk
Away on wheels, instead of legs, they serve as well.
And learn to speak with fingers, not a tongue.
The body is resourceful.
The body of a starfish can grow back its arms
And newts are prodigal in legs.  And may I be
As prodigal in what lacks me.

THIRD VOICE:
She is a small island, asleep and peaceful,
And I am a white ship hooting:  Goodbye, goodbye.
The day is blazing.  It is very mournful.
The flowers in this room are red and tropical.
They have lived behind glass all their lives, they have been cared for
        tenderly.
Now they face a winter of white sheets, white faces.
There is very little to go into my suitcase.

There are the clothes of a fat woman I do not know.
There is my comb and brush.  There is an emptiness.
I am so vulnerable suddenly.
I am a wound walking out of hospital.
I am a wound that they are letting go.
I leave my health behind.  I leave someone
Who would adhere to me:  I undo her fingers like bandages:  I go.

SECOND VOICE:
I am myself again.  There are no loose ends.
I am bled white as wax, I have no attachments.
I am flat and virginal, which means nothing has happened,
Nothing that cannot be erased, ripped up and scrapped, begun again.
There little black twigs do not think to bud,
Nor do these dry, dry gutters dream of rain.
This woman who meets me in windows--she is neat.

So neat she is transparent, like a spirit.
how shyly she superimposes her neat self
On the inferno of African oranges, the heel-hung pigs.
She is deferring to reality.
It is I.  It is I--
Tasting the bitterness between my teeth.
The incalculable malice of the everyday.

FIRST VOICE:
How long can I be a wall, keeping the wind off?
How long can I be
Gentling the sun with the shade of my hand,
Intercepting the blue bolts of a cold moon?
The voices of loneliness, the voices of sorrow
Lap at my back ineluctably.
How shall it soften them, this little lullaby?

How long can I be a wall around my green property?
How long can my hands
Be a bandage to his hurt, and my words
Bright birds in the sky, consoling, consoling?
It is a terrible thing
To be so open:  it is as if my heart
Put on a face and walked into the world.

THIRD VOICE:
Today the colleges are drunk with spring.
My black gown is a little funeral:
It shows I am serious.
The books I carry wedge into my side.
I had an old wound once, but it is healing.
I had a dream of an island, red with cries.
It was a dream, and did not mean a thing.

FIRST VOICE:
Dawn flowers in the great elm outside the house.
The swifts are back.  They are shrieking like paper rockets.
I hear the sound of the hours
Widen and die in the hedgerows.  I hear the moo of cows.
The colors replenish themselves, and the wet
Thatch smokes in the sun.
The narcissi open white faces in the orchard.

I am reassured.  I am reassured.
These are the clear bright colors of the nursery,
The talking ducks, the happy lambs.
I am simple again.  I believe in miracles.
I do not believe in those terrible children
Who injure my sleep with their white eyes, their fingerless hands.
They are not mine.  They do not belong to me.

I shall meditate upon normality.
I shall meditate upon my little son.
He does not walk. &n
Kwanele Nov 2014
forgetting you? cannot do it with a sober mind. 
I'd rather fall into a drug induced coma than try to forget you with all my pieces intact, my mind intact, my heart in place. 
I want to feel forgetting as a cathartic emotion than a numbing aid. 
I don't want to feel you. I feel you through the nothingness and it is overwhelming. 
weeping willows weeping willows. weeping in the rain the wind carrying the weeping willows as they sing. my heart weeping for you. my willow you. 
drug induced coma; forgetting her ; without the nothingness..
Black loom the crags of the uplands behind me,
Dark are the sands of the far-stretching shore.
Dim are the pathways and rocks that remind me
Sadly of years in the lost Nevermore.

Soft laps the ocean on wave-polish'd boulder,
Sweet is the sound and familiar to me;
Here, with her head gently bent to my shoulder,
Walk'd I with Unda, the Bride of the Sea.

Bright was the morn of my youth when I met her,
Sweet as the breeze that blew o'er the brine.
Swift was I captur'd in Love's strongest fetter,
Glad to be here, and she glad to be mine.

Never a question ask'd I where she wander'd,
Never a question ask'd she of my birth:
Happy as children, we thought not nor ponder'd,
Glad of the bounty of ocean and earth.

Once when the moonlight play'd soft 'mid the billows,
High on the cliff o'er the waters we stood,
Bound was her hair with a garland of willows,
Pluck'd by the fount in the bird-haunted wood.

Strangely she gaz'd on the surges beneath her,
Charm'd with the sound or entranc'd by the light:
Then did the waves a wild aspect bequeath her,
Stern as the ocean and weird as the night.

Coldly she left me, astonish'd and weeping,
Standing alone 'mid the legions she bless'd:
Down, ever downward, half gliding, half creeping,
Stole the sweet Unda in oceanward quest.

Calm grew the sea, and tumultuous beating
Turn'd to a ripple as Unda the fair
Trod the wet sands in affectionate greeting,
Beckon'd to me, and no longer was there!

Long did I pace by the banks where she vanish'd,
High climb'd the moon and descended again.
Grey broke the dawn till the sad night was banish'd,
Still ach'd my soul with its infinite pain.

All the wide world have I search'd for my darling;
Scour'd the far desert and sail'd distant seas.
Once on the wave while the tempest was snarling,
Flash'd a fair face that brought quiet and ease.

Ever in restlessness onward I stumble
Seeking and pining scarce heeding my way.
Now have I stray'd where the wide waters rumble,
Back to the scene of the lost yesterday.

Lo! the red moon from the ocean's low hazes
Rises in ominous grandeur to view;
Strange is its face as my tortur'd eye gazes
O'er the vast reaches of sparkle and blue.

Straight from the moon to the shore where I'm sighing
Grows a bright bridge made of wavelets and beams.
Frail it may be, yet how simple the trying,
Wand'ring from earth to the orb of sweet dreams.

What is yon face in the moonlight appearing;
Have I at last found the maiden that fled?
Out on the beam-bridge my footsteps are nearing
Her whose sweet beckoning hastens my tread.

Current's surround me, and drowsily swaying,
Far on the moon-path I seek the sweet face.
Eagerly, hasting, half panting, half praying,
Forward I reach for the vision of grace.

Murmuring waters about me are closing,
Soft the sweet vision advances to me.
Done are my trials; my heart is reposing
Safe with my Unda, the Bride of the Sea.
softcomponent May 2014
Find the lighter, use it as a lighthouse on a walk below the wall you watch along the wave-formations. Who Wants a Cold One? a Coors Light ad corrects.. When it comes to your home, the little things matter.. an insurance ad blares.. my computer is infected with 3rd party applications unremovable to my meagre tech-ability.. there is a hero as Joseph Campbell once theorized.. in myself like a sick bastardly virus waiting for moments to prove to me "I AM THE SAVIOR, I AM THE CHRIST, I AM THE WARLORD, MICE, MAN, AND VICE".. the windows of opportunity close, I am left waiting the door

& the elevator.

Thirty-thousand years ago, there was nothing but a breeze.. a viscous breeze across chill-spined pterodactyls.. warm-under-the-jungle-brush tyrannosaurus rex, and to think one day I will be just a legend in bone..
Charlotte said she thinks of death and so did Jen. They sat next to the all-you-can-eat and discussed the inevitable. I was sour and playful with no-will-to-understand, just reminding my hair of breezy summer days of 10, thinking of strangeness, of place I was in.

When it's quiet sometimes, I think of old dreams.. dreams I sunk below drown-level as a child in bed and belief. Both mommy and daddy were arguing in the kitchen, this was 7 or 8.. they argued so often one could hear mom begin to cry sometimes, and dad I could see in minds-eye with a grimace so closed and so creased he was hurt and yet honest.. I did not understand so I hid under-stood-silhouettes, oh adulthood..

once in dream I was in pulsing green graveyard like crayon realism strobe lights, tombstones all-round and faint-buzz of outside and one of those strange balded henchmen of badguy Jafar from Disney's Aladdin came peaking outta nowhere with curled eyebrow and baggy one-thousand-one Arabian nightlives parachute pants, curled toes brown-beige moccasins to.. he let out conniving 'HEUHEE!' and slapped me right-side cheek and I JOLTED up bedwise in real time to feel actual physical sting for a few lingered seconds then the sobs of poor mother outside.. I never remembered a dream so clearly again.. they all come, Pro-Found, and dizzy away after hour or two for rest of eternity or perhaps to Place I Can Visit at Death to Review Every Vision and I wonder... when your life flashes before your eyes and the light is encroaching, scenes of mother, brother, father, son, daughter, best-friend, party, break-up, heartbreak, slip-fall, first-sip, first-drag, last-leg, first-kiss, first-hit, first-game, fear, love,  HATE, wait.. do the Dreams come to? Are they all flesh-ed before your eyes as you pass into Light? Are they brought to direct remembrance as you cross the border with Passport of Gods and a Goddess (and which Picture appears on the Page)..?

I remember the old eczema taking bits of skin to carpets round-town and round-lower-mainland to disgust of friends old and new-- this was era where confidence ate itself in mirrors, the sober reality of ugly-ness chiseling away at my Goodness Attempts.. All That Pointless Pain was no Exception nor a Rule, it just **** Happens every once-and-again to the sound of life farting. I used to miss school for feet so impossible to walk on, pussing and bleeding and staining the sheets, shoe soles, carpets, and soul.. limp thru the hallways of Brooks Secondary feeling like bad flavor additive to multicultural Planet Earth-- sleeping 'til the bell rang drinking coffee singing songs I said '**** the ******* educational system and **** me I'm so flatlined..' someday I felt things would really get better and lucky young me I was right.

A half-decade later, I am 21 and hoping, floating, free in the breeze as the wings I have grown keep on wishing the subsistence down. The girl, whoever-she-might-as-well-be, sits immediately vertical chatting frantically to boy with a bit of a cowlick slouching on-up over a bundle of colored paperwork. It seems late in the season for homework, and assume they may have some affiliation with a crazy-hep computer design group in the tradition of Nouevau Silicon Valley.... I sit at my laptop, inching a word a million cubic millimeters closer to God or Divinity or Crescendo or A Bunch More ******* You'll End Up Ignoring---

It's a sunny day, the rain having slathered-off into obscurity somewhere with the Monsoons when the Sun gave the Moon a Soft Slap and the poor purity white-kid went off whimpering, bleeding nose-- I sat, the other night, playing another Grand Strategy game as Tom divided his time between a vaulted and damaged lover, his labor, and his life (friends, food, video-games, vice)... Chai, old Chai the Thai Guy mentioned past his nose in previous iterations of Depictions sat and described his pins-and-needles upset at his bosses at one his three many jobs.. desperately firing text-messages into receiving-space-panel and reflect and back unto Tom's smartphone dash asking him to order a six-pack from a local delivery service cuz his adrenal was giving him heartpain with hurt, and Tom being Busy as All-Ways Tom Is wasn't able to decipher the scramble in-time to make contact before closure of the liquor stores.. poor not-so-poor Chai at first felt castrated at realization he would miss the 11 PM dot-time, but didn't mind as he rendezvoused with Tom and I at Willows Beach where Tom reminded him of a whiskey he'd bought sitting counter-wise at his place.. we kissed a few Mary Janes rightsideup, dragging our butts in the sand to discuss what was wrong (each of us had a problem that night, save for perhaps a less-vocal Tom, I describing my annoyance that a lazy consensus had erupted in my sorry-hometown between my sorta-friends and friends-of-friends that my writing and sharing my writing was arrogant and I an arrogant *** for sharing and I just confounded that they would find my passions so trivial-- perhaps jealousy, perhaps complacency and judgement-for-lack-of-anything-better-to-do and ah **** em all if they think like that, I'll write and be the arrogant me they think I am and share 'til I'm blue in the face and dead perhaps for outspoken intellectualism in their autocratic pointless-waste worldviews.. sad that I dislike them only on the basis they disliked me first..)

I had planned to stay late and leave early-morn (5 or 6 AM) to catch a first-off morning bus back home and sleep, hoping for most part to avoid the shattered-***-mess of a home I was living in.
About 2 days ago, give or take, a water-line for the laundry machine had erupted to soak our entirely-carpeted basement suite, forcing the poor new landlord (a sweetheart of a man named Ron having just taken possession of the house from previous owner on May 1st and, it seems, left 'holding the bag' as they'd call it in day-trading-investment-lingo) to tear out the entirely-soaked carpet and replace it with sensible laminate flooring and rendering the entire suite virtually unlivable for indefinite-few-days and so for me work and friends and especially writing become a welcome reprieve to I, a first world Refu-Jeez.. us, so terribly-off I sip a latte near sunny panorama windows-so-clear-they're-not-there overlooking the crosses of Yates and Blanshard with European church of Gothic architectural style poking heedlessly into empty-open blue.. ironically and strangely there is a liquor store quite literally right next door, and's one I shop at often for its decent prices (God is Dead or Just Drinking to Cope with Sartre and Kierkegaard's Ultimate Thesis) (Kierkegaard especially '*** Kierkegaard seems a good and long friend of God the Almighty) (...I talk with such Judaeo-Christian Catholic rhetoric it never ceases to amaze myself as it bleeds to page..) (stranger thing is, tho, there is no beginning, no middle, no end.. you read or you are bored and either/or is just fine..)

There is some hypothesized crescendo-bliss Tech Singularity on the way in the try-dition of Ray Kurzweil and William Burroughs.. Oscar Wilde to.. (see The Soul of Man Under Socialism in essay-collect book De Profundis).. one day we will all be eternal happiness expressed in song and dance and LED erected-projections of Imperfect Universe (Our Imperfect Earth) with lives stuck on infinite repeat.. our idea of Paradise.. and for those with ability to remain rushed to cortisol (stress-the-best hormone) it will be Hell on Earth, so DRAB and THE SAME all the TIME and it's READ and it's WRITE and it's RIGHT.. the world runs faster with every passing day so desperate to discover the Globe is Flat so we can Hop Off the Other Side into what one might assume to be The Better Place.. elusively picking-up speed thinking 'closer now definitely closer now' unaware (or, secretly aware and unwilling to admit for what will one do when one cannot run?) they are Running in Circles Over and Over and Over and Over and Over Again... cannot take the hint in the fact the Pacific (same Pacific) has been crossed a hugeillion times, nor the same McDonald's in the Azores of Atlantic Portugal is the Same ******* McDonald's stopped-thru on the then-trillionth time last year... and all whilst the International Space Station remains muted up-above crossing 'round and 'round 'til the Jehovah'n Day of Judgement (Chris Hadfield now below with advice for how to run a little faster even blinded in one eye..) then there are the dying Prophets Predicting Industrial Collapse who preach upon the Mount of Internet Sinai Eternal and state "the world is now unsalvageable and we are all about to die.. if ever you wished to find Buddhistic Nirvanic Peace, now is the time so start meditating and imagine Death as New Life and Geopolitics as Game".. forever and ever and ever and ever.

