Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Why I write fairy tales: When the real is too unreal 101

When the real is too unreal
~ a walking stick in the helpful people corner becomes a magical o'o

I'm starting out my day this morning (now more than eight hours ago) with a glint of the positive in me. It's an early start to the day and we are preparing to go work with Claude the Greenman in his Shelton gardens. Another day of working for food is a great way to spend time. We collect our jugs of well water, take extra clothes just in case, pack our lunch, finish boiling up the organic eggs for nibbling on the way down, and make sure we take the freshly dehydrated buckwheat crackers for the Greenman. The drive is an hour and traffic is busy ... lots going on so we both pay attention. For whatever reason we get to the gardens ... no Claude. We didn't email him to confirm ... so we wait an hour and leave him a note, "Aloha Claude .....we're going to the Olympia Food Co-op and will swing by afterwards to see if you still need help. A hui hou (seeyoulater), M & P. No this part of the story is not one of the reasons I write fairy tales. The next part of the story is why I write fairy tales.

To get to Olympia Pete took Highway 101 South. The roadsides are drying up from all the dry summer weather, even though the morning was cool and overcast the green was definitely more straw than evergreen. The weeds and undesirable vegetation was already recycling itself into seeds. Here ... this is why I write fairy tales. Up ahead I see that there are Washington State trucks in driving slowly along the center divide between H-101 South and H-101 North. Tank trucks!! The tanker truck in front is spraying fan-sized liquid onto the already drying undesirable grasses...that would be herbicides. This is the stuff that makes my liver bloat with toxic overload, burns my skin and my eyes and adds to the unreality of the convenient yet warlike choices to keep poisoning without permission. Poisoning is poisoning, without warning or way to escape/take a different route ... THAT IS THE REASON I KEEP WRITING FAIRY TALES.

Herbicides and Pesticides are bad. Those chemicals and their by-products kill quickly and kill slowly. There is nothing good about them, and I actively send my emails and sign my name to the guys in charge of all this nonsense telling them to 'JUST STOP IT ALREADY.' As long as I have some energy to keep doing this sign my name to things thing I'll probably do it. I accept that my body is exposed over and over, take all the precautions I can, connect with support people and then I GO WRITE FAIRY TALES.

Here is the third installment of my full-length fairy tale WOOD CRAFTING written with inspiration from the beings and forms of nature that live here on the Ledge. In so many ways the experience of being human is alien to me: I just don't get way we allow the military, the corporations, the leadership of powerful conglomerates to tamper with 'clean and innocent.' Since I don't get it ... I open to the source of my imaginings and draw the ancient wisdoms of systems greater than greed to weave a tale of a re-assembled reality.

If you are new to VardoForTwo this is one form of expression that happens here... story telling and fairy tale conjuring is often the only way to make sense of the nonsense. Building a life from a wee wheelie home will do that. When you live small, the truths come knocking loudly. Catch up on the other installments of WOOD CRAFTING by linking below:


And when you're done there ... come back to here and read forward ... or, if you wish to just jump in here the story will take you where you need to go. In a fashion a fairy tale is meant to defy time and reason since this tale anyway is written because the real just seems too unreal anyway. This is a very long tale that will last a good many installments so enjoy them as you will and know that if you too have found your world unreal and unfit for the time that fits neatly on the face of a wristwatch there is time for you here ... look for it.

Put the kettle on for tea, find that comfy blanket and join me for a bit of a story ...

Copyright, Mokihana Calizar


Mokihana Calizar

Part I, continues

Freeilll Noa of the Islands

Cosmic islands existed in the stories of Wood Crafters for as long as wind was given air to breath. Spread across the skies the islands rode the winds in the southern hemisphere and in particular the Wood Crafters favored the air near the constellation of The Seven Sisters. My father’s covey fished the waters of The Seven Sisters for generations and was valued for their lore of tidal richness and sacred prayers. Unlike my mother’s branch of Crafters Freeilll Noa of the Islands was bred to a tradition of listening and except for the unproductive nights of the moon … when fishing waited and utterances of mending and maintenance filled their breaths, his was a silent covey. The Crafters of the Islands could hear a fish rise from the still evening pond a constellation away. Fish were not caught for sport, only for life. Prayers were exchanged at the moment of capture. Death and life replaced the other and no death went uncelebrated as life grew from the loss.

