Lemuria

3.2.16 Liberating White Worldbridger Wavespell, White Castle

Esme got up to disembark from the plane. She and Bob embraced in a long hug; he was travelling onward to a different destination. They had exchanged contact information before the plane had landed and she knew their paths would cross again. After one last squeeze they parted and said goodbye. Esme walked down the corridor between seats and was happy to see Estes waiting for her at the other side of the gate. He saw her and smiled, waving her over.

“Great flight eh Esme! I slept the whole time, look out Lemuria, here we come!” Estes announced jauntily.

Esme giggled and asked, “Where to senor?” receiving a wink in response.

They left the airport and Estes waved to a tall, dark haired man in a blue shirt and cut off jeans standing beside a beat up forest green truck covered in mud. The tailgate was tied on with rope, one side mirror was missing, and the one on the passenger side was crooked and faced the ground. It was missing a window and bore paw prints in the mud on the hood.

“Ola Sky, good to see you brother,” Estes and the man embraced in a hearty hug, “This is Esme, Esme this is my longtime friend Night Sky.”

Night Sky inclined his head at Esme, saying, “Please, call me Sky.”

“That’s right, I forgot, only Willow calls you Night Sky, that too when she’s mad at you!” Estes slapped Sky on the back and chortled.

Esme and Estes climbed into the back of the pickup truck; the cab was loaded with tool bags, boxes, a chainsaw, a handsaw, axes, and cartons. Sky started up the truck and they zoomed out of the airport at great speed. He drove at such speed that everything was a blur and it wasn’t long before they were racing between an aquamarine river and a golden meadow. There were mountains in the distance and it wasn’t long before the truck turned, tires squealing, and they began climbing the mountain. The truck zoomed around curves, gaining height as they spiraled.

Up the twisty turny mountain they wound at breakneck speed. The back of the truck bumped and bounced and Esme held onto the sides to keep from falling out. The truck hugged the curves and she caught glimpses of aquamarine water rushing white over rocks way down below. Sunlight filtered through the trees and leaves hanging over the road; she ducked to keep from being slapped by a low branch as the truck careened on up higher and higher until it suddenly turned right onto a hidden dirt road. There was a cloud of dust behind them and she could hear the crunch of gravel as it scattered under the tires, which skidded around curves screeching to a halt in front of a cheerful house where a young boy came running out to greet them.

Estes hopped over the tailgate and gave Esme a hand down.

“Estes! I didn’t know you were coming!” The boy threw himself at Estes in a joyful hug that knocked Estes to the ground. The two rolled about wrestling for a while, then the boy noticed Esme standing there and raised an eyebrow. She smiled at him, as he nudged Esme asking under his breath, “Got a girlfriend Estes?”

Estes rolled his eyes and stood up. “Esme, meet Whispering Wind, he’s mighty loud for a whisperer eh?”

The boy, he must have been eleven or twelve grinned cheerfully and stuck his hand out saying, “Hi Esme, nice to meet you, come on in, I’m sure Mom will be thrilled to meet you,” as he winked at Estes.

Sky had already disappeared, and Esme followed Estes and Whispering Wind into the house. She was immediately struck by the fragrance of fresh bread, accompanied by a crackling singing sound. Ah, she recognized the noise instantly; it had been a while since she’d heard the breadsong. She smiled with delight. She could hear Estes and Whispering Wind talking and a woman’s voice joined theirs in the next room. It was an airy voice yet it carried a deep timbre.

“Esme, come, meet Willow,” Estes appeared in the doorway and practically dragged her by the hand to where a smooth skinned, dark haired cherubic young woman stood clad in purple and green flowing skirts dusted with flour and a cream blouse, turquoise dangling from her ears. Esme’s liked her immediately; the woman exuded warmth.

“Willow,” Estes announced, “Meet my very good friend Esme, isn’t she a treat?”

“Delicious,” said Willow, smiling at Esme with twinkling eyes. She floated toward her, enveloping Esme in a welcoming hug. Esme felt a jolt of electricity run up and down her spine and the next thing she knew she was experiencing another vision.

