Tuesday, December 30, 2014

dream-elixir, song of stone

Would you find an end to your wanderings, weary traveler?

Follow with your gaze the arcing flutter of the wings of a white crane until you climb the slate steps to a clearing on the slope of the mountain. 

There you find a most unusual sight: rooted firmly in the gray rock, a translucent crystal tree, which stretches its limbs to the sky, where the crane settles into her nest. A tree as smooth and glittering as a cacophony of bright gems, as perfectly whole as a grail of glass. As radiant as ice.

A warm wind moves through the crystal leaves, and they shimmer while they chime, for within the tree a living flame glows, undulating in waves of rose-red and gold.

At the touch of your hand, the pellucid stone trunk of the tree parts in two and you find yourself sheltered in the center of its crystalline heart-wood.

Within, the tree appears much larger than without. You look up and see that the refulgent walls of your shelter are carved with row upon row of curious runes. The outline of a dragon is etched into the crystal walls near the disappearing door.

Nearly invisible phosphorescent blue-green shapes coax you further within, to lie upon an impossibly soft cloud-bed, where they minister to your sore feet and aching limbs. 

You hear the faint chatter of a stream trickling in the distance. Further in, you glimpse a grassy knoll, where the figure of a forest nymph twirls momentarily, then disappears. Somewhere, someone is singing....

You close your eyes, and the curtain lifts on an indigo sky; a brilliant star gleams in its center.

While you sink into dream after dream, your pain subsides bit by bit, until it is as if the flame in the center of the tree has replaced all other sensations in your body, infusing it with its gentle and tender glow.

So this is peace at last, you murmur.

A reassuring flicker answers.











when trees as gilded as bees

Above the 61st parallel, the colors of Autumn mark our parting with the bees, and the last days of real warmth. I had begun to transl...

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