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Here amongst these golden cliffs
Glowing otherworldly in the light of a feral moon,
Winding through ancient trees,
A wisp of mist, a ghost
A lost one
Breathes deeply of a life almost forgotten
A life swallowed by time
Drowned by tears long lost to a river
To the billowing ocean
Salt to salt
She remembers, but memory is but a dream
She asks the dancing wind, What is left?
Am I alone? she whispers, surrounded
By silent rock and gently swaying bough.
She wraps herself in a cloak of humanity,
Searching for purpose in a world changed
She dives into seas of art, flying wildly through
Currents of word and color and dream,
Seeking beauty
Seeking truth
Seeking life
Finding broken reflections
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Loud, obnoxious teenaged-girl laughing is not particularly conducive to writing a post. Hm... Especially when I already have my earphones turned up almost to unbearable level, and still, it is disgustingly loud. Ah, the joys of communal living.

Last night, I went with a group to see Yosemite Falls by the light of the full moon. I'd been before to the first vantage point we stopped at, which was quite distant from the falls. It was as beautiful as before, the cliffs glowing with an otherworldly golden light, the constellations bright, stars shooting across the night sky, the distant sound of the waterfall carried on the wind. Then the group I was with piled into the vehicles we'd taken, and we drove to the Lower Yosemite Falls, which is essentially the same waterfall, but flowing off a ledge lower on the cliff. This short little paved trail ended in a rocky line right beside the waterfall, close enough to be bathed in its mist, and it was absolutely awe inspiring. Even the most street-hardened LA-originating faux thug of the group was amazed. The mist from the falls was illuminated by the moonlight, forming a broadly arcing rainbow that one could almost reach out and touch. I wish I could describe it in a way to do it justice, but I doubt that is possible.

We have moved into the new laundry room. It is too small, and too far from the majority of the cabins to be efficient for running calls. Alex was bemoaning how good the setup had looked on paper, at which point I looked at the diagram he had made. I told him he might want to try to draw it to scale next time. Such is life amongst fuckwitted management. I'm sure there are excellent, intelligent, and considerate managers out there somewhere. Unfortunately, there aren't any here.

I suppose that is the extent of my ramblings for today...
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I pass through a golden valley, and time bleeds into time, past melding with present. The rolling hills, the jagged mountains, all crumple into a seabed, crushed by uncountable weight of salted water. All manner of primevil creatures live here, long lost, long forgotten. I dart and flit with them, spiralling and dancing in underwater flight, echoes of what is now ancient and gone undulating within the currents.

I wonder at how this could be as I gaze through cool glass at passing fields, massive oaks and grazing cattle. It is like another world, veiled, just hidden behind this one, but just as real. What is time? Is the past truth? Is it memory? Is it hiding in the ancient light of the stars that gift us with long dead light and life?

What is Now? What can it be? Is the mind its creator?

I am a creature of the wild, flying free and untamed, seeking something un-nameable, but in a world diminishing, slowly dying. Perhaps that which I seek is like these stars-- only a memory, wake of a dream. Is the Sun shedding light to some distant world which sees her light only long after it is extinguished? Is a lone soul gazing at her light and wondering what manner of souls have passed through her solar system, what life once walked on her planets?

A cacophony of music, of color and movement and word flames high from my soul, a funeral pyre, an effigy in your honour.
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I'm doing some internet research on Hetch Hetchy, and I've come across some interesting things, which aligned with some of what I had guessed about the area, in that it was a long-standing Native American territory.

The Hetch Hetchy valley was flooded in 1921 by the City of San Francisco in order to create a water reservoir for the city, amidst much protest by the environmentally-conscious explorer John Muir and others interested in preserving the valley, which was reputed to be quite possibly the most awe-inspiringly beautiful within Yosemite. What is not often told is that Hetch Hetchy Valley was the historical home to the Paiute Indians, who were rivals to the more often discussed Miwok. There also is much controversy amongst the modern Paiute regarding their elimination from the modern rendition of the history of the area, which evidently even goes so far as to rename the famous Chief Tenaya, who was Paiute, as a Miwok. Yes, I could well understand some tension from both the departed and the living at the destruction of an anscestral home and the erasure of their tribe from historical memory. Ancient pictographs were found in Pate Valley within Hetch Hetchy, and the oldest Native American basket of California origin also was found in Hetch Hetchy, both of Paiute origin. The valley was known to be a shelter and hiding place for the tribe when they were faced with crises.