It is only natural to find existence to be 'weird..' layered with Who's That's and giant What The ***** everywhichway you turn.. did it start in a Big Bang, will it end in a Big Crunch, Big Freeze, Big Bang.. ? all questions once ignored for certain ignorance and resurrected as questions concerning the Nature of the What The ***** (also known as 'Science').. and if it did start in a Big Bang, did I start in a Big Bang..? and if it does end in a Big Crunch, will I end in a Big Crunch..? am I a sudden flash of REAL in a Universe that isn't me..? or am I an entire Universe.. perhaps even more than that...? the questions pulse in youth like bad words or bullets. I once stayed up all-night thinking of infinity with my head soaring space-wise forever and ever and ever and I stopped in sudden panic thinking: I could lie here up all night and all day 'til the towered age of 37 (I was 14 at the time) and still be no further on the Universal Map than from thumb-tip-middle to thumb-nail so I wrapped up the attempt with a mix of fear and incredulity, went to school next-day exhausted and tried to explain it all to friends.. they got it, I suppose, but we were all 14 and played basketball instead (I imagined infinite-spinning-basketball on thumb of Michael Jordan).

It's always best describing life in form of Disembodied Poetics.. sure some Philistines won't understand '*** their minds are made of Clockwork, Digits, and Blockthought.. but the general psychic underly implied in all with human faculty will ring-a-ding-ding! and remember all such ancient thoughts and feels as forgotten as a child, locked away until the Spirit rose-up from a rosey thorn prickle to flower straight-up into a Rose! or so I hope as a one-of-many writers-- all of which will write so-as to speak on your behalf.. all floaty and marking a purpose.
Solent in Expiationem Animarum

Saint John the Apostle says: “Zefián, the computer of the Duoverse of the Verthian world, indicates the order of his creation of the world, according to the transcendental plant living matter, in the interstices of time itself that exists within sidereal time. Noting that matter and time, is governed by all mythological beings in a compartment with monotheism, will be defined by atavistic laws, which are the deity of the intense hiding place of procreation, endowing great contextual residences, for habitat and a world in which larger non-residential scales, which go from passerby between the lines of time, and cosmological phenomena, which in the Duoverse face vicissitudes of the stars and their physicality added to the arcs of memory and emotions. Thus the main task of how the structure of experience surpasses consciousness, to novelize the orthogonal movements of the Universe, but in a Vernarthian world with great explorations of matter, which are quantified and volatilized in the field of its ethereal existence. The laws will be governed by your Zefian computer, describing codes that will verify the fulfillment of pivots in the reactions of the universe, but with refractions when reasoning about the consummate phenomenon. Starting from here in the experienced biology that will overcome the laws of physics, since its value is above the limits that allow the bold line of gravity that bounces in the lines of time, and its distances promoting more discretion when resisting threats. of a possible tiring case, a product of some relative dominance not included in all worlds with each other, in some case that does not rescue us from loss of links of some omitted sidereal reminiscence, attracting us to a universe governed by hemicycles of merely material particles, and not existential biological ones. The dimensions emerge from the beginning of the same universe, but more delayed from the interval and the second limit of the space that rests, to inaugurate the one that comes. Being the orbit of translation twice rotating towards the sun, but nth times rotating on itself, to go out to another stellar dimension not present. Its geometry will be from the intendancy of the resumption of Cinnabar in Tsambika and Helleniká, to later cancel each other out, making their integration in Patmos, on the coast of Skalá, with curvatures that validate the nullity of successive expirations of material lives, between spiritual expirations alive.


Duoverso is born and will be reborn, every time the years are subject to the loss of everything quantifiable and not, under the light that will be lit on all the darkness, Zefián being, in paronymy in which they lack to appropriate the support and merit of to have it absorbed in the tabernacle of Vas Auric, in the privilege of nothingness itself and nobody, adding itself in what is preserved of the physical support of itself. For just sidereal speed, in which it will have to travel on its same axis of rotating time on itself, in paradoxical of the One-dimensional Beams, these coexisting with the same low and high universes, reconverted into angelic vital luminances, creating orbits and optics in the visions of Christian temporality. By empowering them to enable them in the overexcited that derive disorders of intermittency of memory and physics of time, to reinsert themselves in the sequence that inhabits the residual of the speed of the Beam, as a Theo-Philosophical entity, of cellular multiplicity or cells of seasonality. of retrograde times, for the independence of temporality, under the regime of the past made up of an unbelievable yesterday. Overcoming the conserved immediacy of conviction in the One-dimensional Beams (Kafersesuh), it is observed denser when every mortal admits to being due to integrating and later brooding, dissecting organic matter into inorganic matter, suspended in the richness of a world of Faith and Prayer, of the most anti-gregarious desert and lost in the world, but supported by hollow walls, which do not exist in Vernarthian emotional matter.

The movements being physical, they take us on conjectured layers to discern their magnitude, emphasizing the rigor of their measurement on us, instead, the ambivalence of Zefian, delivers in both chromatic the Dark and White Duoverse, under the reference of the behavioral alternations of the Diospyros, source of the arboreal, for the procreation granted in the hands of Leiak. Relying on this equational exercise, with less time to design for its genealogy, but rather on its apocalypse, reinstalled in abolished primary unknown spaces, to have it once again in the light of consciousness, recognized as an inert matter of the past, but living off the immanent eternity of nebulae that personalize the earring of the Caltrop, taking temporality, but not snatching any hand to tear it from his own.

Vernarth says: “In the rhetoric of the Universe-Duoverse theorem, it is worth noting the past with entity, present and future also, connected to the time of Verthian inspiration, Holderlin-Heidegger, on issues of physical habitability, as a complement to the entity, which anticipates the present/future in the vicinity of death in the past and future, but tangentially in lively whims of existentialism-mortality, for a way of being rented out at death, as a way of being, dwelling in death itself and in the act of embodiment having existed, but with its own mandate after having been rented. The Vernarthian World appears in this current, prolonging existence from non-existence, granting complementarity of more past existence, before an unlived death. Ontologically, This theory stems from the One-Dimensional Beams of Kafersesuh, in Ein Karem. Essentially Christian, as the matrix of existence between Ein Karem (Nativity of the Messiah) and Gethsemane, as an interconnection of materiality in metaphysical reflections, a product of the immaterial of life not lived, as an urgent sacrilegious death, and of the anticipated dimension of the life process- death-life of Christian Messianism.

Vernarth says: "with the slaves in my disparate hands, one picked up what the other was carrying. With my right hand, I took the Duoverso, and with the other my porter; I held my reins on the maxims of Elpenor, before falling to the cliff. One naughty day but with the worst pain in my chest, I went to see him in his room, and I structured him as an immortal, at the time of forming the world, "knowing not even being part of an identity" favoring him to be part of me. combustion and ignition due to the friction of the Universe on the Duoverse. Such was that fearlessness and affordability that it decorated me with unexpected tears of belonging by imprisoning me with superfluous boastfulness. But his courage will be mine, and he will have to anticipate being in the middle of grace, as in Gaugamela wounding my two hearts, one deleterious and the other not..., verbatim saying:

Says the Carrier: “I have to agree to your mandate my lord Vernarth, I have arranged my emetic knights to take him to the empyrean, more remote at nightfall. I know that my own death will also take him, for we are double lives loving death, which falls on a night given to the seventh Falangist soldier. In the midst of souls already disheartened by the misfortune of life, in the figure of eternal death that refuses to receive us discouraged "

Vernarth says: "I do not know if I am or will be brave, because I have forgotten to die, rather I do not know what it is ?, but in the midst of the horses and the hosts of the block, from the anvil of Gaugamela that I have not felt it again..., which is death after feeling my hands and legs severed, but not felt when appropriating some amputee. I know that among the Hypaspists we used umpteenth arrows to mobilize their war apparatus 665, but from the wasteland jump we gathered the delirium of the Falangist command in the Seleucid 666 row, rather detached from every man, in a substantial way in favor of the Alexandrian life, "Of course he was already in the hands of eternity, which hurts more than the tip of an arrow, even being unfaithful to his mortality"

and not in the Universe chained to its fractality, rather of its present-present of the new universe for those who make it negative of itself, towards a clone and neatness, granting it recklessness, who continues to sweep its entity, its dimension, its space, the distances, the matter to receive it in their being. Vernarth, besieges the discursive thinking, under the tides of the tenements and the fears of late emotionality, changing to all the best heroics of the follow and all the experiences of harassing flat lights of the target, in the necropolis that speak resurrected, not being chimera in the best leisure districts live, but immortal of a district..., with steps to constitutive slogans of "succumbed cities, but..., with eternity", connoting after all abolished transference, in eternity present between two beings of mortal rank, the Carrier and Vernarth, Vernarth and Heidegger, but here the last one bringing him the closest radiogram between expiration and eternity, with significant death (End and chaos) and eternity (creation), in the limbo-purgation ratio, as the source of the potion. His total contention and affinity in Heidegger's dialectic, passing through a moment that marks his reincarnation, in the rambling of finite eternity, moving away from Vernarthian ontological and metaphysical reasoning. It was attached magnetic in the Universe, feverish kiss in ambitions of the temporal Being, as substantial of perpetual objectivity towards the unworthy survivor of the Vernarthian theories. So far no similarity is compared to whoever wants it or not, it is part of any estimate or spreadsheet of a complex Duoverse, Within the emerging frontis of progeny, there are ranks derived towards the first to form compound swaths of shelters in the Camels Gigas, who from Jerusalem escorted them with their plantar consciences to Ein Karem, then returning to Gethsemane, to finish in the port of Jaffa. Originally arranged by the children of Israel and the strongholds; Vernarth, Saint John the Apostle, Eurydice, Raeder, and Petrobus with animality, Etréstles, and Kanti, to finally mention King David, who goes to his catafalque before leaving for Jaffa, to return winds to Patmos. Of this primogeniture, the legatee is Vernarth, being presented as co-first-born by giving his portion to Saint John the Apostle, for trust assets of the benefit of a third party for both, and granting the patriarchal and reimbursement to each of his inheritances, being of expeditious aim the liberation of the world that lodged them not authentically in the mediocrity of ascendant ancestors. This prerogative will be decisive to define the dimension of the Duoverse and the One-dimensional Beams as consanguinity, simultaneous nascent and mortal worldview, to radiate them in the beams that support the universe, and from this same, they are transferred to the vision of child-man, child-cherub., for the purpose of defining the Universe-Duoverse physically composed of four areas of its consistency. Time, Being, Divinity and the Four Wings of the Cherubim, as a concept of biodiversity in Lepidoptera, Bumblebees, Bees, Wasps, and Fireflies as tetra-winged animal entities, originating the warnings and impositions in cardinals and poles of their primogeniture, rising from chaos, up to now as mandatory Duoverso, constituting the alpha world, rising of the Animalia and the intermediate visions of the heights that guide the material essences of the imperishable spiritual elemental and structural physics. Being ineffable matter, in the stars that prostrate itself, before each pause of advent and of creations that ****** other creative flashes, in pursuit of a gnoseological doctrine, as a slavish instant, ending in another for the study of the meaning of conceiving in the diligently part of a new world, on the borders of the unknown and of repelled nothingness, suspecting itself in the living artery of nihilistic nothingness, without leaning towards nonexistence that endorses it, or perhaps from a twin Duoverso univitelino in the chaos of unfertilized nature..., rather empowered to the first heir by the law of the Messiah district. Allow yourself, in this way, in the face of this premise and history, to continue and be part of an establishing whole, looking for God in a new world and universe as well..., but shaking before the nothingness that sustains it, as a basic knowledge of value and of immobile Faith. The hypothesis Prosapy-Centric, defines blood lineage unifying the Duoverso as follows:

a)Eternal Existentialism:

He talks about how compassionate creation is and its factotum, that it will be better that way. At the entrance to the Vernarth mouth, within its buccal cubic meters, the Zig Zag Universe, the promoter that caused the Duoverse, broke out. Here your thoughts of eternity are born; not from your brain and discernment, psyche or mind. It exists in a present that will be distributed without end or beginning, in the holistic of the anticipated existence of the being itself, so that everything holistically arises from the mouth of Vernarth, becoming the light of his luminance-ejector thought, being in some way the Zigzag universe that emerges from the outgoing access of its mouth and that manifests itself in some change of quantum physics in a state of hyper-connectivity and always present. The Zig Zag, coexists in eclectic variability of angles, creating regularities in its time and displacement. For the sake of results and translational parallelism as a promoter of the Duoverse, based on the holistic that brings together the effect of the word-fact, but eminently aimed at the morphology of extra language of intellect, rather in the kinetics of the language of human zigzag and physical-material, typical in various line segments of lightning and space storms, resembling his lost and bleeding soul in full battle at the site of Arbela. The other meaning is his salvation from the Council of Patmos, being already Installed in the Eclectic and invisible portal of the Evangelist of Saint John, levitating in his sacred basaltic cavern in Katapausis, in the Patmos archipelago (Koumeterium Messolonghi, Chapter 16 / page 114. Editorial Palibrio- USA). They would find themselves in communion with the archaean clan, which would resemble its proper ectoplasm; thus each one forming a unique part in the masonry dictated to redirect them towards their messianic labors at this stage of the ascension. Vernarth; is aware that he will have to enter the cave, after having ceased his work on standby for three months. He continues to fester in myriad wars and parapsychological regressions, he will remain in a daze to dedicate himself to the beautiful landscapes open towards a horizon..., a neighbor to Palaeolithic and astronomical painting. In the flashes of mathematical prayer, you will capture the spiritual intensity that inspired Saint John to build the temple near his cave of the Apocalypse on the island of Patmos. The saint appears only on certain days looking at him from afar to encourage him in his progress..., Portal Eclectic and invisible is the facet of the face of light, after the invisible that manages to be appreciated with the principle of transferring its connectivity of the immaterial with the material, but done in the finished quality of "Merciful", deriving everything in what supports the splendor of the facts and their objective analysis, by no means the same, because the Zigzag universe, originates theory or thoughts from the perspective of external language and integrally unites it through the optimal results, always imponderable and categorical to follow them and attract them to eternal spiritual good. Being exhaustive of the fact of action, although it is subdivided into executability..., it will continue to be timeless, therefore eternal, in the hands of a universe of thick eternity and stationary death.