Willow was furious. This was really too much, their mail had been stolen three times already, and as if that wasn’t enough she had redirected all their mail to the post office for pick up. Somehow a box of books had arrived at their mailbox and the mail thief had slashed it open, presumably to examine the contents, and finding them unworthy had scattered the books all around the ground! And now they had taken the street sign, leaving a note on the pole that said, “If I can’t have your mail, then neither can you.” What in the heck?! Oh Willow was steaming mad as she walked around toward the grove of trees. As she approached the circle she saw Felicity Fox slink out of the underbrush. Felicity sat down on her haunches and curled her bushy tail around her, licking her lips with anticipation.

“Oh Willow dear, you seem to be in quite a tizzy, whatever has happened? Do tell.”

Willow narrated the events to Felicity, who said, “Tsk tsk! This person really should be taught a lesson Willow dear!”

“Yes, I agree Felicity, but what in the world am I to do? We put up a camera to see who it is and that was left behind broken! This is beyond aggravating.”

“Ah, my dear Willow, you are too sweet. To catch a thief you need bait, and what better bait than setting out an attractive parcel with one of those vicious bear traps set and ready inside!” Felicity sneered and carried on, “Yes, imagine a thief with a missing hand! And let the fool try explaining that at the emergency room of a hospital when they show up with their hand in somebody else’s mail! Heeheee!”

Felicity Fox was most pleased and laughed heartily at her excellent idea. Willow was amazed at Felicity’s tenacious suggestion and she stood slightly stunned by the imagery unfolding in her imagination.

“Well it would serve the thief right!” She stated roundly, “Though I’m not entirely comfortable severing somebody else’s hand, after all what if their vein got sliced and they bled to death?”

“Weakness,” Felicity practically spat at her, “There is no room for weakness in justice being served I say, if you don’t have the stomach for it Willow dear then you are a coward!”

Willow frowned. She was no coward yet Felicity Fox’s idea of justice, cunning as it was, didn’t feel quite right to her. She sighed, and then stretched out toward the sky turning the thought over in her mind.

“Well,” purred a low throaty voice, “If it isn’t Felicity Fox doling out sage advice as usual.”

Leona, a sleek tawny lioness, came prowling out of the woods, her slanted green eyes glistening wickedly. Felicity Fox snarled at the mountain lion.

“Humph, what would you know about such things Leona,” she stated stiffly, “You’re all stalk and lunge in fro the kill, this kind of delicacy might be too subtle for you.”

Leona smiled, revealing sharp sword like teeth, saying with pride, “Felicity, a clean kill is what I aim for, and a clean kill is what I deliver.”

Felicity turned to Willow, “Well, my dear if you don’t want to get your hands all dirty you could just use a bit of poison instead, humph! I’ll leave you two, I have other important matters to attend to now, remember my dear, there’s no shamein employing cunning to your advantage; it’s there to be used, to be used! There’s a time for everything so don’t be weak! Strike while the iron is hot I always say!”

“Felicity, thank you for your advice,” said Willow sincerely, “I do appreciate it, and will certainly consider your wisdom before acting.”

Leona was mimicking Felicity when Willow turned to her.

“Yes, I heard the entire conversation,” she said baldly to Willow stretching out on the ground and rolled onto her back, arching it. Willow sat beside her and scratched her head and neck absently.

“You know, I have a thought Leona, would you be my eyes for a little?”

Leona turned onto her belly and looked into Willow’s eyes. “Hmm, I see, yes, I’ll be your eyes,” she agreed.

Willow continued rubbing the lioness’s head and neck, shutting her own eyes. The sunlight was pouring over them both, radiating warmth in a circle around them. When Willow opened her eyes, she was at the mailbox, picking up the smell of the mail thief, then she was off, prowling through the underbrush, silent and deadly; Leona was hunting. Her ears were pricked, shoulders haunched, as she slunk through the woods, leaping over rocky outcroppings and climbing trees from where she scanned and sniffed before carrying on. There. She’d found her mark. It bore the distinct scent of the mail thief.

