Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Fairy's Tale (A Parable)

There was a mist, teeming with the sparkled flakes that were the Essence of Faerie, and it shone around them all and rippled away gently as they moved, those Creatures of Grace, whose voices rang multi-layered, like chords in a madrigal; whose eyes both reflected and were composed of the glimmer that spun everywhere. Mother and Father hovered by the roof-door and smiled down.

"Be good, small ones."

Zeema and Zoarenth smiled the smiles that contained all of the the pure and innocent evil of their kind, their faces aswirl with pink and white meldings.

"And, Chenthah: no scary stories," they said to the young Fairy who would watch the younger ones for the night.

"I promise," Chenthah said, the sign hidden behind her back, her face's colors shifting between blue and pink.

When the roof-door was closed and the glow of the glowbug lamps took up the toil that the moonlight had done when it had been opened, the children fell into Chenthah's lap and cuddled close. Their skin soon matched the leaves that roofed the house: deep green.

"Tell us the story, Chenthah," they said. "Tell us the stories of the Stoneworld!"

Chenthah, knowing full well that she would tell it, demurred -- her green eyes narrow and her skin going to the color of a luminescent Caribbean night-wave. "I promised..."

"You made the sign," they said. "We saw it."

"You'll not sleep for fright," she said.

"We'll sleep. We promise. Mother and Father will be out dream-carrying until morning. Pleeeeease..."

"Alight," she said, placing them on the floor before her.

The children held hands and their faces went from a lime glow into the pale blue of concentration. Chenthah spoke. And they watched the colors changing in her skin, swirling and blending shimmeringly, like the vari-hued nebulae that they had explored many times with their parents. The caregiver spoke:

I've ridden the dragonfly out beyond the Borders and I have hidden in shadow and watched the doings of the People of the Imprisoned Feet. I have watched them steer their machines of metal. I have watched them smother the Earth below them with the false stone they lay and watched them walk upon it, never and ever touching it with their bound toes. I have watched them stretch for the sky with steel and with wishes, and I have seen what it is to have forgotten the Mother.

The children hugged each other.

There, in the world of false stone, they pretend to have all that they lost when they left the forests. There, the children walk through days in danger, because Men and Women have learned to see the end and to forget the space between it and their beginnings. There, they have begun to fear the joys of the body or they've chosen to pursue those joys in disregard of the wellness of the body. There, they imprison each other and they snuff out the lives of those who are different or who break the laws that they forge -- laws that wander away from the heart.

Last time I was there, I saw two people making love (their kids are not allowed to talk about this as you are) and their skin -- it remained a constant color!

The children made small, frightened sounds and hugged each other, closer. A feeling of emptiness crept into their bellies.

Last time I was there, I saw two people clasping hands, and one hand was brown and the other white, and the colors...they never changed!

The children giggled nervously and Zeema closed her eyes and buried her face in her brother's chest.

Last time I was there, I saw two friends talking over dinner, and, again, there were no shifting hues -- their faces; their hands; their arms -- no matter whether they laughed or whispered or spoke of frightening things, their skin -- it stayed pale pink or brown or whatever color it had been. THERE WAS NO PRISM SHIFTING! NO COLOR MELDING!

Zeema let out a small shriek and another nervous giggle. Zoarenth wished he had a big brother's chest in which to bury his face...

Last time I rode the dragonfly beyond the Border, I watched two of the People of the Imprisoned Feet swinging at each other in fury with large pieces of tree and with metal blades; I saw them pointing explosive sticks at one another -- sticks that threw stones that would stop the buzz of a human soul or break apart their bodies -- in anger; in a rage like that of the contending sea and wind. And as they did this; as they roared in violence at one another, their changed. It... finally...changed.

The children leaned forward. Chenthah leaned forward, her face-color shifting from blue, to purple, to orange. The children's faces drained to the palest yellow.

"What ...color," Zoarenth whispered, barely able to speak for fear. The air seemed to expand and contract around them and then come to a pinpoint which floated between their eyes.


The children screamed and fell into a heap with their caregiver. They laughed and laughed out of fear and then they spoke of other things until sleep dusted them into Otherworld.

When  the roof-door opened and the moonlight set the essence of their world glimmering again, Mother and Father floated down and looked upon the three beloveds, sleeping, but Mother saw it first: a shiver that was the hint of a dream that was a nightmare of colors that shifted only in the throes of anger and hate.

Mother grimaced at the sleeping caregiver, who woke, and whose face drained from a deep blue to the color of Autumn sunrise.