The final communion of Zig Zag with the Duoverse, will make this key momentum to replace the Universe of the former Vernarthian world, for inflections of the continuous present, more in the distance of the limits that have to originate than by a simple gesturing stupidity of disbelief, abounding more than a universe that is created in eternity, and that will never again resurface as a physical dimension. The successive potentiality of this theory of holism subtracts actions and not facts, since it always culminates in the limit of infinity, always beginning and never-ending, to then restart in a present that is reintegrated into the access of the oropharyngeal and non-cerebral embouchure, since it has of limiting itself in its shock and subsequent confusion of language-emotion and feeling, to change all eternal emotion, always going hand in hand with the unequivocal and assertive light,

b) Being Universal multi-evocation:

Over Rhodes the auroras could be seen retreating, to attract the new luminances crossing between the atmospheres of the ancient worlds, with stars that were ordered among others, descending at great speed from the Universe, fascinating all Greece, coming from celestial bodies that brought from great Relative distances and proximity between the Duoverso and its satellite widening, allowing to grant subsistence, and routes to the nascent species of the Vernarthian sub-mythology. The Sabbath energy Light is overbreathed repair; here Saint John the Apostle influences through the conduit of the Cinnabar towards the Light of the Mashiach, with the intemperance of life on drops of crystallized water as gifts of Taphoric Light, with synoptic signs of transformation of all the green grass growing like a beard on the slopes of the Willows, where Saint John the Apostle goes back to prayer prayers; so such in repetitive sentences and prayers towards the Universe, which were falling as it was on Mount Tabor in the Transfiguration. All this in the fervor of the willow chins that fell from the galaxies, with their cascades one after another in orderly colophons of fervor making the sky a great source of Moshaic and Elijah voices. (Moses and Elijah) to Christianize the holy oils of the radiant glory of the Universe that was complemented by the Heliac Ortho that was appreciated in different coefficients according to this new position of the parameter of Greece, observed from the Constellation of Pisces, being symbolized as piece as SOS, since Eratosthenes tells us about the fish that saved Derceto (Goddess of Assyrian mythology), after falling into a large lagoon. Seeing therefore in the sky as Fum Al Samakah, Arabic for “snout of the fish” (or Fomalhaut star from the Greek translation). Pisces being bright and of the great dimension to mold it as a whole iris, which was rooted from the formal pelagic accent, towards a spectral affinity of the Duoverse, like leaves of Willow temperatures, on the reflection of the Multi-evocation. For antithetical referendum of the Pleiades between light-years that diminish behind the stars of the magnetic field and its exo-planet. It is necessary to consider that in the wisdom of God, there would be his ordering conscience, on each constellation, and then detach itself before each other that guards each one in centuries of light-years, and in each one of the children as light-years of millions, but of numerical present time quantum; that is to say, all translation on average over ups and downs of spatiality and in remote ages, to zero or from null numerals in the integrality of millions of non-existent light-years, but accumulated and equidistant between the Universal Being and Multi-evocation. An example of cartographic observation shows us Greece at Latitude 39.074208 and Longitude 21.824312, influencing the Duoverse as a complement to the rise of Greece with the latitude of the Heliac Ortho, being Sirius eleven days after the Ekadashi and eleven days before the other at 10 °, Maximizing the light herbalism of the unconscious, to systematize the rise of the Universe imbuing Greece. Refulgent and small electromagnetic systems, led by the Divinity, are freeing themselves of all the units that bind in the minimal Units that can expand with the apostolic energy, rather than a trans-human receiver, in blocks of circulation of waves, related to a Defined spatiality, divine and with its own energy of opening of small worlds of provision of light, and radiation emitted by the deleterious convex of invisible essences in properties that are released from overflowing stagnations of creation, and from the skylights that are more distant than the wavelengths than from a breath of Demiourgy in the chemistry of all multidimensional hyper-existential between frequencies of energy widely displaceable by lines of how many..., in static energy of rest. Ultra colors intensify on the coasts of Rhodes, as a sulfur photoelectric effect of Cinnabar, formalizing mechanics in those sedimentary particles, which undulate in anticipation of the precise amalgamation of both universes, evolving towards the matrix of origin of physical and non-biological state and period, but of eternal divine inspiration, from the mouths of Vernarth, as a resurrected Being electro vigorous, dwelling spacious and sinuosities of curvature and psychic spiraling, The Vernarthian nature will call this phenomenon the Son, since it is the similarity of the halo in the Taphoric Light and in its effect of the baptismal of this Christian Universe called Duoverse, in accordance with the presence of Saint John the Apostle light, among the attending raptor niveous. strangers, arrival-departure and between the nebula of pendency in the nimbus gaseous clouds of fields that mutually heard each other recognizing each other..., leaving only Saint John the Apostle in the perfection of the sky as a universal and Duoversal shadow, first of all being of light being baptized, crucified and risen-ascended, in the metaphysical transfer of his body, as a universal body, as a quantum point between the earth and the sky, between the universe and the Duoverse as a complement of gaseous and spiritual atmospheric earth. Ministering in the judicious and prophetic occlusion, being a juridical part among the myriad bundles of Constellar Pisces that supported the transfigured and converted prophets, before a brand new universe, "Duoverso", witness to the amazement at the proximity of the multi-evoked Universal Being.

c) Reflection space (Light-matter)

The Duoverse having been pulled from its entrails from Vernarth's mouth, and objectual free fall is noticed after disengaging from the quantum Universe, rather than an elusive cacophony that unfolds separated from their bodies in all dimensions, except Vernarthian time, Alluding to the stoning him so that he ignores himself in agony and returns to look for him to revive him as Space-Light, in the presence of matter reflected from himself, which will unfold throughout the Hellenic Panagias, from Kímolos to Tsambika, to make the curves the direct passage that once again bends time towards a fragmented dimensionality. Barefoot was the apostle with Vernarth in the three quarters of the axioms and algorithms, where the conceptuality would overcome the low calculation of what was already ministered by them. Creating space for lapses in dreams of the Stairs, with steps of Topaz, in this particular case of Saint John the Apostle, "seeing open skies and angels of God go up and down on the son of man." Here some sidereal Solar gleams are illuminated that have nights for a sunny day, Vernarth resting on the side of the Monastery with a stone on its head and dozing to dream like Etréstles in the Hexagonal Baptistery of the Shepherds in Ein Karem, but of the compact sweetness of the famous luminous Cinnabar ascending vertically where the Yahvic Being, who was presented to him as the Abrahamic patriarchate nexus. Endowing him with celestial dreams about stones that inherit west and east towards the north noon, in space of hallucinations of Jacob's subconscious, for the satisfaction of the luminous pictorial ligament. Thus, a timid but decisive reflex pointer of space and reflection is detected, which includes fragments of spectrum and tonalities of a machine unconscious, to raise the Duoverse in a depressive day of the scathing moment.

d) Physical energy (molecular entropy)

From the bases of Theoskepasti, the physical system emerged in two sums after the movements of the pendular censers that exceed the elliptical of the Cinnabar and the potential of the ejectable force field, for ductility of its forces that emanated from the triad with the archpriest, helping him Etréstles and Kanti, who would take them to the Hellenika Necropolis. They make of their golden bodies the ephemeral speed mechanized in the originality of the homily system, to break in the guardian friction of the gravitational axial of the body of Light of the cinnabar, which received the sulfur kinetics of the defective organic matter that was wrapped in a bizarre alloy of sulfur light, and in all the forces gathered, not rubbing with the cinnabar obelisk, already invaded by the energy that made it superficial, between the shell of the Panagia Theoskepasti covering and the strange normality that made them physical-organic. No scrubbing would continue the movement of the fleeting angle of the anvil of Hephaestus, but the static on the surface, lay unchanged before the forces of the back and forth of the molecules that sank late, shooting from the pendular area of his bowl and then starting with full power for new angles that will take advantage of the mechanics of the forge and the friction clean and **** before the joint, and the resistance of the reactivation of the second period of the movement, to forward them to Tsambika in the response signal. Quantifying later between the inferiority and the intangible shock reaction in the light radiosities of the cinnabar re imparted towards Rhodes, forming resistance, but with immanent entropy, with a high degree of fineness, in such a way that once the conservation rays are fired, the response to Rhodes will come from Kímolos with the particles and combustions of sulfurous gas and mercury, generating entropy of two quantum and physical times between the Dodecanese and Cyclades, knowing that the inert matter is inactivated alive, thus envisioning the contingent presence of iron in the geology of both islands, with more than eighty percent, and of gravitating oxygen for the Vas Auric and its materialization, as a ****** impression reducing its physical dimension and enlarging its water content in pelagic beings of the Aegean. This would suggest the homogeneity of both island territories, appease the conception of substitutions that frolic from north to south, to break their normal balance, depleting what is island land towards oceanic land. In this way they will be mixed entropically for a new generation of fertile life that balances in chaos, already in the hands of Saint John the Apostle and Vernarth, in the main nave of the Monastery that seemed to oscillate atomized and vanished, but then atomically restructured, slyly dividing the canons of traditional entropy, and making it disproportionate to the biodiversity ordering of the sterile and the fertile, reordering itself as a mutable force excluding the reality of act-effect, invested in the integrity of life-death-life, as a molecular target in a double physical dimensional unit, making the prospective universe by splitting from any other format, to become another and another physical dimension. Universe-Duoverse, they shake like two spheres, almost joining each other, but separating into heterogeneous classics, as a panegyric, under the invocation of Conviction and Faith. The universes self-recomposed and redistribute themselves before our eyes, but before the consistent devotion of this homily, it makes them astonishing and phenomenal (everything that happens is recomposed - if the tree fractures, but then it straightens re-fractured, before our eyes being recomposed). Thus the chaos of the Universe is resolved, appropriating a new sequence of continuous creation, starting from the same creative property, but of molecular entropy, almost in adverse defect, but of constriction of the yielded body, to be incorporated into the Cinnabar beam of light. dynamic, generating ignition at the ends of each part of the structure obelisk, in order to release and stimulate on the absorbent..., of the Hexagonal Birthright in Tsambika,

e) One-Dimensional Beams

From the hexagon, everything is dimensioned on the peaks that can be seen in the starry nights from the curved kilometers of Bethlehem. Everything goes on top of the desert mountains and valleys, above the vagaries of climatic heights, and landslides of an entire believing community and its followers. In twelve advancing camels, of which the first six are exclusive to the Birthright, and then the seventh Giga camel is from King David of Bethlehem.

The beams are the architectural support portion of the physical-ethereal God and of his ethereal-physical word, supposedly of advent in grazing of the hardwoods, and the secret anomalies of a new Aramaic message, anticipating the vigor of insects and birds that were grouped together. in the journey that goes back and forth. The Beams are stars of heaven sustained by the Cherubim and the Archangels, through the paths of conversion and the support of the Christian time; haughty and implacable hegemony for the propaedeutic of phylogeny, but more on the very chemistry of creation carrying its winged Lepidoptera tetra, pheromones, and the obfuscation of an elemental nascent child in his own evangelical philosophy from an inter-sword dimensionality, and of the gloom of a manger shouted Kafersesuh, before compendiums of two pyramidal landmarks of inflection of his word in created animals, in the affinities of the world and the Animalia, personalizing shepherds carriers of pollinations, totalizing the generational of the language that is concealed so far, as well as the turns in the musks, and their legitimacies from the Baptistery of the Shepherds in Ein Karem, parabolizing their nomenclature and Polygonia of a child made man, already coexisting! but representing himself as a lifeless man in the fullness of a child of a distinguished canon. and his legitimacies of the Baptistery of the Shepherds in Ein Karem, already coexist! but representing himself as a lifeless man in the fullness of a child of a distinguished canon, that followed him towards the superlative moment of the bending near him, twisting and changing squeezable pressure in the cords that forged his path, towards the cornices and trusses of the upper celestial vault, where the shed of doubts was next to the Cherubs. Giving mechanics to the prism that arched the beams in the horizontal lines, taking them towards the amplitude of other lines, which remained solid before the variation, suspecting mutating to one of sudden two-dimensionality. The sections of the timber framework, which looked fatigued before the primary classification, which showed the attitude of the little Messiah, taking out effulgence from its beams, and rolling on other pillars, postponing the vectors of the tangential, contributing bits in rhomboid specialties, that blurred the cylinders of amplitude and field of vision of all those who remained in their nativity. Making diametrical glances so as not to be distracted and adore him with a broad and rectilinear heart, in transversal visualizing for all, the one-dimensional crossed wood, which in its geometry schematized letters and numbers of kabbalah, which differ in dissimilar resistance of Christic ambivalence, as a forerunner of martyrdom. on the wooden cobblestone of Golgotha. This presaged capacities to read them in the Torah and Zohar, gathering everything in a whole, in those vivid tormenting lapses that he felt in advance, as reversible entropy, turning their substance to prepare them for the day of an abolished martyrdom. Making diametrical glances so as not to be distracted and adore him with a broad and rectilinear heart, in transversal visualizing for all, the one-dimensional crossed wood, which in its geometry schematized letters and numbers of kabbalah, which differ in dissimilar resistance to Christic ambivalence, like the anticipation of martyrdom on the wooden cobblestone of Golgotha. This presaged capacities to read them in the Torah and Zohar, gathering everything in a whole, in those vivid tormenting lapses that he felt in advance, as reversible entropy, turning their substance to prepare them for the day of an abolished martyrdom. which differ in dissimilar resistance to Christic ambivalence, like the anticipation of martyrdom on the wooden cobblestone of Golgotha? This presaged capacities to read them in the Torah and Zohar, gathering everything in a whole, in those vivid tormenting lapses that he felt in advance, as reversible entropy, turning their substance to prepare them for the day of an abolished martyrdom, pigeonholed him towards a pre-existing Hellenistic aspect in characteristics of patronage as a representative figure of a male, and a lady of Ptolemaic Egypt in great iconic religiosity, coexisting as a priestess of a female order in the Greek protocols with him. Becoming inseparable in the preeminence of mother and son, as unilateral gender, and of substantial element for the social and political order that reigned in the ancient era. Laying here the unilateral gender indispensable for the social and political order, which is substantiated at the dawn of the empires of all the time, and the patriarchal society? Symbolically Joshua in this cogitabundant providence, adds the feminine value in the society in the Kafersesuh's outlet of the Judah manger, dispensing mainly to women, A great Zohar light, gathered all towards a whole in those errors that Joshua felt in advance, as reversible entropy, giving back his wise existence to prepare them for the day of his sacrifice. Pre Existing in catharsis and substance of divinity connected with the phylogenetic species, classifying up to an Aramaic pontificate of pheromones settled in the lithospheric site of Gethsemane, in a biological sense and in close coincidence in lapse wading, or the phenomenological simultaneity of Eukaryota and Glaucophyta until late Animalia, giving relation parental in characters of the vibrational timbre of the Beams, and its atavistic pedestal, readapting in evolutionary ellipticals of winged tetra species. Allowing to change the ancestral linguistic accouterments in processes of redesigning the divine genetic historical tree and increasing anomalies in the human earthly culture, and not human anthropomorphic in a reviving profanity of fruitive frequency amplitudes, for those who resort to it, monopolizing and synchronous in diachronicity of their specimens. The lights of Joshua's gazes are the Light of Christian Life and Time, in the entity of Joshua born and bloodless from the nature of Child-Man, but of mortal design in the same compulsion to see the luminescence of life in the manger Kafersesuh and only incorporeal unity. Being in exemption from Ego with its structure of living child and dead man, he rushes rebellious and ostentatious in the architecture of the One-dimensional Beams, yielding the glimpse of the aforementioned progenitor "Eye versus Eye", seeing himself like this..., son hovering in the arteries of a Universal-Duoversal life, from a single dimension of cyclical one-dimensional length, encompassing conjecture and biological, the symbolic-allegorical conception of extreme co-divinity, as an exclusive precept of the delicate infinity of the Being of a Messiah, with paraphrases or glosses of Aramaic exegetical affinity, tracing from a linguistic period. Here are the contortions of the Olive Tree Berna, transfigured into everlasting orality and refractory syllable, to incubate eternal rabbinic gifts of perpetual reluctance, beyond the reach of the ego-annihilating will and of apathetic, inert ultra-affections and of miraculous phenomena.

