So It Begins: A Story Is Born

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Katzenfee50, Pixabay

Does anyone else have difficulty with finding an appropriate title for their posts? The majority of mine loiter expectantly, try to catch my eye and impress with their marketing ploys. This one lingers in the background reticently and then fixes me with a hypnotic gaze. I’m intrigued and beckon them to come forward.

They exude a sense of melancholy and passion. What are they going to reveal? I’m given hints of old roses, musk, sandalwood, myrrh and honey.  Other scents are carried on winds that have swept in from parched lands waiting for the kiss of rain. A romantic image to be sure, yet it captures the imagination like a lover’s gaze.

I see a red rose placed on a leather-bound book. An offering worthy of the attentions of one’s heart. Fingers gently open the pages and alight on a particular page. The words shimmer and invite further exploration. A hand hovers above the beautifully crafted composition. These are wise words from the Persian Sufi poet Hafiz (Khwāja Šamsu d-Dīn Muḥammad Hāfez-e Šīrāzī):

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The breath catches in the throat and I acknowledge the truth of what he says. The sleeping beauty of one’s heart flutters like the wings of a caged bird; sings its song of sepia memories, emotion filled and pained. Hands glide over the chest and pull away the thornless rambling rose. There is no sacrifice to be made on this occasion, no drops of blood offered for the transmutation. The alchemy has already begun.

Hands caress the sleeping heart, waken it from a deep sleep, kiss away hurts, offer up potent perfumes and heady wines. Love is lavished upon the wakened beauty, and a world of Light poured upon the sacred altar in its innermost being. So it begins, it is purified and made whole, ready to glide over the vastness of a world waiting on its presence. So it begins, the breath of life taken inwards, initiating new purpose.

So it begins, a story of endless corridors in a mansion filled with sunlight. A place of whispered conversations and unbridled laughter. Hear the flutter of doves’ wings and water cascading from fountains. Truly a place of paradisiacal beauty.

The imagination is captured in a lover’s gaze and the Story is written. Is there more to come?

I was initially finding it quite difficult to come up with something meaningful. Several versions were scrapped and on the last attempt the words were thrown down like a carpet of petals. What a relief!

So ends the Story, a promise is fulfilled and a writer’s thirst quenched.

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Ancient Song – Thursday photo prompt: Valley #writephoto

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Image: Sue Vincent

My offering this week for Sue’s Thursday Photo Prompt.

A sense of something greater than the reality of this world washed over the priestly figure gazing out to sea. For as long as memory had existed his brethren had stood at the head of the valley to pay homage to the Solar Logos. They gave thanks for another day of life, of light and warmth. Daily they praised the mystery hidden deep within the heart of the golden orb suspended in a sea of aquamarine.

Rhythmic chants echoed into infinity, flowed and then swelled, encapsulating the beauty of a moment captured briefly. The Order lived for the recounting of a song conveyed by the Eternal Parent, one to teach their children the ways of Love and Beauty, but not of the material plane. They had transcended such things in the pursuit of a higher philosophy. Their flesh and blood carried the history of the people, for this is how the stories of the tribes were saved for future generations. For this is how the ancient song was taught and preserved.

The sacred rite performed at sunrise was steeped in mystic lore, one that enjoyed an honourable and long-lived lineage. It was said that the harmonics of such a song were capable of creation and destruction; being the key to unlocking doors long-held forbidden to all except those who had passed severe tests. One such individual now stood on the emerald-green grass.

He stood looking at the fingers of gold, peach and yellow unfurl and spread across the skies in a deeply intimate embrace. This moment of unending peace gave solace to his soul, for a brief time he found himself before the Veil shielding the Holy of Holies, the inner sanctum in which resided the Eternal Parent. The One was neither male nor female but an amalgam of something more.

The vision was momentary, but sufficient to precipitate a transformation that could not be undone. As the Sun awakened, so did the song within the temple of his heart. It unfurled like the petals of a rare flower glimpsed for the first time, a sight worthy of celebration. The man swayed with the intensity of emotion flooding through him. These are the experiences of the mystic journey, the culmination of which is, transcendence of the earthly plane. It is a lonely journey, for the seeker on these paths is a solitary figure, becoming untouched by worldly matters as time progresses.