Looking in a window, Willow caught glimpses of a person who was in the throes of a fit of some kind. They were throwing things at the walls, shouting and screaming at another unseen person, then she saw a bottle opened and the mail thief chugged it down, throwing the empty beer bottle out the window. There was a heap of broken glass and beer cans piled up there. This was the picture of dissoluteness. More ranting and raving sounds ensued; the mail thief stepped out the door, slamming it loudly behind where it was already loose on the hinges. Willow could smell this person’s emotional instability, desperation, anger, and despair rolling out on the air. It wafted and stunk. She could see the unhappy thoughts swirling around, tossed this way and that directionless yet loose, wild, and free. She had seen what she needed to see.

Willow opened her eyes and looked into Leona’s.

“Thank you my friend,” she said simply, “I know what to do now.”

Leona nodded at Willow, and blinked as she rolled over and went to sleep in the sunshine.

Willow rose and approached the grove of trees now. There were four large trees in the grove that formed a circle around a clearing. She stood in the center of the circle after she’d greeted each tree individually. Here she shut her eyes and seemed to be waiting for something.

After a while she nodded and went walking into the woods to the North of the grove. It was dark and damp. Her eyes scanned the ground as she walked. There. She found what she was looking for. It was a stump of wood, like a mace; instead of spikes on the end it had what looked like turkey tail mushrooms circling the end, except they were not turkey tails, Willow could tell from the gills underneath. It was exactly what she needed. She picked it up and gave thanks.

She walked across to the South of the grove. Here under a bush facing the sun she saw a delicately decorated weathered slab of cherry wood, left there long ago. It was covered with elegant blue, grey, cream, crazy lace agate looking turkey tails, their undersides white and dotted with miniscule spores. She picked two pieces and gave thanks.

She entered the woods to the West of the grove. It felt cool and clear here. The creek gurgled along happily, murmuring soothing bubbling songs. Willow stood on the bank and looking down she saw a wet branch in the creek that had a dancing light green hairy fairy like entity stretching about where the water rippled over and moved it. Usnea. She bent down and plucked it off the branch and gave thanks.

She walked to the East. The ground was covered with leaves and twigs. Two Hickory shells caught her eye. She bent down and picked them up, giving thanks.

She moved into the center of the circle again. From in her pocket she retrieved a bone. She placed it like a spoke in the ground. Then she carefully placed Turkey Tails, Usnea, and Hickory shells around the bone. She grounded herself and lifted the club toward the sky. She held the image of the mail thief in her mind’s eye as she began chanting. She raised her arms and lowered her head and began to turn, chanting louder. She felt a slight breeze, the trees began to rustle and sway. The Windsong came rushing through the grove, swirling around the circle. Now Willow raised her head and sang a song of healing, a song of abundance, a song of happiness, a song of fruitfulness, a song of mending for the mail thief to be joined where joining was needed, to be made whole, to be of use and service in hand, in ways that were satisfying and emotionally fulfilling to the mail thief. She spun around with the club waving circles in the air with it, gobbling like a turkey, hooting like an owl into the roaring Windsong, then she picked up the bone from the ground and jabbed in the direction of the mail thief and sent forth purposefully the flesh and meat of her work. The wind gusted in the direction she had jabbed, carrying the song and scattering and seeding it for the mail thief. When it wad done it died down and dissipated; it was silent in the woods. Willow shut her eyes and offered smoke. She gave thanks and closed the circle. Leona woke up where she was napping and stretched languidly. She nodded her head with approval at Willow then in one motion leaped up and disappeared in the trees. Willow returned home.

The next day Night Sky returned with a fresh deer carcass he had found on the roadside. Willow butchered it and took it to the circle as an offering for Leona. She gave thanks. Time sped by rapidly and one day Whispering Wind came bursting in the door.

“Mom, you won’t believe it, the road sign’s back up!” he yelled.

“Hmm,” she said, “May have been the roadwork people?”