f) Hexagonal Birthright

Civilization has an arched inflection in its regency at the head of the favorable family caste in the blessing, whose hiding place will have to be entrusted to a clan, having to make inquiries that formerly only related to consanguineal minorities from the same family trunk, thus protecting the pantries and accessories in warfare to consolidate the economy, and invigorate its commercial coffers. The land would be and would be an essential partition insignia for the legitimate transmission of epochs and inter-seasons, which received them from its descendants for representation of geomorphological heraldry, given in its regional condition. In the noise of the seventh seal, heaven was silent for half an hour and the seven angels stood before God, and they gave seven trumpets, the other is to appear in front of the altar with a golden censer, to compile it in other prayers in all the saints, on the golden altar that was in front of and in front of the throne - And from the hand of the angel the smoke from the incense with the prayers of the saints - And the angel took the censer, and filled it with the fire of the altar, and threw it to the earth; and there was thunder, and voices, and lightning, and an earthquake - And the seven angels who had the seven trumpets got ready to blow them - The first angel sounded the trumpet, and there was hail and fire mixed with blood, which were thrown upon the earth ; and a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up - The second angel sounded the trumpet, and like a great mountain burning with fire it was hurled into the sea; and a third of the sea was turned to blood - And a third of the living creatures that were in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed - The third angel sounded the trumpet, and a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers, and on the springs of the waters - And the name of the star is Wormwood. And the third part of the waters became wormwood, and many men died because of those waters because they became bitter - The fourth angel sounded the trumpet, and the third part of the sun, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars were smitten, so that a third of them would be dark, and there would be no light in the third part of the day, and also at night - And I looked, and I heard an angel fly through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice: !!

"Being in six instants at the Golden Gate of Jerusalem with Saint John the Apostle, they reordered the majority for a protected subordination in the minor family descended from the eldest son, for the purpose of sustaining them to reach the possession of their theological morphology, in this door, being the only one that will remain closed…, until the second coming of the Messiah. The scheme of the camelids in their osteometry tells us that their heads before Advent! Distorted their calypso lights on the surface of their skeletons, locking the jaws of other camelids, thus bypassing the Apostle's strap, which through the foramen of the supraorbital, thickened the strides that pretended immobile before the opening of the Golden Door. Of course, they were prisoners of their self-denial for the length of their footsteps to the rhythm of the sensitive skulls, In the fourth camel Raeder, he cleared the margins that allowed them to increase their attempts to withdraw them from the golden doors, but the dislocation of the orbits of their ocher eyes, denoted their holes in the condylar fossa, distancing the vicinity of the Tehillim advocated by King David in the Seventh Seal of a stuck Giga Camel. The metric form innovates them of ubiquity, for omnipresence in the camels before the gates, and after the gates, thus leaving the site of the eighth gate, deserting the camels behind the gates and arcades pointing to the old cemetery. of the prophecies that Elijah holds, and in procuring generational stoning of inter camelids, which would be channeled into twelve plus another dozen, but behind all, appearing to be six, later joining King David, who would provide the parallelism of the Seventh Seal. This caravan was numbered from one to six, saving the vertices of the Golden Gate that joined modestly at the odd vertices, under the odd cross of the same vertex, which made the equilateral coherent according to the three angles where Vernarth and Etréstles went, and then joined other pairs of vertices in a crucified chain in the flat and secondary complementarily of the seventh angel, but with epilogue character of the Seventh Seal. Thus it would be numbered according to the Gigas Camels, the Golden Gate, governing them for a family of six family angles and a seventh seal, for the performance of the family sustenance of primogeniture in the reinsertion of Saint John the Apostle, since he was banished by Emperor Domitian. Making themselves succulent of the gold of the Seventh Seal, on the collective unconscious of the first-born, for the good of the sub-genitor son. Here the indication goes for the purpose of populating the consecration of granting greater goods to those who second and could lead forces of abandonment and secular sedentary, for the need to welcome sacrifices of goodness and preferences of lay annoyance and earthly secular strengthening. The kinetics would move the six numbered over the vertices of the Sun in three bevels, joining the pairs in vertices covered in the circumscribed mesh of vehemence, which is impacted with the solid Golden Gate of Jerusalem, depositing the concentric radii of the polarized magnet on the struts of the camel of the central ram, for the affinity of the contraption of a trajectory for all Judah, in six predestined latitudes to Ein Karem, in the Hexagonal Baptistery of the Shepherds".

With symmetrical scrupulousness at a certain time, the rounded bisector of the psychic lines of the peritoneum fold of the solitary flanks of the Camels Gigas, towards a vocal peritoneum set six times more than a seventh, was estimated, in the apothem of the two-dimensional figure of the Febo hexagon angel, with less centrality, for the foundation of the Apostle and Vernarth, regulating them by points and sides, on the perpendicular bezels, prostrating towards a more orthodox and straight line, mutinying with radials phases on the bisector..., giving a quotient of odd numbers, which cut the first round of anointing, among all those that were retained in the daydreams of catching them for involuntary deaths. From Gaugamela's stratagem, three thousand muscular Hetairoi descended, towards the implantation of heart nuclei in the camelids, on the Susa Gate and the oblique break marching towards the war site, creating a fissure between camels, and the sphinx of Alexander the Great breaking into the Left-wing of the Golden Gate. This was the casuistry of Vernarth's psychic advance impetus, who once was at the precise moment of stalking, hypnotizing the gap of the Achaemenides, but unaware of that mechanical moment, persists in going after the Giant Camels. He guided them with his right hand to both sides, equipped with heart irons that exorbitated the whispering of his pectoral canals, interrupting the dawn of the Cinnabar, with the antigen readjusting the hinges of the door before falling untimely. Vernarth, with his sinister, calls upon the Hindu family who tried to open the breach of Alexander with his Macedonian baggage, thus preventing him from lying in the reliquary in contrition towards Vernarth himself. The infamous moment must have passed through the swords of some who resisted when fleeing from the held Golden Gate, giving up the rear of Vernarth with the camels recovered and saved from the abandonment of their afflicted hearts, resigning themselves with empty hands and with an outpouring of victory, but with two units confronted in his Portal of Imagination.

g) Reflection temporality

In cavern series, the lava was converted into cations of hydronium, in underground pits that glowed in Tsambika's temporality when the homily was officiated. Some pieces and calcareous boulders rotated random by the humid and dark narrowness of the subterranean reflection, having lived in the heavenly paradise that formed them by the volcanic tube and its syngenetic, by the erosion of the subsoil of Rhodes. The speculative rock icons expired of the symptoms, with albuminous cliffs of the genetics of the Theoskepasti chapel, Etréstles carried under his arm the expiration contract of the Universe, to deliver it with his signature, for the dimensional transfer will. Everything flourished with attractive mineralization systematizations, under an astral posology, In the cognitive, Kanti memorized his wanderings in Crete, imagining his physical body united with his mind on the paths of the shoulder of his ancestry, with batches of clockwork that went and passed through his physiognomic, bathing with the piece wind, but also with the hard shoulder that came straight towards him, showing him new encephalic pathways, which surrendered in epistemological globes, but levitating in excess of the hard shoulder and the unknowns, for states of temporality that became mentalized in pursuit of a supra desire..., disease or typologies long-standing who used the supposed ontological formalization, gave functioning the property of body with the memory of advanced towards a new Duoversality. The officialization of Ars Choralis, is solemnized for processes of emotional property; In this way the cave of Being and its Temporality is made haughty, self-isolating for intra-cave investigations, as corollaries and agility in those who yearned for identity, being able to attach themselves to deities in dozens of epicenes, which would be from tens to ten, thus being seventy tens and a half, which would be seventy-five of the seven tens, and of the unconscious of the syntagm that Etréstles carried away, separating the syntactic of the Vas Auric hypothesis, so that they coexist..., although the pestilential decays before the rolled-up syntactic of Kanti's head. Untreated and conscious-unconscious to his instinct, resorting and harassing the procedural bars, of the Ergo Sum parameter. The temporality of reflection, In momentum ac Diadem, it shone from the third trumpets of the Seventh Seal to the potential of the twilight corrodes and their regions that made the shoulder of the shoulder the awareness of temporality reflected in required dismayed collectivities, to transcribe exhortations to the behavioral pattern of the temporality of love Faust. Little remains immobile, little drive when two masses of consciousness withdraw to the storehouses of the Universe, already advantageous of their exhaustion, but inheriting them in precipitous emotions towards the pre-consciousness factors in the heights of the mountains of Crete and Kímolos.

Kanti the steed says: “Deus Nostri Pontificatus Annis et ad eum, God is my pontificate and my way to Him…, Adonis in the relative absence of credit, before Ephebos with absolute deafness, surprising me here in the Diospyros and neuro archetype flight. I ride farther than my physical-emotional, contributing in the micro-fusions of the tubules, in quantum, and interacting with the fineness of the minuscule substance, within themselves. Almost injuring the storms that vibrate in the mine of a risk prop of a steed, in pursuit of a trance that only ends up being the architect and augur of knowledge..., of when and where it agonizes more than once, but within the limit of the Duoverse crushed at his own peril, continually evaluating himself to transfer a genetic force into my hooves of solid steel, but ornamental and of Reflected Temporality.


h) Expansion and Aramaic Taxonomy

Organic taxonomy, as a pre-ordering order, classifies the harmlessness of language before the invasion of Alexander the Great. Although there were implosions of the Greek language, its transboundary taxonomy would be shifted towards Judea. Pre cited is its variant pharyngolaryngeal tracheo, in this assertiveness and occasionality, it predisposes emphasis on orthographic rather than phonetic incidents, citing Galilea as a precursor of the Aramaic and taxonomic thesis of Gethsemane, prior to its expansive conventionalism of enrapturing her in her differentiation, and in the expansive hotbeds necessary to channel the basic axons of commerce, between antiquity under the prerogative of supplied ethics and pre-classified inputs, such as food and geographic furnishings of economic arts, as well as, the syntax of words that could have curvature and geometry in the forms or linear designs of the time. Any letter could be interpreted as a physiognomic form or as tools of manifest imperialism, coexisting execrable or blessed as languages or keys of immunological communication, with symbolisms of languages spoken in rituals of systematization, and of obfuscation of a metaphysical Messiah, always an angel, for when this is the case. In other words, the water speaks to him in dialects and adults with an oriental language, appearing cryptic in the appointments that are related to the language of the great Extra Universal heritage.
Vernarth's Aramaic is an ***** composed of valuation graduation and generational expansion, opening evolutions combined with the matrix of “Ethereal Spatiality”, towards a channel or rib with a common end in what is done on the margin of Faith. and it is predestined on the basis of object and substance, as a regulatory organism, for groupings of species within the biological language or not, as well as in the fissure of a Cladia of lichen fungi, forming the optics of expression as spelling and not as a utilitarian concept. Amplifying what a camel is; this is how it is importunate, being its **** consensus with the "S" backward in a perfect camelid, the "T" also being a perfect Cobra approaching the three S's of the Syriac Aramaic alphabet. The “Y with L fused” of the Aramaic alphabet with a large elephant, and finally the “H” as a pelican simile, like the pelagornithids or Pelagornithidae, fossilized in the emotional collective of rock tribes, progressing from elephants, camels or pelicans in the search for a literate language and consonant shapes that are attributed to their jaws and pharyngolaryngeal substrates..., observing long vowels, as in the language of an organic universal alphabet. The matrix is timeless, branching out of the mechanics of natural and phenomenal selections, if it is metaphysical or is contributing Demiourgy on the infinity of the encodings or depending on the size of its geo-referencing, it will contribute energy exchanges with predictive purposes of information of orders, and adaptations of the calcified scientific space, Vernarth, dives into the ponds or Naídes of the Aegean and survives, just when the networked volcanoes were swallowing all the seas in the world. It braced being only part of the laps of the sea, tattooing with its gaze the chthonic nymphs, before envious and backsword ogres with gills, which multiplied more than any myth-poetic. Its power of convergence is inhibited by the poetic myths of primordiality and of cosmology as a natural branch in nautical miles traveled by its arms, without knowing who crossed them, survivor, in its advance, and treasuring the arm plunges on and under the scalded clay objects, perhaps as implantation of the muddy and hyper-flood lexicon, empowering itself in its translation from Syria to Patmos, and from linear B Mycenaean to Syriac Aramaic languages,


i)Sub - Verthian Mythology (Camera Obscura)

