Unseen Guide


[If you could choose to be a master (or mistress) of any skill in the world, which skill would you pick?]

Imagine. I heard that word at the beginning of a song about the dawn of a new century. It’s a powerful word, and the voice, equally so. It’s a door; it beckons. Open up to the possibilities, it urges.

And so I did. It took a few moments, minutes, whatever, to find (to imagine) of what would I want to be Mistress. I couldn’t exactly picture what accouterments would go along with it, though I think I lean more toward the little winged creatures that flitter by in the blades of grass; gossamer wings outstretched, lifting me from shoulder to shoulder of the ones who seek inspiration.

Muse. It’s such an elusive word, yet, everyone who creates claims to have one. Where do they live when not spreading – or is it sprinkling?- the magic dust of creation? In crevices with the spirits of rocks? Lodging with the owls in trees? Using the silky webs of sister spinners for a hammock?

It is whispered that there are nine, named Calliope, Clio, Euterpe, Erato, Melpomene, Polyhymnia, Terpsichore, Thalia and Urania. Does it  not remind you of “The Naming of Cats?” each one having three separate names? Or of Reindeer, perhaps? Though a Sprite must have more etherial names, like… well they’re secret, aren’t they? Their arrival might sound like the rustling of leaves, giving one the impression they may have heard something, yet realizing, ‘Tis the wind. This it is, and nothing more.’ Still, in the twinkling of an eye, they pull their inspiration from the very air itself.

Oh how exciting to be unseen, unknown, and yet needed from barrow to throne; in alleys and in courts, cell dwelling, or guiding the quill of a poet. Then stealing away in search of another who bemoans their retched moments of doubt.

That Sweet Territory of Silence

OASIS Prompt:

Silence. I would never have expected it to be comforting. On a Tai Chi retreat, we gathered at a place on Long Island. After settling in, we met for dinner, which is when they lowered that boom: “From this point on, we will maintain silence.” I could feel the words flowing through me, at first tiny tendrils of uncertainty. My mind felt lost. What? No words? Not a peep? Not even a mouse?

Slowly it began to take shape, as vast as a desert, eons of not being able to run my game. Worse, having to be with myself, alone amid the quietly bustling crowd. I rebuked it: NO! Held my fore fingers up, a cross warding off the terror: NEVER! It was futile. The decree had been passed, and I was suddenly, irrevocably in a world, only myself with whom to discourse.

The Universe has such interesting ways of introducing me to that which is needed in my life. Instead of the frigid folds of fear, the weekend was like nestling into a plush bed of the softest fur, warm, comforting and cozy. At some point, which has been lost in my memory vault, I embraced this bliss; so much so, that I elected to take weekends in that sweet golden territory, during the years which followed, of my own accord. I even managed a whole week, one vacation, and endeavored to imagine a lifetime, like the hermits who took vows and lived in silent enclaves of Selfness.

The evolution from novice to devotee was painfully long. New retreats, where words were permitted, but which brought to me ever closer to why silence was so important, spouted wings in forest glades.

Treelined trails in the midst of Nature became my hallowed halls. I learned that allowing myself to step aside, I found a wealth of gifts in a world so alive, where the whispers of the wind in the trees bore messages from a far greater aspect than my own limited mind might ever achieve.