His voice trembled in the throat, deepening in richness and melody. The chant began, one performed in every temple since civilisation emerged and humanity laid its soul at the feet of supernatural forces. Arms were raised in adoration and eyes closed in ecstasy. A melody fell from his lips, each note moving sinuously towards the Veil before the Sanctum. Then, silence reigned, deafening in its loudness. The light pulsed and swelled in time with the song. It was the heartbeat of the Universe, raw and true in substance. This was the pinnacle of life as his people knew it. The Light within responded in joy to the Light without. Atom by atom he dissolved in the song, revelled in its embrace and words of comfort. “I am Ready” were his last words. The Ancient Song had been performed and existence for his world guaranteed until the next cycle.

Bittersweet Kiss

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geralt, Pixabay

 

Two halves of a paradox, tantalisingly out of reach.

Yearning, emboldened glances thrown across the divide.

Fire in the belly, serpent rising to the heavens, scales falling from their eyes.

Her fingers touch his face, barely graze cheek and lips.

His fingers brush a silk waterfall, bury themselves within her hair.

Their dance is one eternal, between Dark and Light, between Yin and Yang, between Chaos and Balance.

Who can say what way the dagger will fall, how deep it will cut is yet to be revealed.

They stand on opposite sides of the gulf dividing the possible and impossible.

Is this what they call Life?

The blood pulses his veins, calls to his memories, of what was and could be again.

She pauses, urges a brief moment of caution, lest the world is set alight in flames all consuming.

How bittersweet their kiss is, how Love brands its name on their hearts.

Is this either real, or a memory carved on pillars deep within temples buried, sand blasted and melancholy?

Two halves of a paradox, tantalisingly out of reach.

Yearning, emboldened glances thrown across the divide.

Fire in the belly, serpent rising to the heavens, scales falling from their eyes.

How bittersweet their kiss is, how Love brands its name on their hearts.

 

Inescapable

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Engin_Akyurt, Pixabay

The Archivist picked up the book gingerly, it held the histories of all their kind, warriors who faced the horrors of the Abyss and more. He wrote the beginning and end of their task, of vanquishing fear in all its forms, of their conquests and failures. Hers was the most tragic, for she faced Love and lost herself in its embrace. Shadow and Light met, merged to become something else. They held the balance between Chaos and Order, between Becoming and Unbecoming. He gazed at the words, marvelled at his sorrow, it was done and could not be undone. It was an inescapable act:

The stars fall around them, lighting paths that lie receptive as shadows rise from within towers of silence.

Love lies spent on a bed of petals, as breath issues from lips that have tasted honey. Tasted other forbidden wine, tinged with iron, scarlet and burgeoning with life everlasting.

This path was inescapable, foretold in cryptic language, and hinted at in signs and symbols. Both play their role, of lovers unrequited, of assassins masquerading.

Hunger floods his veins, inflames at her scent, redolent of amber, cinnabar and damask rose. What price love? Worthy of sacrifice, revelation and surrender? She feigns languor, whispers words torrid.

The stars gaze impassively, gaze at futures possible, will the bait be taken? Will the dread beast succumb? They urge her caution, and she acquiesces.

Soft are his killer eyes, the fires of passion rekindled. Is she his lost love, snatched away in times long past? Pliant is his gaze, inviting yet more seduction.

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kalhh, Pixabay

Her heart hardens, steps back from precipice approaching. There is only eternal darkness and pain unending, if she falls, if she takes his bait.

Star fire floods her gaze, so begins the conflagration. She offers release, urges unbinding. Vampyr, his name is steeped in nightmare and longing. A dream risen from ashes of stars long vanished. He is one Fallen, from Darkness ascended, She is one Fallen, from Light descended.

Which life is worth ending? Which life is worth saving? Can Love spare bleak devastation?

Hunger floods her veins, inflames at his scent, redolent of Cedar, Hellebore and Myrrh. What price love? Worthy of sacrifice, revelation and surrender? She feigns languor, whispers words torrid.

This path was inescapable, foretold in cryptic language, and hinted at in signs and symbols. Both play their role, of lovers unrequited, of assassins masquerading.

Engin_Akyurt, Pixabay

Whispers of the Heart: Is This Love?

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an_photos, Pixabay

Seraph’s fall into manifestation continues as does my journey with him. He, Amunet and Anubis form an important triad of universal forces. I place my feet in their footsteps, see through their eyes and feel the heartbeat within their chests. Amunet and Seraph were birthed into existence as a result of flash fiction challenges and have remained with me through various adventures. Anubis has always been with me. Their journeys are part of a greater project, this much I can see. This blog was started initially to record my musings about life and the Universe, as well as to generate ideas for bigger projects. I had no idea where it would either go or whether it would fizzle out after a while.