Adhered to the ancient parallels of the cult, the mythology of Horcondising lashes out. Stale and axiomatic source of pragmatic and rational earth that emanates from this constrained fusion of the Universe in the metamorphosis of Duoverso-Horcondising. Social and genealogical plates date more than seven hundred years from Lombardy and northern Venice in Italy, Spain, and France. The mission of the Horcondising is the transhumant myth, and Chaos of the ancestral family cenacle, in view of a family rule, succeeding in continuous litanies that consecrate rites beyond genetic archaeological death. The consolation of souls will revive and will be under the edict of the Sub-mythology in repose landing in successive parapsychological regressions, which will speak of deaths suffered at the edge of their test tube lives, Under the mythology, there is the sub-fable, prone to boundaries where the statement innovates the entire structure of hermeneutics, as a written notification and complacent verb, for lords of the grass and granaries of granaries, narrating myth-stories in messes of revived verbality. Thus in Rhodes and Patmos, Andronicus of  Rhodes will guard the doorway of his hobbies again, so that these disciplines are conducive to sponsorships of words under reasons of a nature concerning Saint John the Apostle risen in flesh and spirit, in contrast to the conclusions of the reason to leave breathless the destiny that the just cheer and disapproval of diction of not certain science, under ships that cover the commendable salvation in exegetical storms that go from a liberated shelter, as well as in what differs from the et Grammatica institutione arithmetica in that each one writes what it understands, and adds what humanistically makes existence in a biblical alphanumeric dimension, from the imaginary in some of its leaders such as Zefián, Borker, Leiak, Kaitelka, in Hyperdisis and the Zig Zag Universes. Making the mythical an ensemble with deities that rule the infinite, achieving more secular religiosities than in a radius of religion, founded by characters that are already pagan mythology. This is the raison d'être of the sub-mythology, which springs from one already narrated and rationalized, but in the contradiction of what underlies under the very observance that unites itself, forging itself creditor of very new myths within others, with characters that have never been or have been parasitizing on another source of cognition. Thus becoming extensive and prolonged in its passage liers sumptuousness of other arcane myths, within the same ones that inhabit the mythological lie, without blemish from veracity belonging to the living-lie in pursuit of a dead-truth. Even if it is in this way or hermeneutic method, continue to beat and go to meet the Castellar Imaginary del Horcondising and the Camera Obscura, which always live and revive in the sub-imagination, but from a mythical truth in a regime of multitudinous voice. and myth-poetics.

From the sooty Camera Obscura the spindle was obtained over the diameters of each edge, Vernarth of the same chaos, converged from the square but not the spherical world, from this sooty box together with his master Zefián, who polished and shot vines of light over the projection of the same box, and of the quantum ark on the acropolis of Leiak, simulating entelechy in its projection with the ultraviolet light of light similar to the earth, but not square, rather appearing to be a square sphere. After repeated intervals, Vernarth opened the slits of his hands, also hollowed, here other globules appeared but not spheroids, rather quadrilaterals at the end of the third phase in the last three series that showed the complete reflection of a tiny world, that just clamored for amnesty as a matter that had been beginning to form with another factor on a large scale, from this fractality that would appear as Vernarthian sub-mythology. Camera Obscura, in a combination with twelve atomic masses, stands out starting in the irradiation of sexagesimal nomenclature; imagining fractionality between sixty microseconds to sixty in the hexagonal polygon of the Primogeniture and the Baptistery of Ein Karem. Being used in the elevations of the stars and the Heliac Ortho of dawn, which would find the black box that was nailed in its twelve apostolate angles. The whole times were divided into more exact numbers that surrounded him in his Camera Obscura doing trigonometry with other rectangles of three equilateral, making multiples of twelve on the line of the hypotenuse of sixty, dividing by the hexagonal, which is the angular line of the six sides of progression of the Duoverse becoming a spheroid square, for an analogy of Hexagonal Birthright with the multiple of twelve for the sake of the Giant Camels, leading them to the obfuscation of the Horcondising fused with the Duoverse, by means of Pi (π), in the diameter equidistant between the Universe and the Duoverse disintegrated in two by the concentric radius of both geometric units. In the same way, Vernarth multiplied the existence of his new sexagesimal world in nths by sixty followed by infinite numbers of zeros, canceling the radical time of the masses of anodyne particles. The corondels or watermarks, overflowed with all the irregularities of the system, showing the decimal after the comma.


j)Verthian Apostolic Conception - Kashmar

Vernarth, was in Sardinia in the megalithic complexes Nuraga when he conceived his apostolate as a messenger, biologically entrenched in the taxonomic stasis, with a merely profane and urban framework. Whose classification he would transmit to his relatives after long periods in Macedonia, sailing and doing his falconry and philosophical avant-garde chores with Aristotle, in a laxity that invited him after long rejoices to record and sculpting messages with the doves of his village. Near Pella, in the central region of Macedonia, where his general Alexander the Great resided, south of the Axio River, his abode was nomadic and was on a hill near the lakes and mountains surrounded by Greco-Barbarian inhabitants, tracing the Chalkidian league., after the Peloponnesian War. He was in great campaigns in the former Pella, His will as an artist is precisely to be an apostolate of a thought that would intersect with the Yahwist gift to an apostolate of the Apostle Matías, whose connection would provide his transliteration of the post-mortuary link of the Jesus of Nazareth, replacing Judas Iscariot, due to his apostasy. Vernarth, distressed by this episode, became Commander of Alexander the Great, lying already primitive in his ranks of Hetairoi, transcending over the scourge of Judas Iscariot, to face in the arena of Pella. In a reverie near the Thermaic Gulf, he genuflected under the sacrosanct trees near some illustrious Kashmar Cypresses, channeling his furious and tramontane spiritual into the gulf, to take him out of a banal summer in the transition of an immolated soul, and make him walk for thirty days barefoot, without sweet potatoes in his hands to ego stone him, only naming him slavish stubble of the crops in the deleterious nesting places of the Ravens of Kashmar, bidding him so that his blood is ****** by the heels of the rooted trees of Thor forest, usurping his "Gift of Iahvé ”In dishonor of its Hebraic appellation, for the onomatopoeic of its rhetoric, resulting from the feckless roar of black lineage, which will emanate from the mouth of the Aulos, whistling inside the Cobra. In the aforementioned link, the group of twelve was recomposed, being in the gulf and in the incidences of the re-indoctrination of the twelve apostolates, he is with his prayer and atonement in the mystical character for the community worshiping the Kashmar; which roots hardened towards the silent immolation portent as Judas entered the black night, for excessive twists of the bifurcations, intertwining with the Beams of the Thermaic cliff, like a lynx observing the height and its prominence in that of Judas dwindling over the stained areas of hell..., thus its remains were scattered by the synod of bustard birds in the sprayed sky of globular creation, faded by conclusive hordes of the late Neolithic Druid and by the deity Belinus, with ingots of sooty petrified poplar from Hecate boiling in the Underworld. We shoveled over the holm oak groves and their trees, sacralizing their factotum after the ritual of the sanctuary of the thus his remains were scattered by the synod of bustard birds in the sprinkled sky of globular creation, faded by conclusive hordes of the late Neolithic Druid and by the deity Belinus, with ingots of Hecate's sooty petrified poplar boiling in the Underworld. We shoveled over the holm oak groves and their trees, sacralizing their handyman after the ritual of the sanctuary of the thus his remains were scattered by the synod of bustard birds in the sprinkled sky of globular creation, faded by conclusive hordes of the late Neolithic Druid and by the deity Belinus, with ingots of Hecate's sooty petrified poplar boiling in the Underworld. We shoveled over the Holm oak groves and their trees, sacralizing their handyman after the ritual of the sanctuary of the Dodona, in uniformity towards a murmur in the leaves from oak in the spell of man towards an oracle, to consummate it with the mendicant count of the Ziziphus Spina-Christi; hawthorn of the crown of Jesus but with implants of Kashmar, on the crown of Judas already immolated.

Vernarth walked alone through the inlet of Skala, on Patmos, when he had to undertake a trip to Judah, even so, he also walked bi-location in the inlet of Sardinia, after being in the megalithic complex Nugarhe, Vernarth, Etréstles, and Walekiria, they approach matching Tuscany. Once they were instantiated in Sardinia, a coastal sailboat transported them in the middle of a stormy day, it was a great happy day to arrive in La Spezia. Here they parked at night following the Liturgy, standing out those that coincided with Lent of Holy Week, where one day they were seen talking with Petrarca and Laura de Noves. The olive trees keep pietism with the phantasmagoria of the Kashmar, who made the double murmur of the spell of the Duoversal man. Always in Tuscany, the tracks below the garden have been occupied, which has a distant view of the roofs and towers of Florence. The monumental fountain set on a steep hill on a side flank of the garden terrace has a seated god flanked by lions in relief of stucco from a niche decorated with pebble mosaics and padded masonry. " Here at the Verbena of a long feast day, all together with Vernarth get drunk with Corinth Wine, which they brought and did not stop swinging to the rhythm of the music that made them foresee multi-existence beyond limitless sensibilities, turning their role closer to from the instigated destiny to Patmos in the hands of the original Duoverso with translation, rotation and Duoversal Theurgic orbit, for the spell-dogmatic invoking ultra-sensory powers of angels and gods, in order to signify with his country land near Pella,

k)Fractality and Spirit-Cinnabar Dynamics

In the black camera obscura, certainly connected blues made other dark holographic areas that were enlarged super connected to the optical perspective, conceiving of the infinity of a luminescence that was fractalized, the black-blue pre-existing towards the Z pattern = Exp (Z / OB ^ 4), what is the equivalent to the set of the Bernese Olive Tree Rapa, on the border of its Lipogenesis, which would appear in the chromatic version and final maturity of the olive tree, for the fractal exponential of Z =; where all the points of the complex plane Z = (OB, iy) are iterated in the corresponding function Olives Berna in a set of IY, and in all the iterations where an arbitrary constant (Cx, iCy) is added Cinnabar in lines of orthogonal sets X and Y, in such a way that the choice of the constant "seed" will determine the unique shape of the profile and the color of the fractal, once the chromatic pattern has been defined. In the paradigms shown in this continuation, a constant has been chosen, as it will only produce divergence and will have been qualified with the escape velocity algorithm, to contract exact self-similarity stratagems in this, which is the most restrictive type of car. -similarity; requiring the fractal to appear identical at different scales.

The holistic spórtula of the Cinnabar in some pecuniary exercises, are impelled for a tacit and absent society, in Every night beginning at dawn, everyone retreats and the Cinnabar appears like a kaleidoscope apostolizing in glorious joy, where the Aramaic synergy between the Garden of Olives and Gethsemane, is concatenated with the entirety of the Phylogenetic species with the homily in Tsambika and Theoskepasti, such as the new relationship of the link between species that were improper and endemic to the region near the stable in Bethlehem de Kafersesuh, to be inter-inseminated in the banks of the slopes of Gethsemane, in such a way, that the linguistics would begin to be absorbed in Joshua, and it would go for a closer shortcut towards the classification of the traditional and omnipotent variants, which migrated through the Olives to renew and preserve the Aramaic or Aramaic languages, from a shared origin now, for the omnipotent salvific languages that were to be addressed in Gethsemane. Once starting the splendor in the city of the eight gates, and from such interference, involve the Lepidoptera taxon, inseminating the populations of organisms related to lexicons to shed life and language,

l)Vas Auric – Cinnabar (Φ)

The pecuniary prerogative of spórtula, makes the Vas Auric and the Mandylion its residence, tending towards an algebraic sense of the two diametral in a cross by the perpendicular, towards the tension of the shortest segment by the long, tracing a circumference of radius and a half. Homologating in the interposed eclipse of the golden or golden number, for the divine proportion in consequence of irrational fractioning numbers. Shortening the passage of the algebraic numbers with the infinite decimal towards the Cinnabar with seven arches in parentheses reflecting in the partition of the apse in both temples of the homily, making the period of antiquity, files registered in mega center of the quantum memory of Cinnabar, before disrupting the genesis of the Duoverso.

The First Treatise of the Vas Auric fell into the hands of Vernarth, one day of heavy plutonium sheets en masse of the golden number. The vertical avalanche was segmented when the dichotomy of another line that collided with the segments was not altered, or rather omitted by certain temporary blindness of the Duoverso world that it just boasted. Compositions of number Z are made, and subdivision in its cinematographic optics, divided into two slow shots of a small element that became part of the controversy of Vas Auric as a medallion and Auric as Mystic Gold, with distribution laws.

"Zeus wakes up shaky, full of headache saturated in Pro-headache Herbs
Jophiel is speaking this time in the Kabbalistic Torah language...
with its golden commoner and super zone of Organikon Sorousliston Papadikon….
secular music that supplies Zeus with protein albumin,
to make him more human... Zeus accepts Jophiel placing him in his discernment
over the house of Jophiel; divine island to throw cartomancy...
bring the second ray to the Sahasrara on his crown,
pacified love that is the suspicious and risky loser of everything...
risk in the head, especially when condemnation is born!