Then gifts began appearing. One day they came home and their driveway had fresh gravel on it. Another time they came home and there was a cords worth of firewood piled up waiting for them. Next it was logs laid out in the woods by the creek, plugged with mushroom spawn. Sometimes they’d find packages at the repaired mailbox. Once it was a copper still exactly like the one that had been stolen so long ago, another time it was tanned, cured and stretched deer hide and sinew, a handmade drum and mallet, a singing bowl, a fallen over tree sawed and carved, a garden gate where the old one was falling off, weeded flower beds, heaped up manure piles; this went on and on and on in surprising and beautiful ways that made Willow, Night Sky, and Whispering Wind marvel and wonder happily . . .. .

Esme blinked and saw Willow was looking at her curiously where they stood holding each other’s hands like longtime sisters. She wondered briefly what Willow may have seen, then shrugged and gave her a heartfelt beam, which was returned in good measure as Willow said, “Welcome to Lemuria Esme! Come. Let us eat bread together.”

3.29.16 Wise Yellow Human Wavespell, White Castle

Esme and Estes set out to explore the Lemurian landscape early one morning. They’d poured over maps and marked pages with circled spots indicating areas of interest to them. Whispering Wind had advised them on the numerous places he felt they’d enjoy and absolutely must go visit:: even tucked away handwritten instructions in the picnic basket Willow had given them as they climbed into the truck with Night Sky and headed out toward Tintaglu, City of Light. As they descended from the mountain, they could see it rising from the circular bowl ringed by water, they could see the four bridges over the river that led into the city. In the morning glow the buildings, created from glass and clear quartz, were dazzling! Rainbows streaked from their triangular tops and landed on each bridge in perfect accord. Night Sky dropped them off by Wonaffu, the West Bridge, waved goodbye and continued on his way.

Esme and Estes stood and absorbed their surroundings with pleasure.

“Oh Estes! This is simply lovely!” Esme exclaimed from where she was standing inside the rainbow. She spun around and clapped her hands, completely delighted.

Estes chuckled, offering her his arm, “She’s something alright, old Tintaglu! Shall we?”

Esme shook her head; she was enjoying swinging her arms and turning while she walked. She noticed right away how clean everything was, the streets, vehicles, buildings, air, water, sparkling and gleaming! The people she saw had a tranquil feeling to them, dressed in beiges, creams, tans, greys, neutral tones; the children were peaceful with smiling plump cheeks, twinkling eyes, quiet giggles. The rainbow lit them up as they crossed the bridge, and Esme was taken completely by surprise when someone grabbed her hand and pulled her aside.

“You, you no go there,” the old crone hissed, slanty black eyes glowing in her alabaster smooth, unlined face, “Tintaglu, you, too much, like riding horse on slippery rock side snake startles horse break neck, not time for you, Tintaglu, you go there, Nuffseen, North Bridge, find Won-Chen-Too, he know you, he waiting for you, give to him this from Setmet.”

Setmet gave Esme a bundle, turned her around, and said, “Go now, hurry hurry, no make slow shuffle dancing ooh ah, too much rainbow, too bright blinding, Won-Chen-Too waits!”

Esme began walking in the direction of Nuffseen, the North Bridge. She turned once and Setmet had vanished. Estes was beside her, she reached her hand out and linked arms with him.

“She reminds me of my mother,” she spoke after a few moments.

Estes nodded, then asked, “Any idea who Won-Chen-Too is?”

Esme shook her head no, “Have you noticed how the city is darker on this side Estes?”

“Hmm, she’s got her secrets she does, dark places just like any other, don’t let the dazzle razzle fool you Esme, there’s some parts of Tintaglu I wouldn’t go under the brightest of conditions unless I absolutely had to!”

They walked along until they got to Nuffseen. The rainbow spilled over the bridge spanning one side to the other in a stream of color. They leaned over the bridge’s edge, walled with etched quartz crystal that had rose quartz, citrine, rutilated quartz, smoky quartz, amethyst, and topaz inlaid all along the top. The aquamarine waters swirled by below, they could see fish in all colors swimming in the depths.

“Aha, there you are,” came a booming voice from behind them.

A tall man with shaggy strawberry blond hair down past his shoulders, twinkling green eyes set in a bronze face was striding toward them, his boots eating up the distance in long easy strides. He stuck a giant callused hand out.