It’s becoming apparent to me that the main blog is coalescing into a few threads that form the matrix of a bigger web; one stretching into infinity. That’s how it feels. The search for meaning in an endless Universe can appear overwhelming, sometimes we touch sparks of star light that have a story to tell. All we can do is listen and record their tales.

On this occasion one such spark, named Seraph for convenience, has descended into human form for reasons that will become clearer further down the path. An angelic being, consisting of pure energy finds themselves inhabiting flesh and bone. What a dilemma! It’s not an easy state of being, force has been poured into a form and experiencing all its attendant problems. Imagine eons of feeling unfamiliar emotions and physical sensations. They’ve changed gender throughout many lifetimes. In this incarnation Seraph is female and this short excerpt shows her trying to cope with the realities of love and loss, bittersweet twin poles of human existence. Seraph turns to Amunet for solace. I’m not sure whether I’ve captured the true essence of this experience, but here goes:

Engin_Akyurt, Pixabay

Seraph:

Their life force pulses, ebbs and flows, finds your innermost places, whispers sweetly of worldly things, promises heaven. He touched my face with the gentlest of fingers, traced my lips in adoration, and looked at me with eyes brimming with light. I touched his heart, watched it take breath after breath, heard its whispers of longing, it called my name and I answered. Is this love Amunet? Arms held me within a such a grip, as if I was a treasure beyond compare. What could I do but respond and bury my face in his neck, draw in his scent, kiss his jaw. Skin to skin we lay on the grass, the stars being witness to entwining, heart to heart, soul to soul. I was lost, truly lost in these moments of love, of shared joy at being alive. My tears flowed, tasted of the Great Ocean of Life. Is this love Amunet?

Amunet:

My dear, dear Seraph, I can feel such pain in your words. Yes, it is love and much more. This is an integral part of their existence, of being human. It can bring with it utterly sublime experiences, filled with both tears and laughter. Let your sorrow bring healing, let it go my friend. You’ve been witness to eons upon eons of life cycles, seen the natural order of things, take the essence of such an experience and treasure it.

Seraph:

Yes, such has been my experience, never being drawn into the minutiae of life. Taking such sights and offering them to the Greater Consciousness. As for now, it was my choice to see their world. Their lives are played out on a stage filled with regrets, yearnings, greed, hatred, joy and love. Many wander the long road in search of meaning, in search of themselves. He came to me naked of pretence, filled my life with laughter, and enriched my knowledge of this unfamiliar world. I find it difficult to seek the words to describe how I truly feel at his loss. He became diminished, life essence bleeding away over time. Then one day, his heart no longer spoke to me, it whispered a song of departure. I listened, urged it to live. He went, left me. This is the sword hanging over all that are made of mortality. I know that, but it’s hard to accept.

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pixel2013, Pixabay

Amunet:

(Gently cradles Seraph in her arms and rocks her).

That’s it, let the tears flow. Capture these moments as memories frozen in time and space and place them in the Vaults of Remembrance my dear, dear Seraph. They will give you solace when the time comes to return to the stars, love is worth its weight in gold, forever incorruptible, remember that.

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rawpixel, Pixabay

 

Amore – Twittering Tale #62 – 12 December 2017

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Image: Photo from the Commons at Pixabay

Kat Myrman’s photo for this week’s Twittering Tale challenge gave me pause for thought. How so? The lure of messages in bottles is quite seductive and rather poignant reminders of human need. We enclose our notes in carriages of glass, urging the ocean to seek out safe harbours. This bottle is carrying a longing of a different need, desire and love, tinged with saltiness and expectation, loss even.  Who is the unknown author of this love letter?

Dear love, feel my heartbeat
Brush your fingers across my lips
Whisper words of unbridled love
Come to me bare of all fear and insecurity
Feel my heartbeat
For I would walk across the oceans
To find you and only you
I speak your name, will you answer me?
I am your Soul, I am your Heart.

(279 characters)

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Tread Softly Dear Love

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Image: Pixabay

This was a strange one to write. I love the sea and feel its pull strongly, it calls bringing voices of the past and something yet to come. On this occasion it brought with it a tale of something and someone lost. A mariner who lost his life due to treachery and seeking revenge on the perpetrators. Revenge is a toxin that can remain even beyond death if we choose to accept  its embrace. This lost soul yearns for his former love, haunting her steps in the waking world and within her dreams. He also haunts the living, filled with a raging hatred.