I am forced to wonder if a few last remaining Paiute were lingering in the Valley, refusing to leave their home, when it was flooded. That answer may be a bit harder to find.

There are efforts to restore the Hetch Hetchy Valley to its former state.

One thing to take note of is that the Hetch Hetchy reservoir is no longer San Francisco's primary water supply-- Toulomne River is.

"Removal of the dam would result in the loss of less than two-tenths of one percent of California's yearly electricity use. All the lost power could be replaced by the programs described above [see web site given above], plus an energy efficiency program. The efficiency program would actually save homeowners and businesses more than the cost of implementing the energy efficiency program. It would also be possible to build solar, wind, or conventional gas-fired power plants."
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It is dark and drizzly outside today. I'm glad I got my hike in yesterday. I headed towards Birch Lake, but because the path there is so short and I wanted to actually walk a little, I took the branch to the right. Wandered around awhile, found myself at the campground for Mather, sat at a picnic table and wrote for awhile. Then, I started to return home. Now, this trail I had followed has numerous branchoffs in every direction, and I found myself quickly confused, eventually so turned around that I had no idea where the road was. I knew I wasn't *that* far out, but I didn't want to get myself really lost. I came on the national forest boundary a few times, which was a pretty telling sign that I was going the wrong direction. Finally, getting tired of walking in circles, I took a deep breath, closed my eyes, and *felt* the right direction. I started walking that way and soon found myself back at the lake, which is a pretty straight shoot back home. Don't ask me how I managed this. I have a terrible sense of direction, but evidently some subconscious part of me knows how to navigate the forest, or perhaps was more aware of my location than my conscious mind. All the same, I'm going to be far more careful next time to take note of unique landmarks, the number of trail branches, and direction.

I am working in the morning. I'm about to throttle Alex. I get good and accustomed to the night shift, and he insists on switching us around for no apparent reason, even though all three of us in laundry have discussed and agreed on the best shifts for each of us. He insists that it wouldn't be "fair" to me to work nights and only nights, because there will be extra things to do during evening shift once we get into full swing (stocking sheds, etc). Erm... I really don't care. I have to do extra work already. Screwing up peoples' internal clocks is not the way to promote some twisted version of "fairness," especially when the staff has voiced their desires very clearly, and their reasons for them. This says to me that this isn't about fairness, but about power. I find it amusing that, upon first meeting Alex, he rather snottily said that there is a power play in the laundry room. Something told me that wasn't the whole story, so I observed those working there. The only power play I'm seeing is on the part of Alex. Oh, don't get me wrong, I fully expected a load of bullshit when I came up here. I've been here before, after all, and it's really the same crap, just different people. My philosophy is that there will be bullshit to cope with at any job, but if the benefits outweigh it, then it's worth it. I've been here three seperate times now, so something's working for me. Even with the crap abounding here, the job itself even is preferable to what I had previously.

My attempts at gathering a paranormal investigations team have yet to come to anything. The only person I've come across who might have an interest is my roommate, Stacey, but two people won't exactly make an effective team. On the research angle, I've been combing Amazon for books on the area. I'll be making a purchase as soon as I can do so. It seems that the Hetch Hetchy dam, down the road from here (which this place was incidentally built to support the construction of), was surrounded by a huge controversy during its construction. The City of San Francisco was hoping to use it as a monopoly on a fresh water source, while John Muir and fellow ecologists fought tooth and nail to preserve the valley. Muir, unfortunately, lost. The dam area has a very... odd feel to it. It may well have something to do with the violent destruction of a thriving ecosystem, but my gut tells me there may be more than that. So a little research may go a long way....

Hetch Hetchy is a definite interest from an investigator's point of view, but it's no training ground. There is far too much area to cover there, and the outdoor setting creates more variables, making it harder to run a safe and effective investigation. I'd like to start out with the Lodge building, if I can ever garner enough interest. It's a contained setting, relatively small space, easier to keep track of what's going on.

