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THE LIGHT SOCIETY

by Brent Paul Pearson

 

CHAPTER 2: What is the Gift

 

"What is the gift?" asked the man in red.

"The crystal lens will teach you to think of the passing, not the past itself," said Black. "For years and years across the desert sand the butcher of often slipped under the ever-eclipsing universe," said Black as he handed the crystal to the man wearing green.

"We have all gone to lie with the ghost in the highlands," said Green just before putting the crystal lens to his eye. He then turned his face to the light to catch the spiraling illuminations.

"And we have all gone to swim in the black sea beyond the sun," said Violet.

"Yes, Violet. It is all only a matter of distance traveled. However, in your desire to move faster you might find first the great nature of hunger," said Black.

"Who's behind such hunger?" asked the man in indigo from his seat on the floor.

"Amidst heaps of fruits and heavy robes there stands a gardener among his plants quietly ready to swallow all," said Orange.

The woman in blue stood up and said, "I will lay one day, fireside near the outcast of light, astride near the hip of the earth, a scarecrow amidst a crowd of wings."

"Then do you know that black backed song bird who sits alone near the stone trees, near the honey milk, so still in her rarest gloom?" asked Black. "Blue, would you show me your wound that makes the great waking tide, into which the lonely often descend, through the streaming masses of black smoke?"

"Black, some nights, asleep in my bed I've seen a deep Indian red where, save for the candle and chair the table is bare," said the woman in blue.

"The sun never sets in this room but is wound about the sky. Remove your blue gowned and we shall run naked across the sloping beach, howling across the sloping beach," said Black to Blue.

Blue stood up removing her robe and said to Black, "The songbird hunts in the rainbow forest, while the wild sparrow in the lagoon, seeks the mistiest fortune."

The man in the red robe touched his face with his hands. He got up from his place on the floor and began to walk toward the back of the room, toward a large wooden door, his mouth watering with hunger. When he reached the back of the room he turned toward the group whispering to himself, "When the moon and sea meet on the shore we will eat her flesh."

"I wish to share my house with you. I wish to avoid the great corruption," said Black. "I've traveled to town in lime green fur and stockings and seen the rows upon rows of women without clothes, the foxes on the hills pulling arrows from the earth. So elegant I caught her, where the chorus girls were, crossing the spine of the afternoon. Yellow, do you recall a wind swept shore?"

She nodded and said, "I sat and ate with you on the huge sea wood, with my hair wet and braided, wearing pearls and ostrich plumes."

"I remember there were tomatoes on your apron and suddenly I found my otherwise slumbering horse a single breath from death," said Black.

"It is not impossible to recall a wild mint butternut squash," said Green.

"Or the blacksmith in the high plains and the remarkable number of people breathing his soot," said Orange.

"I breathed it in while leaving the grocery store with eyes whipping and beating the milky clouds carrying all the food for the evening's feast," said Blue.

"That night we dined on the sand with the two bearded bathers," said Indigo.

"You were naked under your blue dress, near the haunted rocks," said Violet to Blue.

The man in the red robe went out of a large wooden door in the back of the room, holding his arms. Once outside, he sat down on a bench in the arcade and there he heard in the silence the sound of running water, and a flute in the distance. Violet began to stand and walked away from the group toward the back door following Red. She left the house and then walked over and sat down with him on the bench. She turned her head to Red and said, "I'd really like to share a meal with you."

"The snow has been falling outside. The ground is sufficiently wet," replied Red to Violet.

Violet put out her hand to Red and said, "Now follow me. I'm following the smell of honey." She started to smile. The man in red gave her his hand and they walked on down the hall.

They found a naked young boy in the garden out back carrying a tray of grape juice under the heavy clouds. They sat and drank together and suddenly there, within the view of a moonlit forest she opened wide her mouth and took him, rosy faced under the falling snow. "Better than terrifying shallowness in a railway station," she said while kissing his lips, "or a burning sermon, sung from the black bird."

"We have all been, at some time, the subject of eyes golden and otherwise emerald green," replied Red, removing Violet's robe, revealing her naked skin.

 

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SEEING SOUND

by Emily Jean Snyder

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"Seeing Sound" painting by Emily Jean Snyder

 

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