Such is the strength of the mariner’s ire that the gods are compelled to deal with him. One such divine being is enlisted to calm the storm within this soul and release him from this purgatory. This isn’t a poem. I listened to my feelings and tried to translate them into a narrative that had elements of a song. I like the sound of words and the images they create:

Tread softly dear love,
Lest you crush the rose so avidly sought.
How so you question, this way I answer, dampen your ardour.
How your eyes of Autumn fire seek fulfilment, entreat passion,

This is not to be, she walks the lonely shore,

Carrying memories of times past, love that is past.

Leave her be, heal she must.

The rose blooms still upon her cheek, the heart still beats within her breast.

Tread softly dear love,

Lest you crush the rose so avidly sought.

 

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Image: Pixabay

Deep, deep I take us,
Through Earth and rivers of Fire,
Into depthless Oceans, forgotten Realms.

Soft are your words, hard is my Response.
Human man, how you drown in bitter waters, endless tears.
Speak to me of visions loving,
Of echoes of distant trysts,
Not of bloodied revenge, such things are gone and should not be called.

Retribution shall come but not by your hand.

It is not your task, for that is for the gods.

 

Ancient Mariner, why seek revenge on the living?

Your heart blazes with unnatural fire, quench it you must.
Our people call to us, many are their prayers,
Seeking release from the darkness that you bring.
Desist! Return to your watery grave in Poseidon’s realm.
Why become the very thing that seeks you out?

Lift yourself from these sands,
No presence of your former self shall you leave.
Gone is he, into depthless Oceans, forgotten Realms.

No graveyard dust shall you have but pearls of shining.

 

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Image: Pixabay

Tread softly dear love, your time is passing,

Dry your tears lest the depthless Oceans embrace the land.

Hear the song of the birds and the crashing waves upon the shore.

Give thanks for what you had, give thanks for what you shall have.

The Fates have decreed and so it must be, why seek hubris even beyond death?

Embrace the wine dark sea, taste its lips for evermore.

 

Tread softly dear love, your time is passing.

Come, join me into depthless Oceans, forgotten Realms,
In shining halls and forests of green.
Embrace the wine dark sea, taste its lips for evermore.
Tread softly dear love, come into my arms, your time is only beginning.

A Fleeting Glance

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Image: Pixabay

The spectre of a creature inhabiting the dark places of our subconscious emerges into consciousness once more. It’s been a while since I visited this landscape, the last time was in Ancient Bloodline – Moonlit # writephoto. Love, although a dysfunctional and destructive one, was the basis of that story. How could it be otherwise when it involves the Lady of the Bright Red Linen (one epithet of the goddess Sekhmet) and demons such as vampires. The ending was not a happy one. Why should it be?

The memory of that tale and an old project prompts me to weave another story involving yearning and love. My interest lies in exploring the depths of this creature’s psyche and also ours. Whether I succeed remains to be seen. Alas my protagonist doesn’t fare well much like the one in “Ancient Bloodline”. Crimson kisses and exquisitely painful emotions lead only to oblivion. My general of armies of darkness and blood has followed his ancient Egyptian priestess through centuries of search. Often glimpsing her but not quite able to touch, until now. Such an obsession is his undoing. Continue reading

Orpheus Ascended: Spirit of Memory

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Image: Pixabay

Deep in thought is the green eyed god, brow furrowed and eyes distant. Tormented by past, present and future. Orpheus knows not what path to follow, what choices to make. A decision must be made, his duty, not mine. He called us but denial stares back at us. How we delude ourselves when fate does not comply with our deepest most treasured desire. The same pattern, again and again. His heart still bleeds, still hurts, but wallowing in the swamp of misery and grief serves none. Eurydice is beyond our reach, descended into regions distant and unknowable. She has gained gnosis of a kind that the living cannot, should not be privy to until ready. My sisters and I are Physical Being, Soul and Spirit. The Trinity are we of your Soul oh humanity. The hidden Essence of your very existence. Continue reading

Sing to Me of Yearning and Loss: Spirit of Love

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Image: Pixabay

 “Sing to me of yearning and loss. Bring my heart to life. Let me feel the passion of her kiss and agony of her death” he commands. Yet, does he want to be reminded of his loss?

The musicians stare at the archaic god, one whose voice and musicianship have bowed even the heads of the infernal deities in Hades. Once his eyes bore the light of stars but now are touched with deep shadows that tell of ordeal and tribulation. Despite the kiss of deep sorrow he still bears an unearthly beauty. Mighty king of Thrace, blessed with gifts beyond measure to calm even the mightiest storm. How can they refuse such an honour? They are no strangers to the Orphic Mysteries and it is no accident great Orpheus has come upon this place. Continue reading