And the floristics, over the stolon of the veins, moves synchronously with the prolongations, speeds, and acceleration of the emancipated leaves of the first order of the upper crown, up to the lower ones, thickening the golden spirals of a certain type of inflorescence, confining the umbilical zones of Vernarth, and the plantar area of its feet between three and more than a hundred steps that come from certain metamorphoses, creating peduncular areas, acting as a support for Vernarth and its Elder areas, brought from the Bumodos stream, after a string therapy, creating psychic supports to endorse globalized neuralgic. Understanding that the line of his neuralgia oscillates the greater analog of the Messiah in the cross pierced by the Hastae Praetorian, in the most remote of the elliptical of pain, reduplicated by accumulated energy, almost like mystical suffocation. On the part of the growth of the tangent in growth and of the evolution of the reflection, where the attenuation of the opposite effect is unleashed, allowing convalescence zones in signs of propeller blades around the Vas Auric, crossing vertical and horizontal beams of lights, in search of Light Angled and refractory solar, for the palfrey of the Kanti Steed, abstracted from excessive rain, which uncrossed the tempos of the aura of the organic and aerial underground, towards the duplicity of curves of the multi-cloned numbers and angered by their industrious dynamics of skewed movement, towards the effective solar..., tending to the effects of successive trends of the vaporous numeral of Vas Áurico Cinnabar.

m) Psychic Trisomy

The species and somatic acquired deposits of DNA spirals, given their characteristics, will make transformations in more than one cellular taxon for a homologous pair. Here Kaitelka the whale down from Sub-Mythology, will circle in the Baltic Sea, compromising neuralgia in it as a superfluous essence due to its trisomy, making a comparison with psychic trisomies that Vernarth suffered at least four times a month, from the first and eleventh day, after his parapsychological regressions when he sailed over abysses and anesthetized zones on glacial plankton in the North Sea. Kaitelka individualized her cellular regressions, becoming a prehistoric cetacean and when she lagged beyond or before her creation, she transferred psychic trisomies due to her twenty-one chromosome. Kaitelka's karyotype was directed towards the crease of her eyes, due to an infection in the area of her basal inter fins, which disturbed her heart rate in a short interval where Poseidon magnified her coefficient in high amplitude, after being inseminated in a tempered state and gifted as a Super Goddess. Kaitelka in nativity in the transversal valleys sailed in the air atmospheres of Hyperdisis, and she was always seen in the company of Leiak; the omnipresent and vague spirit of the watery ductile dancer, living on the liquefied element with his astringent slimy chin..., seeing him with his grotesque back-breaking swampy lines between knuckles, and hedges of tricks collected before the first station, in one of the first of the three Remaining nights before reaching Joshua de Piedra del Horcondising volcano, that upset her heart rate in a brief interval where Poseidon magnified her coefficient in high amplitude, after being inseminated in a moderate state and gifted as a Super Goddess. About seven hundred meters high she becomes Kaitelka Down godmother, adding the psychic chromosome twenty-two that contracts in the connection with Vernarth, in the extravagant massifs when in the autumn afternoons they collect Ceratocystis fagacearum Fungi, and irradiating them with insects such as the borers. When   Kaitelka recovers its chromosome by detraction in the natural selection of Trisomy, express is spilling on the dry and gelatinous Laurus leaves of all its dead cells, which are promptly seeped from the retracted membranes in frank adhesion, causing regeneration of the disease. After wanderings and ringed symptoms of lesson in the atmosphere of the ecstatic Horcondising, the wooly will be magnanimous and challenged from the chromosome spilled in the emulsion, is contained in the alpha proteins in the transverted Vernarth genome, as a warned whole and abundantly diploid, before reaching the lethal processes of reciprocal adversity, both as a zoo-anthropoid or a triple zoo-anthropoid-botanical effect. Pre-Existing Kaitelka Down with forty-two chromosomes (22 pairs) and the Lepidoptera Agrodiaetus (134 pairs), in its haploid, that is, half remains vitalizing between two species of the sub-mythological world, and in its psychic cellular compound, and later implant it in germ cells for the effect of Venarthian ambivalent psychic transmission and vice versa. By discard, there are four fewer chromosomes than the hommo sapiens and 222 less than the Lepidoptera Agrodiaetus, for a meta sense of flourishing with the power of Poseidon, brother of Zeus, Meta sense and discernment, encephalic they will be cogitated by conscious where their sensory cognitive is interrupted, towards an unconscious through the photons of hypocaloric temperature, to define in the prehistoric psychological memory of their psychic, more than random brain, coexisting of habeas corpus content and remote brain energy, before the magistracy and power of Poseidon that confines him. Graduated from southern impassable seclusion, their memory is isolated in their E-Cloud. Namely; stored in electromagnetic and electrophysiological stimuli, incontinent and weighted in the square miles of floating Poseidon outbursts, in the category of super cetacean down, with only four meager chromosomes from the remnants of the human procedural genome. The trisomy field, On the fourth of August of the year of the Lord, 1617, when Klauss Rittke was cleaning the main stained glass window of the Cathedral of Avignon, he heard heated dialogues between a Friar and a Gentleman, who was once an assistant to the clergy. Klauss could come closer and listen to their conversation more clearly, until the Friar Andrés Panguiette, babbling, demanded of Raymond Bragasse indulgence or one or the other. (Compendium of Marielle Quentinnais). Relating in its narrative evolution, about some Albigenses of this work set in Avignon, time of the Antipopes, crossing with the psychic waves that have just been mentioned, and of prophecies of who precisely Guillaume Bélibaste was born into a Cathar family. Having noted that 1321 in 296 years apart from Marielle Quentinnais, it takes place in Carcassonne on the same day as Bélibaste was executed, given his licentious life breaking Cathar dogmas, incriminating himself with civilians from the region, marrying women in exile, etc., was condemned by the Holy Inquisition, where many were purged for the sole fact of holding biblical books in their abode. Among the flames of his bonfire the prophecy of the laurel will be homologated, whose shadow will fall on the centuries to come. Note the coincidence 3, 700 years ago, where the first signs of life were appreciated on our planet and in the Hylates Forest in Cyprus (700, 000 thousand souls) in the imprint that unifies the Christian scrolls, blowing gold dust on Walekiria's hair..., and being liberated, as a tantric body of physicality. No one spoke, not even the 700, 000 thousand souls who also claimed to be liberated (Vernarth, page 313 - paragraph 2). And finally the seventh portion of the sea, with Poseidon. Here the Psychic numeral of Vernarth and Kaitelka coincide, who appears with the laurel of Guillaume de Bélibaste after almost seven hundred years, facing the unification of the prophecy of the Laurel, whose shadow will hover over the centuries to come. Templars, perfect bone Hommes and Cathars meet, in this historical feat, through the secret path safe from traitors and conspirators thanks to the most surprising allies. Bélibaste's fast-paced story will allow us to get closer to the most unknown ceremonies and rituals of his confession, showing us his revelations in the flames and turning green in the Laurel of 1321 in sync with 2021. Given the little and nothing that exists of the revealing enthronement and the psychic environment, it should be noted that historical facts fly like pollen, with the waves in their same vibrations of the aeolian autogyro. This entails physical vibrational material, which is in every corner of existentialism, without beginning or end, only rewinding through the infinite axon of karma and samskara, for physical-ecological convulsed means and intermediates, in revealing semblances of the primitive psychic field before us, like the Aspís Koilé, as a shield or as an omnidirectional parabolic antenna, bringing us events after events that strangely interchange phases, and intertwined efforts over time in quantum physics and subsequent biophysical changes in the genome chain, especially in its Psychic Trisomy.

to be continued...
DUOVERSE
Paula Swanson Oct 2010
I now know why the Willow weeps
A tragedy of love it's memory keeps
For once a young man and a young maid
On tender grass beneath branches lay
Though pledged by birth to another
From clans they hid to be together
Thus the gentle Willow was their choice
Meeting beneath, till love they could voice
The Willow held these secret lovers dear
So would lower it's boughs when they drew near
Then tucked away in the Willow's womb
Could lay as one, yet this love was doomed
For jealousy lurked within the Pines
Spying the lovers thus entwined
Behind their curtain of slender limbs
He swore the maiden would yet be his
And so it came to pass one day
As the maiden softly maid her way
To their Willow deep within the glen
She saw the branches did already bend
Timidly as she did draw near
A sound of sorrow met her ears
Parting Willow branches to look within
A dampness did touch upon her skin
The Willow was shedding sap laden tears
For the young man in death was near
It was an arrow that had been used
A potent poison it's head infused
The maiden now blind with grieving mist
Removed the arrow, held it clenched in her fist
Whilst cradling his head he drew his last breath
She did plunge the arrow into her breast
And so it is that this is told
The Willow's grief could not be consoled
For unable to stop what had befell
The young love it had hid so well
With it's will broken as the lovers lay dead
The Willow, it's branches, never again spread
And because it is the memory it keeps
it is to this day that the Willows weep



Featured Poem on Poetry Soup, April 4, 2010
Miss Havisham Jun 2015
Willows weep softly
by the creek that flows near them
in the summer sun.

-M.H.-
forestfaith Jun 2018
There I was, tired and all, basking under a willow tree. Nothing much, just reading a book, reading aloud once in a while… Birds chirping, river, still flowing, the sun, still shining. The light of the sun peeks through the leaves of the willow trees, playing a game of hide and seek.The willows swaying by and by, just going with its own river of life, still flowing. Just swaying to the rhythm of the wind. The willows, their leaves, they look like raindrops, hanging down from the tree. Just so beautiful, those willows, , so free and peaceful, covering over me as i sleep….
I love this one too
Inqhawq Mar 2015
: To the needy willows at the stream... Take the last wisps of life and excitement from me, they are yours, I am but a paper boat, lost in the current; barely afloat. Shy tendril, grasp the manes of dead lions; imaginations' last scions. Tomorrow the light of winter fades slow; left fed to keep dying hearts aglow. It is not the end for those; just indecipherable prose, left for when a mind makes sense.
Jesse stillwater Apr 2018
The woman in the window
  Looks out beyond the glass
Beyond the reach of her whispers
  Befogged upon windowpanes glance

Farther  than  the  bounds
  Her own breathe imbues
Out of reach her long fingered touch
  Tracing her murmurs on looking glass dew
Grasping for the shadowed artifacts
  Only time does nonchalantly drift past

Perched alone upon a cloud of silence
  Her thoughts eddy in soundless swirl
Spinning like dizzying shadows
  Swallowed by a thirst for light

The other side of window beckons
  Only she knows she’s looking out through a sigh;
Seeing no one familiar looking back ―  
  For what hidden jewels within abide

She dreams of dancing leafless by daylight
  Twirling beneath the whispering willows sway
Just a step away from being free
  Just a step away from feeling alive

With first step beyond imprisoning hesitation
  Crossing over the threshold of a dream
Through a liberating portal outside the glass
  Just on the other side of the windowsill ...


                  Jesse e Stillwater
13th  April  2018
Terry O'Leary Sep 2014
Sweet Butterfly, with wings now dry 'tis time to break away
and light upon the leaves of dawn while weeping willows sway,
not reminisce 'bout chrysalis discarded yesterday,
but treasure life, with colors rife in nature's cabaret.

Sweet Butterfly, you sometimes sigh "terrene so strange and new”,
but take a chance, with winged expanse of fairy-like bijou,
to taste delight in random flight, to drift beyond the blue
and then collect her naked nectar, sipped in morning dew.

Sweet Butterfly, you question why the breeze is seldom soft
when swirling you, your wings askew, while floating free aloft.
Some seem to find their peace of mind believing gods have coughed,
but others, downed, have often found more freedom when they've scoffed.

Sweet Butterfly, you needn't cry, the fields are full of clover,
and meadowlands bare braided strands that winds in waves flow over -
but if you fear that, more than here, another mead is mauver,
just flutter by, beneath the sky, unfettered flitting rover.

Sweet Butterfly, farewell, goodbye, you've left this world behind.
I oft gaze back along the track of flowers that you've mined
recalling days of light sashays and movements unconfined
that complement the firmament where beauty lies enshrined.
Tom McCone Mar 2014
dunedin. friday, three, afternoon.
set from home under a blue sky
with full& prepared pack,
a somewhat empty stomach,
and a necessity to get away from the city.
hiking boots tread asphalt down to the depot,
where, in thirty-seven minutes punctuated
by plastic seats grafted to a wall
and a mildly disjunct group of small or
big-time travellers, the naked bus
pulled in, a hematite centipede
crawling into the lot. it was a bus,
no complaints. all others' bags
stowed, twenty seven bucks outta pocket
and swung into the front-right-window seat,
bid a farewell to the beat-down
pub across the road and onto the one-way
merging into a highway and outta
town the dark bug skittered, on
schedule or something resembling it.
behind the driver, the sun came through
around the beam in the window. warm patterns
laid on skin, the countryside's broad expanse:

cylindrical bales of hay scattered about
paddocks, dark late-autumn florets of flax
on roadsides, plumes of white smoke from
bonfires in townships as small as a thumbnail,
hedgelines of eucalyptus, pine; russet streaks
through bark of single gum trees stood
off-centre in fields. sticky-wooded hillsides
punctured by fire breaks roll almost forever
and back. the rushing sound of passing cars
through the 3/4-golden ratio of the driver's
ajar window; twenty-first century mansions
verging on out-of-place. saplings emerging,
bracketed, through verdant grass patches.
museum abbatoirs. toitoi like hen's plumage
lining drainage ditches. another Elizabeth st-
(how many could be counted out by now?) tidy
front yards and milton liquorland through this
small town. an everpresent tilting sun. fields
of flowered nettle. s-bends through pancake layers
of hills. a delapidated gravel quarry at stony
creek. deer farms, sheep farms, bovine farms, alpaca
farms (favourite); another bonfire seen down a
long gulley; a power substation, all organized
tangles. a two-four 300m before the bridge into


balclutha. 4.40pm.
across the road into the i-site
two friendly ladies circle locations
to make (got a car) or try to make (on foot),
offering a ride in half an hour,
leave it to chance.
across another road, drifter's emporium
(that's the name, no joke) got a knife
to open up cans- bought no cans, brought
no cans, still nice to have one anyway.
down the road, 200ml from unichem, waste
no time, turn ninety degrees, cross a
railway, then outta town in a sec. first
photo: half highway, half clutha river. fine
shot. sit down, watch the water couple mins,
head down the road. red-black ferns radiate
under willows down the riverbank. metal
bumper-bars keep legs on, the road rolls
gentle turns, diverges from the river. stick
to the former, faster that way. no intentions
of hitching. just wanna walk. and walk. and
walk. guy yells out a car window. envy,
likely. who cares. apple tree hangs over
a dry ditch. pick a small one, gone in
a minute. probably ain't sprayed. been
eating ice-cream dinners more often'n
not the last coupla weeks- isn't much
the stomach won't or can't handle anymore,
anyway.

