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Archive for September, 2012

Mist

‘I would imagine that the deep and dark/ May fall apart and that a soul in prison/ will flame upon the mountain-side/ above all life or tragedy or heart,/ O, that the deep and dark will fall apart/ so that the spirit knoweth whence it came/ and where to it soon goeth, fire to flames…’

I imagine myself- standing on the edge of an abyss- an unfathomable depth- as fiercely savage as the subterranean hollows, depicted on canvas, by the likes of Salvator Rosa or Piranesi.

I behold the terrible chasm- remembering life and thinking almost unconsciously of death- and my mind is filled with a dark terror- agonised by the fear of the unknown.

In the first numbing moment- sheer trepidation reduces me into a shapeless mass of unrecognisable matter- my soul like an abject worm grovels in the dirt. Weakly, I close my eyes- no longer able to resist the wave of chaotic unreason that overwhelms my rational mind, as I stand subdued- in the dreadful presence of the incomprehensible.

Time stands still but despite my secret wish- I cannot pretend to be unresponding and unseeing forever. Gradually, therefore- quaking with barely-suppressed horror and revulsion, I reopen my eyes…. And to my infinite eyes, instead of the precarious slope- I gladly see the morning-mist… rising from the unseen depths and unselfconsciously reaching out for the heavens above.

The mist slowly enshrouds me- like an enormous cape- from head to foot- and what lies before undergoes a metamorphosis. The reality that like an octopus had spread its tentacles around me- is converted into the substance of vapour.

I enter- willingly, into this warm cocoon of illusion and etherealised sensations.

I scarcely view the events that occur in a world- which, is now only a foggy dream- obscured by faint memories or perhaps by a desire for forgetfulness. The strange sounds- I strain my ears to hear are almost unearthly- because they seem to arrive from an unimaginable distance.

Ugliness fades away- warts and wounds disappear- the world appears beautiful and unreal. There is, of course, pain and suffering but there is also a realization of the insubstantial nature of things.

Unembodied time ceases to matter. Nothing is distressing enough to threaten my ephemeral dreams- no hope of immortality- no lasting desire for glory or fame.

There remain just momentary illusions- nursed for momentary pleasure. Perhaps- this is why- poets, sometimes chase those ‘wind-enchanted shapes of wandering mist’- and yearn to escape to their distant lands of enchantment on the ‘viewless wings of poesy’- Rapturous at the thought of begetting feathers, in the manner of these men of unbridled imagination- I, too, allow fancy to play upon the surface of my vision.

Consequently, as the clouds of paradise descend upon the lowly ground, trees become giants, shacks become fortresses, and, men become gods.

The world is invested with such incorporeal and awful beauty that I seem to breath and exist in a trance- and my apprehension grows dim with wonder- I dizzily fall on my bended knees to worship life- that has become as exquisite as poetry.

Nothing is commonplace for I recognise the spirit encapsulated within the shadowy form and as I look at the darkening sky- I suddenly realize that I do not feel indifferent- any longer.

I wonder why? Maybe, I have learnt at last- to seek- the essence beneath the romance; the eternal truth beneath mundane reality.

The mist has endowed sight to my soul.

The caverns become visible once again, below the sky flecked with stars- I look down into the mouth of the bottomless chasm and this time- feel no fear.

Slowly, silently- I raise my arms- spread them like wings, and allow my relaxed body to fall over the edge- into the gaping void- I fall and fall and this sensation of dropping- almost floating on air continues…

Memories rush back but I recollect not the single incidents or the isolated moments but the integrated-coherent whole and the insignificant planet grows and grows in understanding to ultimately equal the illimitable universe.

Time flows past, like the liquid sky and the innumerable moments attain a sort of timelessness.

Everything is draped in epiphanic rejoicing for the stars- burning like flames of fire- in the open heart of the abyss tell me that I am a part of legend- a part of eternity.

The deep and dark has finally fallen apart and the end has become the beginning.

[Another article that I had written for my college magazine.]

Copyright © 2002 [Violet Dolui]. All Rights Reserved.

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