And, dinner is almost ready. So I will close for now.
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I slipped quietly away from the chaos and bustle to sink with silence into the forest, melding into the trees that undulated in the breeze, alive with these living. I listened to the wind, as he whispered and sang, flitting through the leaves, winding through stone and branch, gliding across my face and through my hair. He seemed wise, so I asked him, Why? because I could not find the answer, however much I looked. He breathed and flew and danced, and perhaps he answered, but a wisp of cloud edged away from the sun and golden light poured over me. So I asked the sun, Why? She was silent to my ears, but in her light, the colors around me flowed and flashed and glittered, so many layers swirling within themselves, hues I had never before taken note of. The colors shifted in the wind, brought awake in the light, and so I asked them, Why? They coalesced into the rough flesh of a redwood that reached for invisible stars, caressed by the breeze, crisscrossed with patterns of light and shadow. The tree's roots sank deep into the earth, nourished by rich soil, solid, still young even at his great height, yet so old compared to me. So I asked him, Why? Silence answered, a silence with the depths of the ocean, and the outer reaches of the universe, silence rooted in the core of being. Silence of a weathered soul, of rings surrounding rings surrounding rings, each a story, a tale of life. The tree's silence filled the world, touched my dreams, flew on the wind and danced with embracing light and shadow. As I listened, closing my eyes, I thought I began to hear a song within that silence...
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The internet is throwing a hissy fit today.

It is, once again (thankfully) my Friday. I'm going to have to stir up enough energy to do some hiking or some other such activity that immerses me in the natural world, far from the lodge and people, because I desperately need it. I've been sliding into full-blown antisocial mode these last couple of days. I am, as I've said before, quite the introvert, and I need time alone to feel balanced. This is one of the downsides to living in a communal situation like this-- there really is no personal space, no privacy, no silence of which to speak. The woods are my sanctuary, as they have always been. I need time to create, time to think, time to write, time to meditate.

I am in desperate need of painting supplies. It is killing me to be out in all this breathtaking, inspiring beauty, and not be able to paint. I brought my pastels, but nothing to use them on (the size paper I use is far too big to transport without destroying), and I don't yet have an easel. And I need to buy a set of good quality oils, and the associated supplies, as well, because I deliberately left my cheap trial set with S. in Texas, as it was mostly used up, and, well, cheap-- you get what you pay for. I'd wanted to give oils a try, because I'd not used them before, but didn't want to pay an arm and a leg for them before I could determine whether they were right for me or no. I do love them. They provide all the color intensity that I love-- which is why I like the pastels-- but also allow for wonderful detail work-- which is next to impossible with the pastels, unless your working surface is the size of, say, a wall. The only downside is that oil painting takes *much* longer, because of the length of drying time.

Hm... I suppose my rambling about art supplies isn't exactly riveting. But, it's a part of my life.

It seems to be lunchtime now, so I should slide off here before the food all disappears...
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Here I am once again, searching for something tactile, something tangible. Something I can grasp in my hands, catch the scent, something I can see in all its many layers of color swirling within shadow and light. It seems a long time since I could do such a thing. I have felt... cloistered. Isolated, even amongst loved ones. Edging along the outskirts of a society I have never quite melded into completely, and feeling the life slowly drained from me in doing so. I feel alive out here. I need the connection, the sweet scented breath of the universe flowing through my lungs as I touch the cool stone beneath me, the rough flesh of a tree, as I feel the carpet of fir sheddings and mountain soil beneath my feet. This is real. This is where I belong, at least for now.
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It's cold again. In fact, it was snowing yesterday. Winter has just yelled a massive "Fake out!" I like it though. It's a reprieve from oppressive heat.

This lodge has a long and somewhat interesting history. The place was originally built in 1921, as a post for the building of the massive Hetch Hetchy dam down the road (Rumor also has it that the place was a moonshine brewery and brothel as well during that time). It's changed hands numerous times, but the original structure still stands-- what is now the tavern and restaurant.