odours of decay from the freezing works.
seagulls sound out nearby.
typical.

down the road, the reek of death fades
out. back to grass. sit in some of the
tall stuff, under a spindly tree. put down
some ink, a handful of asst. nuts. 'bout
thirteen fingers of daylight left. no idea
if the coast is further than that. little
care. down the road the land flattens out,
decent sign. the junction was a fair bit
past reckoned, though. flipped a chunk
of bark (too lazy to get a coin out) to
figure whether the coast was worth it. bark
said no, went out anyway. gotta see the sea,
keeps you sane. past a lush native
acre or two- some lucky ******'s front lawn-
changed mentality, slung out a thumb (first
time). beginner's luck, kid straight outta
seventh form pulls over in a mustard-yellow
*******' kinda beach-van. was headin' out
to the coast, funnily enough. had been up
in raglan (surf central, nz), back down with
the 'rents now, though. out kaka point, only
one of his age, he reckoned, no schoolhouse
there, just olds. was going to surf academy,
pretty apt. little envious.

the plains spread out and out, ocean just
rose up out of a field. there's nothing
more perfect. gentle waves stroke the sands,
houses stare intently out at the mingling of
blues. one cloud hovers so far away it doesn't
even exist. down the other end of kaka point,
back on solid ground, walking into a gorge, laments
about not choosing the coastal route. but owaka
is the new destination, bout 11ks, give or take
(5ks later, sign says another 15.. some give). nothing
coulda beat that sight anyway, stepping outta
a van onto that pristine beach.

entry: gorge route to owaka. seven.
late light painted the tops of hills absolute
gold. thought maybe this way ain't so bad. beside a
converging valley, phone got enough reception
for dad to get through. said in balclutha coulda
got a room with a colleague. too far out now. lost
him in the middle of a sentence about camera film.
surprised to have even got that far. road wound
troughlike through the bottom of the gorge, became
parallel to a cute little stream. climbed down chickenwire
holding the road in place, ****** in it (had to).
clambered back up, continued walking as the occasional
campervan rolled on by. took a photo of the sun perched
on a hilltop, sent it to mel. dunno why. anxieties
over the perfect sunrise picture came frequently,
a goal become turmoil. the gorge flattened out,
and soon in countryside my fears allayed. round
a corner in picturesque nowhere, found my shot.
sat in long grass. stole it. sighed. ate a handful
of nuts. moved on. {about eight}

dark consumed the surrounding gentle-rolling hills,
nowhere near owaka, which was probably the tiny bundle
of lights nestling a little below the foot of a
mountain in the distance (not too far off, in
reality). near the turnoff to surat bay (was heading
there, plans change) a ute honks. taken as friendly.
a right turn instead of a left, farmsteads lit
up in fireplace tones, the sound cows make at
dusk. it got colder. would one jersey be sufficient?
hoepfully. stars began pinpricking the royal blues of the
night sky in its opening hues. eight-fourty-ish slugged
back about 3/4 of the syrup, along with half of a box
of fruit medley (so **** delicious), in light of dull
calf aches becoming increasingly apparent. needed
to walk a helluva lot more. ain't one for lettin'
nothing get in the way of that. lights in the distance
became the entry sign for a camp-site. no interest,
head on. past another farmhouse, stars came out in
packs. three cows upon a slight hilltop. next junction
pulled left a good eighty degrees and was on the
straight to owaka. less than two minutes later,
a dog-ute pulled to a halt and offers up a ride down
most of the stretch. didn't say no.

still stable, as two pig-hunters tell
of their drive back from picking up a couple
pig-dogs somewhere north. they were heading
out bush to shoot, thought they'd seen
another guy they'd picked up a couple weeks
ago, who'd taken 'em out somewhere they
couldn't remember. paranoia grips, but
the lads are fairly innocuous. they say it's
dangerous out here, gotta be ballsy walking
middle of the night, no gun, no dog,
all by yourself. wasn't worried, got nothing
to lose anyway (still, this sets helluva
mood). by a turnoff a k outta owaka, dropped
off. said probably all that'll be open there
is a pub, if that. bid luck and set their way.
above, the whole sky is covered with shining
glitter. down a dip and turn, **** in the
middle of the road. an ominous sign indicating
the outskirts of

owaka. approximately 9.40pm

my head loosens as i approach. the lights
form across a small valley i can't verify
exists or not between dog barks i mistake
for the yells of drunkards and lights
pirouetting from cars behind me. i slow
down i don't want to do this.

owaka is terrifying. plastic.

the street corners thud like cardboard. i
walk past a garden of teapots, a computer
screen inside the house glares through the
window pane bending breathing outward. there
is nobody here, still there is a feeling
like there's people everywhere, flocking
in shadows. a silhouette moving in a
distant cafe doorway. the sound of teeth,
of darkness fallen. thick russian tones
sound from a shelf of a motel. eyes
everywhere, mostly mine. i stop only round
a bend and down near a police station, yet
feeling no more safe, sitting in a gutter to
send mel my plans, to tell myself my plans.
i want to be nowhere again. i am soon nowhere.


out of breath, out the other end of owaka,
the sick streetlights fade into comforting
dark nestled between bunches of indistinct
treelines. the feeling of safety lasts but
twenty minutes, where another dip in the
road leads through a patch of bush, in which
gunshots ring periodically and laughter and
barking rings through. breaking down, it takes
five minutes to resolve and keep going. ain't
got nothing to lose, anyway. boots squeak like
diseased hinges all down the road. hadn't
noticed beforehand, the only thing noticed
now. an impending doom hangs thick like fog,
the thought of being strung up like an
underweight hog. walking faster and
not much quieter, the other side of the
bush couldn't have come sooner. the fear
lasts until the gunshots are distant nothing.
still alive, still out of breath, still
fairly ****** up, there's no comfort like the
sound of nothing but the occasional insect's
chirp. vestiges of still water came around
a corner and just kept coming as the golden
moon sung serenity all over. finally, a peace
came to rest over the landscape. sitting by
the road with a clear view of the moon's light
sheathed in the waters, the stars above wreath
a cirrus eye to watch over the marshland
plants leading into the placid waters of

catlins lake, west. ten fifty-one.
crossing a one-way bridge over a river winding
its way into the lake, another turning point
decision arose: continue down the highway
along the river, or head straight out and
toward the coast again. having resolved to
make it to a waterfall by dawn, and the latter
offering a possibility of this, the decision
made itself. turning back around the other side
of the lake, the road wound a couple times
up a gentle ***** out and up from the valley
at the tail of the lake, and into a slightly
more elevated valley. the country roads ran
easily and smooth, paved roughly but solid.
not a car came by for kilometers at a time.
lay on the road past a turnoff for quarter
of an hour letting serenity wash over, the
hills miniscule in comparison to home, the
sky motionless, massive thin halo about the
moon. walking on, night-birds called from
time to time (no moreporks, though. not until
dawn), figuring out how to whistle them back.
a turnoff to purakaunui bay strongly
considered and ultimately ignored; retrospectively
a great call, considering the size of the detour.
hedgerows of macrocarpa, limbs clearly cut
haphazard where once they'd hung over the
road. occasional 4wd passing, always a 4wd,
be it flash new or trusty old. you'd need
one out here. have no fun, otherwise.
monolithic pine-ish hedge bushes, squatting
giants. once, a glimmering in the sky, a
plane from queenstown (assumedly) almost
way too far to make out. the colossus of
the one human-shaped shadow cast down
from the moon to my boots. how small
a thing in this place. swamped out by
the beauty of this neverending valley.
breathless.

the road turned, not quite a hairpin,
but not entirely bluntly, a welcome
break from the straight or gentle
sway, and five minutes turned to dirt.
had to lay down again- legs screaming
by this point for rest. still, they
had nothing against pressing on. dad
taught me to just keep going. that's
the thing about walking. stop for a
little bit and you're good to go
again. pushing for the fall was probably
overkill, but no worry now. dirt road
felt so right after a good 20+ks of
asphalt, only infrequently punctuated
by roadside moss or thin grass. it
was as if beginning again (well,
kinda, if only with as much energy).
having downed only a litre of water
(leaving only half a litre more), a
litre of fruit juice and about 100
grams of assorted nuts since more
than twelve hours ago by this point,
it should have been a shock to
still be going by this point. don't
really need that much anyway, though.
gone on less for longer. hydration,
anyway, was the least of all worries,
the air being thick with water, ground
fog having been laid down hours ago.

up the dirt track, more cows. they make strange
sounds at night. didn't know anything yet,
though. that's still to come. a ute swang past
going the other way, indiscriminate hollers
from the passenger-side window. waved back
cheerily. so far from anything to be anything
but upbeat now. not even the heavy shroud of
tiredness could touch that, yet. the track wound
on forever. was stopping every half-kilometer
to stand and stretch, warding off the oncoming
aches. the onset was unwieldy, though. didn't
have long. past a B&B;, wondered whether anyone
actually ever stayed there (surely would, who'd
not revisit this place over and over once they'd
discovered it?)- certainly would've, having the
cash (apparently parts of "lion, witch and the
wardrobe" were filmed here. huh). further on, the
road turned back to seal, unfortunately, but
with small promise- surely, at least fairly
close by this point. turning a corner, a small
and infinitely beautiful indent against the bush,
a small paddock bunched up against it, stream
wound against the bases of trees, all lit by
the clear tones of a now unswathed moon, sat
aside the road. it was distilled perfection.
it was too much, just had to keep goin' or
risk shattering that image. next turn was
a set of DOC toilets, an excellent sign. must be
basically sitting on the path entry now. searched
all 'round the back for it, up the road, nothing.
not entirely despondent but bewildered, moved
forward and found a signpost. the falls were now
behind? turned around and searched even more
thoroughly, quiet hope turning to desperation
by the silent light of the moon. finally,
straight across the road from the toilets,
was the green and gold sign, cloaked in
darkness under clustering trees, professing
a ten-minute bushwalk to the

purakaunui falls. saturday. 1.32 am.**
venturing into the bush by the dull light
of a screen of a dying phone, the breeze
made small movements through the canopy. it
couldn't have been any more tranquil. edging
way through the winding cliffish track through
dense brush, the sound of a trickling stream
engorged into a lush symphony of water. crossing
a single-sided bridge across an unseeable chasm,
twinkling from the ferns behind became apparent.
turning off the dull light, the tiny neon bulbs of
glow-worms littered the dirt wall risen up about
half a metre, where the track had been cut out.
my heart soared. all heights of beauty come
together. continuing down the path, glow-worms
litter the surroundings and the rushing of
water comes to a roar. at a look-out platform
above the falls, nothing can be seen save a
slight glisten. down perilous steps (wouldn't
be too bad if you could actually see 'em) the
final viewing platform lay at level with the
bottom of the falls. they stood like a statue
in the dark, winding trails of thin white wash
through the shadows hung under trees. left
speechless from something hardly made out, turned
around and back up the stairs to where the
glowing dots seemed their most concentrated.
into the ferns above, clambered through and
around moss-painted tree trunks and came to rest
a couple hundred metres from the trail, under
a fern, under a rata. packed everything but
a blanket from nan into the bag, laid it out
on curled leaf litter and folded up into it,
feet too sore to remove 'em from boots, curling
knees up into the blanket and tucking a hand
between 'em to keep it warm. only face and
ankles exposed, watched the moon's light trickle
through canopy layers for a few hours, readjusting
tendons in legs as they came to ache. sleep (or
something resembling it) set in, somewhere
around four.

some time slightly before six, the realisation
that my legs had extended and become so cold that
they'd started cramping all the way through hit,
coupled with the sounds coming through the bush.
thank you, if you made it all the way through :>
John Niederbuhl Mar 2017
In translucent, green, carnival glass with
With curving grooves parallel bottom to top,
Are ***** willows arrayed
On the dining room table.
Angled, in water ensconced, bottoms cut,
Stems press together coming up,
And diverge coming out,
Spreading in all directions, like a spray,
Slanting, tipped towards me and away,
Bead-shaped bumps, furry, gray
On pencil thin branches:
Leafless first life of spring she gathered,
Taking them as a sign
That her father (who had died)
Was looking out for her, and
Setting them upon this table.

And I sit, looking out through them,
Through parted drapes and the frosted window,
Across the porch and over its railings,
Wrought iron, cold, black,
Beyond bare apple trees and bent lilacs,
Over frozen grass, brown and green, leaf-strewn,
Snow-dusted, windswept,
Beyond the split rail fence,
Over rose bushes that look dead
And through stiff maple limbs, crooked, gray,
Dark, desperate arms against a silver sky,
And beyond that, through power lines
And across the road
To the fields and distant hills,
And beyond that, beyond what we know for sure--
Sitting here, wondering what lies beyond that,
Beyond anything we are certain of,
Wondering what the spring and summer will bring:
I wonder, and look to the ***** willows again.
Deep thoughts
Robin Goodfellow Aug 2016
Where are you?

Are you here, hidden away behind
the blossoms? Are the petals kissing
you now? Are the vines sheltering
you from the world and every cruelty
in it? Are the branches giving way to
your loveliness, burdened by a light
heart, a heavy soul? Are the sun’s rays
adorning you, never giving your eyelids
blessed shadows? Will I find you,
amongst the willows?

No, I do not.

I see you sitting right here
next to me,
your cheek on my shoulder.
wichitarick Feb 28
Frozen Willows

Stroll beyond the knoll takes me on a familiar stage,  releasing my mind to higher places

Pacing a trail leading me along an edge, mind divided between forward or reverse

Wandering do I wonder the Cost of color, contemplate reasons for seasons, she reveals her beauty in phases

Frost has a cost, distance lost in an instant, exposed by a sunrise, illusions not easy to coerce

The ice while nice also a vise holding back fodder for the birds to eat, Warmth and color embrace emotions internally set the pace while winning new races

Basking in the beauty of distortion seasons keeping visions in proportion, Bare without an armor of green leaves, grass now ghostly, unknown images appear sensations something we can't rehearse

Imagination provides an amalgamation of contrasting perception, sensations so strong felt even if blind, emotions a fusion often in confusion laid out on many stages

Hear wind whistle through thistle, Mellow memory a memorial to the sound of willows on the water, spring green gives new noises, wispy willows having a rebirth

Unknown images appear, notes from birds we can hear, using natures messenger service showing her gladness, bathing us in beauty with unknown shamans

New night wandering left my mind pondering , blocked by blackness, left to roam alone hearing a moonbeam, feel the color of the sleeping flower, truth beyond a Sirens song , spring in the air,  Mystery has no history waiting to show her mirth

Emotions champions of all seasons, time passages hitching a free ride inside my mind, nature offering endless innovations on our sensations R.C.
Thoughts of spring green when suddenly frozen in an ice storm then buried in snow took a walk anyway and still heard the birds calling!  
Thanks for reading your thoughts are helpful. Peace Takes Practice. Rick
CHATTER of birds two by two raises a night song joining a litany of running water-sheer waters showing the russet of old stones remembering many rains.