The keenly tuned sense of hearing tended well in a world that was gentle of sounds; on star dust a language of modulation matched the sounding bones within the ear of Island Crafters. Rarely did an Islander wander or be given need to travel to Woods where the song-tellers voices filled the skyways, and if such occasion arose there was always preparation for the assault. A lifetime of communication on star dust alone could be debilitating to a Novice who chanced upon Song or Story out loud. My father was no Novice when he heard the sound of his own name called across the archipelago on what felt to him like a tidal wave. It was an unusual time and a wave of volcanic proportion had been predicted by Honu the sea turtle with memories of time before silence. As my father sat on a stump he reserved for mending his nets and sharpening his bill, Honu surfaced in the shallows. “The day is malia for a day of rest. Unusual for the cycle would you say?” Honu conned his thoughts in my father’s direction. Freeilll had noticed the differences in the tides in recent cycles and nodded to Honu, “I have noticed this old friend. The winds are very gentle and seem almost to be asleep else where. Perhaps an anomaly … ought we be concerned?” The sea turtle had lived through many, many transformations in these cosmos and knew my father would not question if there were no need for concern. “Things are changing Freeilll, I notice how much warmer the oceans are for the season. Hatchings are early and the fry are small but have extremely large eyes and no protrusions for ears. I have felt the swell of a wave volcanic in size. Prepare the covey for the wave. Be ready for the calling. Listen for your name.” With that Honu dug into the sand with her flippers and turned to submerge her mountainous self into the deep.

The night of the full moon is excellent for fishing. My father was accustomed to carrying his small eyed net to the waters edge on the night of Mahealani. His fishing companion was a Crafter less than half my father’s size. Somaia of the South was a cunning man of nearly two hundred cycles with feathers once bright red like the prized fish of the deep seas. Now Somaia’s cape was a subtle salmon, mottled gray feathers alternated through this chest. Though age had softened the color of his cape, Somaia was still a listener unsurpassed. My father and his friend had just reached the marker stone off the southern- most island when the quiet of deep space crackled with the sound of my father’s name. “…Freeilll.”

The voice was clear, deep and captivating. In less than a moment of thought my father was tilted off-balance seized by his talon the voice drew him. The ride was swift and stardust swirled to keep up with him. Somaia’s shock did not last his instinct and loyalty snapped him into action. As his friend shot straight through the sky like a comet the finely woven net dropped from my father’s wings. Somaia dove for the unfolding sennit catching it with talons spread as if throwing it at shore’s edge the old fishermen reserved his motion, and rode the updraft. There was no time to conn between them the speed of the capture commanded both men’s attention. And then, as quickly as it had begun the ride ended. “Where have we come? And why now, Freeilll?” “Honu warned me of the call, prepared me for this. Where? I don’t know. Why? There will be time later.”

The songs of the warming were nearly spent. The seeping light of morning peeled back the glow of moon. My mother’s song completed the night of telling, and she was ready for sleep until she saw a most remarkable sight. A great Grey, a bird like herself, but different and a small reddish bird the size of which she had never actually seen yet had heard of from the crones. A web made of string clung to the small bird who seemed wind-burned. The sight that woke Shemaladia of the Osprey from her tiredness was the ears of the obvious strangers. No member of her covey had ears on the outside of their heads.