The place is also quite active paranormally. Numerous accounts of a woman in a red dress sighted in the tavern have been reported, as well as a man in a top hat in one of the original cabins. I myself, the last time I was here, saw a shadowy apparition on the road late one night (accompanied by a friend who saw the same thing), and another friend (my then-supervisor Cathy) and I experienced some odd phenomena in one of the cabins as a sliding door lifted itself from its hinges and dropped back, and Cathy's necklace was lifted and lightly jerked about the same time. I came up here intending to do some research on history, folklore, and ghost stories in the area, curious how they tie together. I've not been able to do much about that yet, however, but I'm hoping soon I'll be able to get to the Groveland library and do some reading.

And now, lunchtime is nearing. We are served by employee chefs, and usually (usually) the food is quite good. So, I will draw this to a close for now.
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When I first arrived here this year, I was housed in the employee dorms with a roommate who was not overtly difficult, but who I found little commonality with. Fortunately, a few days back, I was moved back into the double-wide trailer where I lived before, and my new roommate arrived a day later. Her name is Stacey, she works in the recreation department, and she is actually the first person I've met here that I've found anything in common with. I can actually converse with her without being looked at sideways... *laughs* I find this quite reassuring... I was beginning to wonder if I'd be able to develop any real friendships here. We spent several hours last night over a bottle of merlot and a delicious crab/artichoke dip in the bar and just hung out, talking about everything under the sun.

I admit, I am something of an introvert. I sometimes have a hard time finding common ground with people, things to converse about. I also am terrible at small talk. So most of the time, when in a group setting, I will simply sit and... listen. This can be quite entertaining at times, actually, not to mention insightful. You can tell a lot about people when you're not fighting to interject your own two cents into a conversation. One girl (an employee) actually said there were too many trees out here (is there such a thing?). I must wonder why she came if she is uncomfortable in natural settings...

A few days back, for Jessica's birthday (she is the assistant manager and quite an awesome gal), a rather elaborate Greek-themed party was thrown in the tavern. Of course, there were togas. And of course, I decided to be the black sheep, quite literally, head to toe in black-- corset, sheer top, pants, and boots. Jessica's costume was quite creative-- she went as Medusa, complete with rubber snakes in her hair and dangling from her earlobes. There were costumes ranging from bedsheets to elaborate, homemade dresses that looked like they came from upscale boutiques. There was a feast of quail, chicken, and goose, aged cheeses, fruit, and flambe. I only dance when drunk, but about a margarita and a half helped with that. (I only dance when drunk because I'm quite suspicious that I look like a complete fool when I do so)

This is the last day of my weekend. I'm feeling quite lazy right now, actually, more creatively inclined than for any kind of physical activity such as hiking, although I may wander down to Birch Lake for some meditation. Working space is somewhat limited here, as far as creative projects, but since the in-house count is quite low today, I may just set up in the rec center with its tables and couches and fireplace, plug in the earphones, and spend some time working on one of my graphic novel projects. I'm working on a different project than before, as my old project has been relegated to computer hell in Houston and has yet to be recovered (I was almost finished with the writing portion of that one too... that was quite a blow. I may have to let that one lie for a little while until I can rework it from a fresh start).

It seems the last clinging vestiges of winter have finally released their hold. The last of the snow has melted, and the temperature is steadily climbing day by day. The internet connection is actually working today as well. I'm dubious as to how long that will last.
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I've been here before.

This is what I find myself continuously saying to people these days. I've come back, after five years. I've returned.

The first year I was here, I arrived with two friends. The next year, I was accompanied by one friend. This time, I came alone, the only one not to have joined the Coast Guard, gotten married, found myself suddenly as stepmother to a child, or as a homeowner in Texan suburbia. I'm still free, and California called relentlessly, shading my dreams, echoing in small patches of forest, tugging at my heart until I finally surrendered. I can't say for certain if I will stay indefinitely. I can never say that for certain-- I have too much wanderlust still rushing through my veins. But it is home for now, the towering evergreens, the granite cliffs that take on that otherworldly golden glow during the full moon, the stars that dance dizzyingly overhead at night, the unrivaled sense of peace and connectedness I feel when surrounded by that which is wild. Even the cramped dorm room, the relentless piles of sheets and towels to be washed, the laundry room echoing with music, opened to the night breeze, the tavern with its rustic wooden wall panelling and rough-hewn benches and tables are home to me. It is, in many ways, as though I never left.