“Won-Chen-Too, at your service, please call me Won,” he stated merrily, shaking each of their hands.

After they’d introduced themselves, Esme passed him the bundle she carried.

“Excellent, excellent, Setmet is true to her word as always, what a sweetheart!” Boomed Won, “Now where are you off to? Looking for something in particular? On a quest for knowledge, spirituality, self-awareness? Our beloved Tintaglu has something for everyone, nobody leaves here empty handed, this is her promise!”

Esme burst out laughing, “Actually we had no intentions other than to walkabout, maybe visit the Xavier Pod, the Singing Pools of Ercardium, and a few other places the boy we’re staying with says we must see.” Esme took out the sheet of paper folded in the shape of a heron from in the picnic basket. Won’s eyebrows rose when he saw the heron.

“My my, wherever did you get that?” he asked.

“Whispering Wind gave it to me, that’s his name, the boy’s,” Esme replied.

“Ah so, ah so! Friends of Night Sky and Willow’s are you, yes yes!” Won thundered nodding his head and shaking his shaggy mane vigorously, “What’s on Wind’s list, let me guess, Peripheral Arcanium, Gublitoo’s Baked Goods, Twig and Twine . . . ?”

Esme erupted in gales of laughter, “Why yes! I gather you know him well?”

“Hmm, he’s a good lad,” Won winked, then suddenly turned serious, “Listen I’ve been waiting for you, as Setmet assuredly revealed. I must pass on the art, the lore, the making and shaping before it is lost, my time is coming to a close this round. I had thought once that it would be Willow or Night Sky, but they have family, Wind is too young, there were others I met, Setmet sent, as did Nakabu and Neshmia, but all these came seeking, questing, searching. That is not the way of the one to whom I must pass the Chen to, you, you are the one.”

Esme gazed deep into his green eyes and saw past the twinkles, an orb of light shining fiercely. A flash emitted, a streak of lightening, and then Won transformed into an old man, wizened, face lined, leathery, his closed hand opened and in it a swirl of light spiraling continuously, ceaselessly. As she watched closer she saw it was coming out from inside his hand, he was pulling it from his eyes and bringing it out where it was joining with filaments of light all around them, strands reaching from the rainbow to her to Estes to the walls of the bridge, the waters, the gems, the mountains, the sky, the fish, and coming together as the helix she saw upon his palm. He was singing softly she realized, a bird screeched above and came to settle on his shoulders, it was a magnificent hawk. Won cupped his hands together, the hawk whistled into them.

Won stepped forward and asked, “Are you willing to be the bearer of light, to keep it in trust, in knowing, in love, to house it in your abode, and to share it with those who are worthy of what it is?”

“I am,” Esme said calmly.

Won leaned forward and cupped her eyes, saying, “In Spirit’s name, and only if the All Mighty wills it, I pass to this woman, Esme, the knowing of As Samee ul Basir, As Samee un Qareeb, As Samee ul Aleem , Ya Hafeez, Ya Haadi, Ya Maani, Ya Allah, be with her on her walk.”

Esme felt a breath like no other pour through her eyes and fill all of her being with itself as it merged and married, coursing into her heart in communion. When she opened her eyes tears were pouring out of them and Won was gone.

The hawk was circling above her head, calling clearly, “We are one, I fly now; an ally will come to you, keep your eyes and ears open and you will recognize the friend.”

She saw filaments of light extending from herself to the hawk, to Estes, to everything all at once and was momentarily blinded by the sight, then she blinked and adjusted her vision and the luminous strands ceased to blind her. She reached out and touched them and was delighted to feel them vibrate and respond!