And the long willows drowse on the shoulders of the running water, and sleep from much music; joined songs of day-end, feathery throats and stony waters, in a choir chanting new psalms.

It is too much for the long willows when low laughter of a red moon comes down; and the willows drowse and sleep on the shoulders of the running water.
1

Senlin sits before us, and we see him.
He smokes his pipe before us, and we hear him.
Is he small, with reddish hair,
Does he light his pipe with meditative stare,
And a pointed flame reflected in both eyes?
Is he sad and happy and foolish and wise?
Did no one see him enter the doors of the city,
Looking above him at the roofs and trees and skies?
'I stepped from a cloud', he says, 'as evening fell;
I walked on the sound of a bell;
I ran with winged heels along a gust;
Or is it true that I laughed and sprang from dust? . . .
Has no one, in a great autumnal forest,
When the wind bares the trees,
Heard the sad horn of Senlin slowly blown?
Has no one, on a mountain in the spring,
Heard Senlin sing?
Perhaps I came alone on a snow-white horse,-
Riding alone from the deep-starred night.
Perhaps I came on a ship whose sails were music,-
Sailing from moon or sun on a river of light.'

He lights his pipe with a pointed flame.
'Yet, there were many autumns before I came,
And many springs. And more will come, long after
There is no horn for me, or song, or laughter.

The city dissolves about us, and its walls
Become an ancient forest. There is no sound
Except where an old twig tires and falls;
Or a lizard among the dead leaves crawls;
Or a flutter is heard in darkness along the ground.

Has Senlin become a forest? Do we walk in Senlin?
Is Senlin the wood we walk in, -ourselves,-the world?
Senlin! we cry . . . Senlin! again . . . No answer,
Only soft broken echoes backward whirled . . .

Yet we would say: this is no wood at all,
But a small white room with a lamp upon the wall;
And Senlin, before us, pale, with reddish hair,
Lights his pipe with a meditative stare.

2

Senlin, walking beside us, swings his arms
And turns his head to look at walls and trees.
The wind comes whistling from shrill stars of winter,
The lights are jewels, black roots freeze.
'Did I, then, stretch from the bitter earth like these,
Reaching upward with slow and rigid pain
To seek, in another air, myself again?'

(Immense and solitary in a desert of rocks
Behold a bewildered oak
With white clouds screaming through its leafy brain.)
'Or was I the single ant, or tinier thing,
That crept from the rocks of buried time
And dedicated its holy life to climb
From atom to beetling atom, jagged grain to grain,
Patiently out of the darkness we call sleep
Into a hollow gigantic world of light
Thinking the sky to be its destined shell,
Hoping to fit it well!-'

The city dissolves about us, and its walls
Are mountains of rock cruelly carved by wind.
Sand streams down their wasting sides, sand
Mounts upward slowly about them: foot and hand
We crawl and bleed among them! Is this Senlin?

In the desert of Senlin must we live and die?
We hear the decay of rocks, the crash of boulders,
Snarling of sand on sand. 'Senlin!' we cry.
'Senlin!' again . . . Our shadows revolve in silence
Under the soulless brilliance of blue sky.

Yet we would say: there are no rocks at all,
Nor desert of sand . . . here by a city wall
White lights jewell the evening, black roots freeze,
And Senlin turns his head to look at trees.

3

It is evening, Senlin says, and in the evening,
By a silent shore, by a far distant sea,
White unicorns come gravely down to the water.
In the lilac dusk they come, they are white and stately,
Stars hang over the purple waveless sea;
A sea on which no sail was ever lifted,
Where a human voice was never heard.
The shadows of vague hills are dark on the water,
The silent stars seem silently to sing.
And gravely come white unicorns down to the water,
One by one they come and drink their fill;
And daisies burn like stars on the darkened hill.

It is evening Senlin says, and in the evening
The leaves on the trees, abandoned by the light,
Look to the earth, and whisper, and are still.
The bat with horned wings, tumbling through the darkness,
Breaks the web, and the spider falls to the ground.
The starry dewdrop gathers upon the oakleaf,
Clings to the edge, and falls without a sound.
Do maidens spread their white palms to the starlight
And walk three steps to the east and clearly sing?
Do dewdrops fall like a shower of stars from willows?
Has the small moon a ghostly ring? . . .
White skeletons dance on the moonlit grass,
Singing maidens are buried in deep graves,
The stars hang over a sea like polished glass . . .
And solemnly one by one in the darkness there
Neighing far off on the haunted air
White unicorns come gravely down to the water.

No silver bells are heard. The westering moon
Lights the pale floors of caverns by the sea.
Wet **** hangs on the rock. In shimmering pools
Left on the rocks by the receding sea
Starfish slowly turn their white and brown
Or writhe on the naked rocks and drown.
Do sea-girls haunt these caves-do we hear faint singing?
Do we hear from under the sea a faint bell ringing?
Was that a white hand lifted among the bubbles
And fallen softly back?
No, these shores and caverns are all silent,
Dead in the moonlight; only, far above,
On the smooth contours of these headlands,
White amid the eternal black,
One by one in the moonlight there
Neighing far off on the haunted air
The unicorns come down to the sea.

4

Senlin, walking before us in the sunlight,
Bending his small legs in a peculiar way,
Goes to his work with thoughts of the universe.
His hands are in his pockets, he smokes his pipe,
He is happily conscious of roofs and skies;
And, without turning his head, he turns his eyes
To regard white horses drawing a small white hearse.
The sky is brilliant between the roofs,
The windows flash in the yellow sun,
On the hard pavement ring the hoofs,
The light wheels softly run.
Bright particles of sunlight fall,
Quiver and flash, gyrate and burn,
Honey-like heat flows down the wall,
The white spokes dazzle and turn.

Senlin, walking before us in the sunlight,
Regards the hearse with an introspective eye.
'Is it my childhood there,' he asks,
'Sealed in a hearse and hurrying by?'
He taps his trowel against a stone;
The trowel sings with a silver tone.

'Nevertheless I know this well.
Bury it deep and toll a bell,
Bury it under land or sea,
You cannot bury it save in me.'

It is as if his soul had become a city,
With noisily peopled streets, and through these streets
Senlin himself comes driving a small white hearse . . .
'Senlin!' we cry. He does not turn his head.
But is that Senlin?-Or is this city Senlin,-
Quietly watching the burial of the dead?
Dumbly observing the cortege of its dead?
Yet we would say that all this is but madness:
Around a distant corner trots the hearse.
And Senlin walks before us in the sunlight
Happily conscious of his universe.

5

In the hot noon, in an old and savage garden,
The peach-tree grows. Its cruel and ugly roots
Rend and rifle the silent earth for moisture.
Above, in the blue, hang warm and golden fruits.
Look, how the cancerous roots crack mould and stone!
Earth, if she had a voice, would wail her pain.
Is she the victim, or is the tree the victim?
Delicate blossoms opened in the rain,
Black bees flew among them in the sunlight,
And sacked them ruthlessly; and no a bird
Hangs, sharp-eyed, in the leaves, and pecks the fruit;
And the peach-tree dreams, and does not say a word.
. . . Senlin, tapping his trowel against a stone,
Observes this tree he planted: it is his own.

'You will think it strange,' says Senlin, 'but this tree
Utters profound things in this garden;
And in its silence speaks to me.
I have sensations, when I stand beneath it,
As if its leaves looked at me, and could see;
And those thin leaves, even in windless air,
Seem to be whispering me a choral music,
Insubstantial but debonair.

"Regard," they seem to say,
"Our idiot root, which going its brutal way
Has cracked your garden wall!
Ugly, is it not?
A desecration of this place . . .
And yet, without it, could we exist at all?"
Thus, rustling with importance, they seem to me
To make their apology;
Yet, while they apologize,
Ask me a wary question with their eyes.
Yes, it is true their origin is low-
Brutish and dull and cruel . . . and it is true
Their roots have cracked the wall. But do we know
The leaves less cruel-the root less beautiful?
Sometimes it seems as if there grew
In the dull garden of my mind
A tree like this, which, singing with delicate leaves,
Yet cracks the wall with cruel roots and blind.
Sometimes, indeed, it appears to me
That I myself am such a tree . . .'

. . . And as we hear from Senlin these strange words
So, slowly, in the sunlight, he becomes this tree:
And among the pleasant leaves hang sharp-eyed birds
While cruel roots dig downward secretly.

6

Rustling among his odds and ends of knowledge
Suddenly, to his wonder, Senlin finds
How Cleopatra and Senebtisi
Were dug by many hands from ancient tombs.
Cloth after scented cloth the sage unwinds:
Delicious to see our futile modern sunlight
Dance like a harlot among these Dogs and Dooms!

First, the huge pyramid, with rock on rock
Bloodily piled to heaven; and under this
A gilded cavern, bat festooned;
And here in rows on rows, with gods about them,
Cloudily lustrous, dim, the sacred coffins,
Silver starred and crimson mooned.

What holy secret shall we now uncover?
Inside the outer coffin is a second;
Inside the second, smaller, lies a third.
This one is carved, and like a human body;
And painted over with fish and bull and bird.
Here are men walking stiffly in procession,
Blowing horns or lifting spears.
Where do they march to? Where do they come from?
Soft whine of horns is in our ears.

Inside, the third, a fourth . . . and this the artist,-
A priest, perhaps-did most to make resemble
The flesh of her who lies within.
The brown eyes widely stare at the bat-hung ceiling.
The hair is black, The mouth is thin.
Princess! Secret of life! We come to praise you!
The torch is lowered, this coffin too we open,
And the dark air is drunk with musk and myrrh.
Here are the thousand white and scented wrappings,
The gilded mask, and jeweled eyes, of her.

And now the body itself, brown, gaunt, and ugly,
And the hollow scull, in which the brains are withered,
Lie bare before us. Princess, is this all?
Something there was we asked that is not answered.
Soft bats, in rows, hang on the lustered wall.

And all we hear is a whisper sound of music,
Of brass horns dustily raised and briefly blown,
And a cry of grief; and men in a stiff procession
Marching away and softly gone.

7

'And am I then a pyramid?' says Senlin,
'In which are caves and coffins, where lies hidden
Some old and mocking hieroglyph of flesh?
Or am I rather the moonlight, spreading subtly
Above those stones and times?
Or the green blade of grass that bravely grows
Between to massive boulders of black basalt
Year after year, and fades and blows?

Senlin, sitting before us in the lamplight,
Laughs, and lights his pipe. The yellow flame
Minutely flares in his eyes, minutely dwindles.
Does a blade of grass have Senlin for a name?
Yet we would say that we have seen him somewhere,
A tiny spear of green beneath the blue,
Playing his destiny in a sun-warmed crevice
With the gigantic fates of frost and dew.

Does a spider come and spin his gossamer ladder
Rung by silver rung,
Chaining it fast to Senlin? Its faint shadow
Flung, waveringly, where his is flung?
Does a raindrop dazzle starlike down his length
Trying his futile strength?
A snowflake startle him? The stars defeat him?
Through aeons of dusk have birds above him sung?
Time is a wind, says Senlin; time, like music,
Blows over us its mournful beauty, passes,
And leaves behind a shadowy reflection,-
A helpless gesture of mist above the grasses.

8

In cold blue lucid dusk before the sunrise,
One yellow star sings over a peak of snow,
And melts and vanishes in a light like roses.
Through slanting mist, black rocks appear and glow.

The clouds flow downward, slowly as grey glaciers,
Or up to a pale rose-azure pass.
Blue streams ****** down from snow to boulders,
From boulders to white grass.

Icicles on the pine tree melt
And softly flash in the sun:
In long straight lines the star-drops fall
One by one.

Is a voice heard while the shadows still are long,
Borne slowly down on the sparkling air?
Is a thin bell heard from the peak of silence?
Is someone among the high snows there?

Where the blue stream flows coldly among the meadows
And mist still clings to rock and tree
Senlin walks alone; and from that twilight
Looks darkly up, to see

The calm unmoving peak of snow-white silence,
The rocks aflame with ice, the rose-blue sky . . .
Ghost-like, a cloud descends from twinkling ledges,
To nod before the dwindling sun and die.

'Something there is,' says Senlin, 'in that mountain,
Something forgotten now, that once I knew . . .'
We walk before a sun-tipped peak in silence,
Our shadows descend before us, long and blue.
JM Jun 2012
Mother Summer's peace,
Cottonwoods, swaying willows.
Soil and ancient roots.
Shelly Woods Oct 2014
Willows whisper secrets in my ear;
secrets that I cannot hear.
I wish and wonder why
the wisdom I am given is so profound.

Deep, intense… vision and insight
without a useful purpose.
Feels much like a thorn I cannot find…
constantly digging into my side.

I do not understand the what or the when;
Amnesia has stolen most of my development.
But memories are more than mere facts;
The procedures and the logic and the sense remain.

A sense of which I cannot describe…
It tastes a bit like dry, red wine.
Bites my tongue, rendering all vocalization
incoherent; all memories distorted.

I search, I scan, I compare, I analyze…
And, ultimately, I suspend.
Permanence I will fight to the end.
Purpose is to be made… and not to be found.

Perhaps this coherence is not profound.
Perhaps it is of common sense.
Always Ally Sep 2018
Somewhere in the willows
You hear it through the walls
Starts as a whisper
But then it soon calls

Make your way to
The adventure that awaits
You are the key
That opens the gates

Troubles and trickery
A daring little spell
Bring your wits about you
Hope it goes well

Witches are brewing
Skeletons will dance
Vampires are preying
You'll be put in a trance

Haunted are the willows
Who call out your name
Answer to them
You must finish the game

— The End —