I've opened this new journal as an excersize in creative replenishment, as my other, older avenues seem to have run dry for the time being. This is a fresh start, a new chapter.

There is much I wish to experience here at the Green, and much I wish to write of. Here, I will muse and ramble and write, recording thoughts and feelings and experiences. I may post art and photographs, when I have the tools to do so. I may write fiction or poetry. I may rant and rave, pour out a broken heart, fill these pages with joy or fascination or longing. Those who wish may read and comment, though the internet access up here is very unreliable, so I cannot guarantee timely replies. I do try to eventually respond to everyone who comments in a respectful fashion, however. Some of you already know me as siabha_maellyn on my other account.

sometime soon, I hope to post more.
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Just a quick post. Firstly, apologies for not being around more; I haven't had a computer to work on lately (I'm borrowing a friend's now). Second, I am returning to California in a few days, back to Evergreen Lodge. I *should* have better net access up there, and I will be buying a laptop soon as well. I just find that I miss the area, and I can make more up there, with less living expenses, than I can here, and, well... those of you who know me, know how I get when I stay in one place for too long. So... off I go again.

More soon, hopefully.
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(File under "nature of reality" interest to kick off the interests list essays :P Who says I have to do them in order?)

I've noticed a rather intriguing phenomena...

I will some nights put on music specially designed for sleep or meditation when I go to bed at night. Usually I can't sleep with music playing, but these tracks placed on repeat all night actually knock me out like a light. All that's fine and good, but when I wake up the next morning, turn off the music, and start going about my day, I can still hear the music playing. As in, I will pause as I become aware of it, tilt my head sideways, and *listen*, trying to tell myself that my subconscious has merely put the track on "repeat" and there really is no actual *sound*, that it is in my mind. Yet, my ears can't tell the difference, even when I continuously tell myself that I'm *not* actually hearing it. (rather like an optical illusion, I would think) It dies out after awhile, if I ignore it.

And, once again, proof that our "senses" are not always reliable....

But wait a minute...

Aren't our "senses" signals that are projected by our brains? Even when our senses percieve something that is supposedly "real?"

There's so much talk these days about shaping one's own reality. To change one's world, one must change the way one views things, changing perceptions. I think a lot of people get confused by that, thinking that if they change their *surface* perception... their conscious thoughts... that it will result in change. And maybe that's the first step? It's certainly a start. But it seems to me that true perception of reality starts on a subconscious level-- as does the *bending* of reality. I suppose the question is, how does one go about changing one's subconscious?

I guess the easy answer is meditation (though anyone who's done it knows that achieving a deep meditative state in which such perceptions can be effectively altered is anything but easy). And then there are the recordings such as the one I mentioned above, reputedly utilizing certain frequencies that trigger such states. If certain frequencies could be used to help modify levels of consciousness (of course, nothing works one hundred percent of the time), then I wonder if frequencies could also be used to help gently direct subconscious beliefs. This... this is quite an unsettling thought, actually. I saw a video at one point... I'll have to look for it. Scientists were watching the reactions of an amoeba, I believe it was, to certain frequencies of sound being played. It would literally change its shape, changing to fantastic and symmetrical shapes such as a star, according to the frequency played. Right. I need to try to find that one... I'll post it as soon as I do (hopefully it's still in existence). Off to do a Youtube hunt... I've already found some fascinating clips! Will post again soon.
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Tell me a memory you have of us. Something that struck you, or stuck with you. If you haven't met me, make up a future memory. (Hint: everything's better with robots.)
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The golden notes from a piano fill this empty room I am in, projected from plastic speakers. An echo. A remnant of life... Sometimes it seems the sweeping, soaring myriad of colors and sound and texture and words and passion are a bard, weaving tales of some long-forgotten time when life was life, not this shallow pit of maddening mundanity it has become... not this meaninglessness. This art, this music and poetry and storytelling... they seem sometimes to be like the crumbling marble of Rome, like the ancient monoliths, a decaying, moss-drapped Mayan temple-- remnants. Memories.