She heard Won’s voice emanate from the strands, “Remember this::there are master’s a dime a dozen who will propose to teach you the art, the knowledge, amongst other things how to do kintsugi; but perceive how the bowl shaped from earth that has been lovingly sifted and screened and tended to, selected as clay for the bowl, mixed with clean water collected fresh from pure springs, shaped by attentive and attuned hands, rebatched the moment a slight flaw is felt by the senses, then thrown and shaped again and again, until at last a bowl is formed with no faults, then this is fired in a kiln constructed on the same principles with only the best of wood stoked to absolute righteous heat diligently fanned with clean pure living air then breathed upon by the maker, this may be the only bowl fired but this bowl will never have need of an art peddled a dime a dozen, and it is this bowl that when Man aspires to, strives to, achieves and lives by the principles that go into the making this way that in turn creates a beautiful world of purpose that is magnificent in all aspects, what is created in perfection needs no kintsugi to put it back together, it lives its purpose and transforms:::kintsugi is needed when man makes too much of too little instead of making too little to begin with, beware of the master’s who will teach you to break pot upon pot so you can learn how to put them back aright, be aware of those who would do damage to show you light!”

Esme and Estes spent the remainder of the day walking about the city, stopping in at the places Wind had indicated they ‘must’ go, and picnicking in the beautiful park beside the South Gate, Shakura, where the bridge was fully illuminated with brilliant orbs along the edges that reflected in the water at dusk. They met Night Sky at the East Bridge, Elysa, when the full moon was directly overhead in the sequined starry skies inky folds. Esme climbed into the truck and snuggled up next to Estes yawning sleepily, she’d had a marvelous day and felt full.

4.8.16 Passionate Red Serpent Wavespell, Blue Castle

Esme stood naked in the chilly evening under a crescent moon. Venus twinkled brightly above and lit the tub of steaming water that awaited her below. It was an enchanting sight: the stones surrounding the tub had been mostly covered with hardened clay, smoke was drifting out in plumes from the chimney, beneath which a carefully tended fire crackled and heated the water with the logs piled to one side. The scent of roses wafted up from where they’d soaked in the warming water, now perfuming the air with their released fragrance. She breathed deeply and let it fill her lungs and heart till she felt full; she could feel the scent move through her bloodstream when she began to tingle all over. Sighing with pleasure she stepped into the tub and immersed herself in its welcome embrace.

“Ah, this is wonderful!” She thought in the quiet of the night.

She leaned back and gazed up on stars sequinning the inky sky delicately, some glowed red, and others twinkled blue and white. It was a dazzling sight. She traced dragonflies and an enormous turtle, on one side a swan was winging and there was even a dog sitting on haunches gazing up at the crescent moon, an arrow pointing directly at it, drawn and ready to hit the mark with a rhythmic twang. She stirred the water with a hand and began to feel drowsy. The wood planks were comfortably hot under her body, keeping her from burning skin on the scorching enameled iron cauldron. She exhaled contentedly and scooched deeper under the water.

A hole opened from a trapdoor in the earth outside the tub and a tall, white haired woman climbed up in a pink fleece bathrobe and stretched.

“What a beautiful night!” she exclaimed loudly, “I do believe I’ll join you, don’t mind if I do myself!”

She disrobed and stirred up the fire, added a few logs, then climbed into the tub, sitting down with a thump and a splash that sent a spray of droplets and damp wrinkled rose petals all over Esme’s face. She wriggled about and laughed.

“Think I’ll be a mermaid tonight, watch out for my tail!” She giggled and flopped her long legs around in the water, sending waves up on the surface.

Esme watched her antics with a degree of awe. The woman was older than her mother; by the whiteness of her hair and the lines and undulations and crevices on her face and body, this Esme could tell, yet she was youthful as a child and twinkled as bright as the evening star!

“And you are Esme I’m told,” the woman announced, “I’m Sugar Plum, live over yonder; the tunnel’s a shortcut that Night Sky and Wind built for me . . . they said it would save me the trouble of walking over in the dark, old lady like me, might slip and fall you know, though I’ll let you in on a secret,” she leaned forward conspirationally and dropped her voice, “Thing is I spent four to six hours for the past thirty years perfecting walking around in the dark, blindfolded even, until I can find my way and see as clearly in dark or light, there’s no difference anymore, so it’s unlikely that I’d slip and fall eh, unless of course I wanted to or something outside myself got in the way, something unforeseen, hidden to any sight, do you see . . . not that I told them this, let them do their work, a labor of love it was, and why would I deny them that?!”

