Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Previously in Billington's Cove, then presently in Billington's Cove, Shrines of Memory

The most recent post from Billington's Cove, followed by the new post.


Saturday, April 11, 2015

Robert recalls bits of the dance, not quite sure of his reality

Thank you, Sizzler, for cheesy toast triangles.

Robert couldn't remember the author who had said of growing older that he felt like a young man who had something wrong with him.  The name would come to him before lunch.  "Or so help me," he muttered.

Another morning of golden cheesy-toast benevolence beaming down.  Limbs that sang, "Younger Than Springtime," with an off-stage whisper of, "Older than dust."  Pent-up anticipation could make joints twinge, nerves jump, muscles ache.  So could dancing until the sun was due, eating seven kinds of dessert after midnight and what felt like four hours of dreams for which one could not swear to being either asleep or awake.   The thought that he had conquered lucid dreaming gave him a sense of accomplishment.  Perhaps conquered was too strong a word,   At best he had stepped from one reality into another and back again.  Not quite enough to add to his CV but not nothing.  He began to noodle with suppositions about a job that held lucid dreaming high on its requirements list.

But I digress, he told himself.  The dance.  Yes, the dance.  And Gloria.  Would she fall back into his arms when he reached the kitchen,  missing his closeness as much as he missed hers?  Would they waltz through the tearoom, delighting themselves, possibly amusing others, or would they experience that initial distance that says, "You imagined the whole thing," until each remembered they had not, in fact, imagined any of the good parts and they were all good parts.

He didn't need to decide it right that moment but Robert was considering never again washing the shirt he'd worn, never wanting to lose the scent of her, of sugar and strawberries and a summer night.  It had its own fragrance, that he knew, and feared he could never catch it again if he washed it away.  Then he reminded himself that fairy magic, while seeming fragile and fleeting, was really the kudzu vine that wove lives together.  Meanwhile, the shirt in question could make friends with other denizens of the laundry basket.  Or perhaps he would just fold it and slide it under his pillow.  I am twelve years old, he thought. Lucky me.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015


The taste of sweetness that comes from wishes fulfilled teased Gloria awake.  Could she capture just that flavor in one of her pastries?  Would a bite through the glazed and buttery crust to the ripe, sugared peaches inside let anyone else know they were savoring love, quiet and mature, quiet and adolescent, silly and dizzying and yes, very quiet?  Gloria knew that she, her own shrine of memory, had grown in a way she could not yet calculate.  Could the vault hold any more? she questioned.

As the years and their losses increased, Gloria found the way to save herself from sliding into perpetual grief was to understand one of her life's purposes, that of being the trusted repository for the good, all the good, with which she had been showered.  It was not to ignore or deny sadness or worse, but to recognize that within the naches and tsoris of an earthly existence, elevating joy was an act of faith.  So much beauty, love and wonder had been entrusted to her, she felt at times they were children whom relatives had left in her care before they departed for other realms.  She only knew to kiss them endlessly, her arms always tight around them, to let go would be to lose them.  She was the steward, the trustee.  Hers was the task of bringing them back and back again into the light of knowing, acknowledging, appreciating so they might not fade.
What she loved, had always loved, would not leave her when held like a savings bond, accruing value.  All that was asked of her, assigned to her, was to keep safe what was most precious, whether or not it had ceased to exist outside her remembering.  She held with the view, not quite understood in a scientific way, that all time existed simultaneously and what had once been still remained.  It almost suggested the existence of ghosts, not identifiable forms yet still of substance.  Nor was their purpose to torment but to keep her awake to the fact of them.  They asked for her friendship, her understanding, her most potent healing arts.   Gloria practiced alchemy in multiple forms, her cooking which was pure transformation and her soul as safe haven for what seemed gone but was not.

The dance, now residing in the past tense, took its place among all that shone most brightly in endless yesterdays.  It was too soon to know if it was a mayfly or caterpillar in the process of becoming.

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