How does one bring these remnants to life, to full, breathing color and sound that sweeps through the world, that reminds the sleeping ones to wake, to feel, to live?

Where is Home?

I'm not certain it is a place. These thoughts filled my sleep last night... home is the wind, the stars that spin through the night sky, those ancient dancers in the heavens that are so full of flaming, screaming passion that no mortal could move near them and live, the mountains and the mist-shrouded wood, the fierce cry of the ocean, the stinging rain and hail and billowing clouds and the lightning that slashes mercilessly at the darkened air, the silver glow of the moon, the swirling nebulae and the crushing cascade of the waterfall, the light with its rainbow of colors and burning intensity and healing touch and burning, consuming alchemical fire, the darkness that dances and shifts and breathes and caresses and stalks... the heart that touches it all, the heart that becomes it all. And those that I love... those who still remain in my heart even if my mind has forgotten them, these who are family, who are fragments of my soul, eyes and voices and silvery strains of ancient song, somewhere, felt and heard and seen but not always remembered, only whispers of mist in my dreams now, but for the scant few that I've found....
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I moved through the forest last night, cloaked in indigo twilight and shadows stretching across moss-softened earth. A song exploded forth, unable to be contained, purity of essence, of being. Silvery strains answered, low and high flowing like water, like ocean tides, like moonlight and the dancing wind. I saw them then. I do not know who they were, but their eyes were endless, ageless, compassionate, formed of the lightning and the stars. I wept, raged, pleaded, questioned, tears cascading, words useless and unspoken in this realm of song and breath and fathomless passion. They fastened a pendant around my neck, a blue stone, perfectly round, glowing from within a twisted vinework of silver. They put a white feather in my hair. And then I was awake again, in my bed.....
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New painting: The Soulless Sword of Desire.

Not Safe For Work! )
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If one can unravel these delirious ramblings,
Illuminate the riddle,
Unearth the mystery of old—
These images, these trapped spirits of fleshless eternity
That linger just behind the eyes,
Just past bloodstained words,
A stumbling step into a half-forgotten dream:

Of fire and ash-choked wind,
Of tears falling into a blackened pool,
Of crystals that capture the eyes with stolen light.
The song that was carried on the wind.
The eternity-endless-black depths of a raven's eye
As it looked upon the broken angel in the snow.
Flight and fury and prismatic dance.
Dauntless time, empty time. Meaningless time.
Whispers in the night, caresses of dreams alive, living, dreaming.

Do you know? Do you understand?
Has the song awakened once more,
Within shells battered and barren,
Ceaselessly stumbling,
But housing That which Came Before,
And That which is Yet to Be?

What is the Tide bringing?
Why does the path seem so dark?
Destiny is Choice
Honesty with Fortitude,
With Heart,
With purity of soul,

Does Love weave this song?
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Outside of Time we move

Past illusion

Present dream

Future echo—

We are all of ourselves

All of our lives

All of our journeys

Drawn into a single drop

Of crystal clear Being

Melded with the stars

Burning like the sun

Liquid songs of the moon

Shadows like a velvet abyss—

All and nothing,



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Hidden within his fortress he waits,

The silent protector

A shadow cast from eons ago

An eclipse, an echo

An ageless phantom.

His eyes see far

His voice carries on the wind

The touch of a dream

Substance of the insubstantial

His eyes fix on the horizon as the storm boils without his windows

Slashing his walls

Trembling his foundations--

Yet the storm is not his alone.

Does he think that distance keeps her safe?

She needs no protector

She wants no white knight

She desires only the transmutation of dream to substance

Of completion

Of alchemy

Soul of her soul

Heart of her heart

Oneness of eternity

Of timelessness

Of elemental binding

Fusion of the stars that fell

That split with a thunderous crack

Spinning apart with blinding wake

To bury themselves in the earth

To forget they were stars….

Only the Knowing that is not Thinking remains

Only the Feeling that is not Memory lingers

All has been contained in the Now

And the Soon to Come

As blind feet tread darkened paths

To seek understanding

To seek beauty

To seek life




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January 2014



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