The crones felt the presence of the two strangers and were within fingertip of Shemaladia in an instant. Tandalori, the most ancient spoke first, “She, you have called two souls from the long distant archipelago do you recognize the strangers as friends?” Shemaladia was stunned, a condition of which was not usual for my mother. Mute, she simply shook her elegant feathered head from side to side. Aina stood at my mother’s side and laughed, the crones knew then that the strangers’ appearance was expected. Tandalori spoke again, this time her lightning blue eyes crinkled in Aina’s direction. “Are you the conjurer of this event? A Reassembling in the making seems to me.” Without answering the question or the speculation, the old owl nodded instead and assured her sisters that there was no need for upset the day was dawning, the young ones needed to be bedded and guests needed attention. “She, you have souls to attend and a place to prepare. Go and meet your mate, it was you who called him and he needs to know your name.” Still speechless my mother did as she was told.

Shemaladia of Osprey flew from the warming circle with her long time companion, Oona of the Song. They exchanged glances and though I cannot be certain, history records Oona winking at my mother with girl-like anticipation at what could only be called a great adventure. Freeilll and Somaia by this time had reconnoitered, they agreed they were in the Northern Hemisphere of Ever and between them the evidence of a hunter’s covey was without doubt. They heard my mother and Oona before they could see them. Somaia was not without shame as his bill slackened, talons still gripped on the sennit net he had rescued from the fall. He had never seen a Wood Crafter as beautiful as the two winged beings he watched circling above. From the air came noise, “Welcome, we come to bid you good tide and hospitality,” the golden feathered one sang first. Unaccustomed to hearing words both men winced at the sound and drew into their necks instinctively. The women landed inches from them and bowed their beautiful heads in a dance of welcome and then softened their song to a whisper, this time Shemaladia spoke. “I am Shemaladia of Osprey and this is Oona of the Song. You have come to the Land of Osprey, and are welcome.” My mother and her friend carried bundled cedar pouches filled with sweet pine nuts as signs of kindness. If Aina was correct, these travelers would have never eaten the sweet nut of the Sacred Pines as the salt water Islands would not sustain the pine.

Now it was my father’s turn to be stunned. After his ears had adjusted to the whispers of the Osprey, he too marveled at the graceful curve of my mother’s crescent beak, and the shimmer of her black feathered wings hypnotized him. Somaia prodded Freeilll from trance, and pressed a long-rested memory from just above mid-center in his friend’s breast. My father found his voice, “I am Freeilll Noa of the Islands and this is my companion Somaia of the South. We are from the archipelago of the Seven Sisters, fishermen of the reefs and oceans of the Southern Hemisphere and we came when my name was called across the skyways.” For a man of silence, the spoken introduction was clear to hear. Somaia’s pride was apparent as his normally salmon wing feathers glowed more brightly red than they had for decades. My mother was equally pleased with the sound of the silent fisherman and in response she called upon the memory of conning that was introduced to all Wood Crafters throughout Ever. With her eyes closed she saw the song in her and sent it without words, “I have been told that my story song has led you here and that you, Freeilll Noa of the Islands are to be my mate. What you know may be the same, is it so?” Straight talking, song-maker she has been, my mother was not a hunter of renown without being on the mark. She had hit her target and now the Reassembling could unfold with rapid course.

The four Wood Crafters sat in a circle with the bundles of sweet pine nuts in the center. Never to be without provisions, the two fishermen drew ropes of dried and salted fish from the warmth of their under wings. Laid open the bundles of cedar that carried the sweet nuts, made simple platters for both sweets and salted foods. I would have loved to be at that first dinner with polar opposites that morning. Witness to the first awkward nibbles on tiny nuts for the bill-faced men who had never eaten such tiny fare would have been fuel for cosmic comedy. What has been passed in translation is that both bills and beaks fumbled with the delicacies offered that morning. At first neither pair knew exactly how to approach the problem. It was Somaia who finally melted all pretenses and conned with pure honesty and hunger, “I will need some help to taste your sweet pine dear ladies.” With that the old fisherman, made a coil of his dried fish rope with his bill, moved a mound of sweet pine onto the fish with his talon and with one gulp swallowed both with gusto. His smile served as contentment. The observing trio laughed with relaxed ease, and with an eye to his hostesses, Somaia offered up a coil of dried fish rope and sweet pine nuts to my mother and Oona of the Song.

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