Then turning suddenly serious she continued, “There’s a lot of folks out there these days that’ll tell you things don’t happen for a reason, don’t believe them, everything happens for a reason though that doesn’t mean we know what all the reasons are nor does it discount any feelings we may have in response to events that come about, quite the contrary these responses often open doors to release what’s bubbling inside us, brings them to light, how we respond to these becomes how we participate in our unfolding destiny; all a matter of choice and destination! Educate yourself my dear, I see the Light you keep, learn, learn, learning is an ongoing process, every drop of wisdom and insight you gain, you’ll suddenly discover resets you to knowing less about what’s ahead, this universe is vast and holds all the answers to the quest, the question is are you pursuing them, what are you asking, how are you applying what you’ve learned to the unraveling of what is revealed? Nobody but yourself can answer these questions, nor in truth know what questions are the ones for your questing, as no body but yourself has walked the exact same path that you have, experienced the exact configuration of events that you have, stepped on or turned over the exact stones that you’ve found, indeed many are born on the same day under the same celestial conjunctions and oppositions, sextiles and trines, even in the same cities at the same exact hours, yet none but you hold the name of your naming true, nor have any other felt and sensed and rounded out in the same pattern what you have in the exactly aligned way as yourself, though many have walked the same path and may know what you know, each of you have come to it through your own doors.

Yes, all this combines to become part of the destination, then destiny, very much like this tub of iron concealed by enamel and covered in Earth, holding Water heated with Fire brought out of Wood, can’t see the flames in the wood but it’s there all the same isn’t it? Out here in the open Air, smell that forest fragrance; look there at Smoke billowing through the branches drifting higher and dispersing, elemental is it not? And the beauty of it is it’s explicit and obviously right under our noses, teaching much in the simplest of ways, here where we are in body immersed and submerged in it; now Wind, there’s a boy who absorbs it all, he’s the key to the story, indeed there’s a story spangled in the starriness of his eyes, every bit pure gold, the question isn’t one of purity, though that’s part of the recipe, but do you have clarity about your knowledge, do you Know what it is you keep, what it is your education has taught you? Can you act upon it, arrow nocked and ready to draw decisively when it’s time to do so? There’s a woman, Caroline Myss, Sagittarian Fiery to the core with a bit of Venus to her as well, she waves her hands like this and like that and turns talk into word, transforming thought unhesitatingly sending out arrows of transmutation, could be they’re unerring could be they err, that’s all upon the mark once they’re fired off, beheld by the beholder by virtue of what they themselves bring to the writing, the question isn’t about what’s written but what are you bringing with you . . . that’s what’ll inform your particular rendering of it, marking you with the marking you imbue, it’s about affinity and attraction in vibrations subtle yet practice six hours a day for thirty years and onward and you’ll see them blindfolded, do you ken? Now let’s drink to all that shall we!”

She climbed out of the tub and fetched a flask from a pocket in her pink robe and passed it to Esme, who took a slow savory swig of the cold, clear, sweet tasting fresh water gratefully. She thanked Sugar Plum and handed the flask back to her. Sugar Plum popped the stopper back in its place and put the flask back into the pocket, then she shook her hair and body out till she was dry and slipped into her robe. She stoked up the fire and put a few more logs in to burn.

“It’s been delightful bathing with you Esme, I’ll be going home now, and perhaps we’ll meet again! Enjoy the night and sweet dreaming.”

“Yes, thank you Sugar Plum, it’s been a great pleasure, I do hope we cross paths before I leave Lemuria.”

Sugar Plum smiled cheerfully and climbed back into the hole, shutting the trapdoor behind her as she disappeared from sight. Esme settled back and immersed her head in the tub, her hair streamed around her in waves, she submerged herself lower into the warm womb caressing her, and inhaling deeply, drawing the fragrance of roses within where it permeated and suffused her, she shut her eyes pondering all that the sparkling old woman had generously shared with her, sorting through what it meant to her; the stream of wyrds spilling and swirling around and inside her, rhythmically bathing her in stardust; churning until her lips moved and she sang her own song to the listening stars.

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