Thursday, December 21, 2017

Yule Magic

Twilight deepens across this quiet landscape. Snow has fallen, blanketing everything in soft shapes and rounded poses. I turn, slowly, gently so as not to mar this perfect place. So silent, so still and I realize now that I am dressed in thin veils and snow colored garments. They glow and catch in this tender twilight, in shades of purple, pink and delicate orange. I have grown back into a child's form and find a holly wreath upon my head and tiny sparkling lights woven into my hair.

A unicorn comes towards me now, this most magical of creatures. And I reach for her as she bows her head slowly. She is of the creamiest white and a gold horn between her ears. She lowers her head towards me and I touch the tip of her horn and am transported, to find myself riding upon her smooth, warm back. She moves without a sound; she moves without affecting the snow. I watch the twilight deepen and first stars begin to twinkle in the deep purple sky.

The world takes on this magical hue, deep lavender snow, soft shapes and darkened trees. I feel as if I am floating, riding like this on a most magical creature. The suns rays have faded almost entirely, and in the Eastern sky, the moon rises, a crescent, fair of form and curve. Her faint silver light seems to enchant this vision further and I find myself filled with wonder and delight.

And now we come upon a splendid scene: a circle of trees, merrily decorated with twinkling tiny lights, and in the center of this grove, a long white table filled with colorful food and intricate dishes and festooned with evergreen garlands and bright red bows. Graceful and dancing candle flames are placed along the entire length. At the edges of the grove, two Yule logs burn brightly, their flames crackling and filling the circle with warmth and light.

I slide off of the unicorn as she reaches back to nuzzle my arm. Her breath is warm in this cold air. I realize that even though I am dressed in the lightest of garments, I don't feel cold. The air is crisp and full of the scent of pine and bayberry. I breath deeply and step with mystery into this enchanted place. Sparkling lights and glowing candles greet my gaze and I smile softly.

The food is delicate but rich. Tiny tarts and chocolate cakes, dishes made from fruits and sauces all adorn the spread. I wonder at the tiny size of all I see, but still the intricacy and charm. I feel beguiled with a place so magical and extraordinary in the middle of this snowy place.

My eyes catch at movement to my right and my eyes are drawn slightly below my own height. A gnome moves with surprising gait for someone more portly and dressed so heavily. He nods to me and continues round the table to find a place and there he sits. He has begun a procession of bewitching woodland creatures: fairies and nymphs, dryads and tiny forest creatures file in to find their place at this magical feast. Each regards me with a twinkle in their eye as if they have some great secret. And I watch, feeling shy and yet honored to be graced this vision.

The gnome gestures for me to sit at the table, and I take a place, albeit somewhat self consciously. But then each creature in turn rises to give me a small present. I am touched by their kindness and willingness to include me in this festive gathering. One gives me a blade of the greenest grass, alive still in this winter scape. Another still gives me a pinecone and still others, tiny morsels of the finest sweets. Then there are other gifts, that seem more mystical and magical by turn: a clock that I can bend and fold over on itself, a horn when placed to the ear produces the most magical tinkling melodies, melodies that make me giggle; I am given a sparkling glass that shows the future and a cut crystal meant to bring clever dreams. And the final present thrills me most of all, a tiny silver made bell, crafted and hammered to shine and glimmer and when rung, the most pure and enchanting of sounds peels forth, a sound that is more felt than heard. I feel transported, these lovely things placed around me and before me.

I murmur a soft whisper of gratitude and the feasting commences. Although the dishes are tiny, I find myself filled and satisfied. The sweets are like none I have ever tasted before, their texture and flavor filling me with heady senses and softened motions. I am caught, spellbound in this magical place.

And then it is time for me to leave this beautiful gathering. I nod to the small creatures, the squirrels with their tufted chins, and the fairies with their colorful garbs and the rabbits with wise eyes and birds with their timorous chirping. I take tiny hands and paws and claws in mine. My hand tingles to feel these intricate connections. Each one nods or blesses me by turn and slowly I find that vision fading into the night. The stars sparkle like a thousand jewels set in velvet above my head and there my unicorn finds me, warmed by the gentle kindness of these blessed creatures.

The longest night of the year is begun and I climb slowly upon her back, sleepy and satisfied, content to let my dreams carry me to first light.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Princess of Swords

There, cloaked in darkness, I find myself silent and still. Slowly, a light breaks and seems to shine from behind me, illuminating a large and ornate wooden door just in front of me. There is nothing else in this dim room. I study the door. Dark, heavy wood and intricate paneling seem to draw me towards it. I take one step and then another and reach for a large antique brass handle in the middle of this grand door. Slowly I push down to hear it click and struggle forward on old and rusted hinges. A misty cold air assails me and I am drawn through without stepping at all.

I find myself in a misty place, obscured by millions of tiny droplets of water. I reach my hands in front of me wondering how far I can see and my eyes water to feel the mists so close and me unable to see farther than my fingertips. I realize I am finely dressed in an ancient, green brocade gown that weighs me unnecessarily. I cannot shake the feeling of being almost unable to move or even breath. Multiple, heavy skirts pull at my body and I find myself wishing to sink to the ground below to relieve this weight. I feel trapped and something strikes at my heart, a deep and irrational fear and I glance about myself to realize I can see nothing beyond myself. If a predator is watching, I am unable to know.

I feel this deep seated fear pawing at my deepest core. I struggle against this fear of my surroundings and try to walk away from this dread I sense. The air is heavy, moist and dank. It is fetid and thick and I draw each breath with labored effort. A bird begins a call somewhere in front of me, steady and calling. The sound draws me towards this bird but I listen with fear building in me and wondering what she knows that I cannot. Then she quiets and I am again left in this unearthly, muffled stillness. Slowly I take a step forward and realize I am walking on thick mud that sponges a bit with each step. I reach down, pulling on the hem of the heavy gown to look at my feet. There, I notice thick mud oozing about my toes. For some reason this sensation makes me feel a bit better. I notice that I am connected in some way to the earth and I am a little less fearful.

Something shifts around me. It seems the mist has lifted a bit from my shoulders and eyes and I peer to my left to notice an elaborate stone altar. Gray rocks and intricate details strike me. It is artfully made and constructed. This pagan altar has been filled with all manners of strange and gruesome things. I find a bloody wing, a black and twisted ribbon, an old bone still with wilted skin, and another, a garish mask contorted in a last breath. I recoil to see these things. They repulse me. I look away.

And yet again, the misty droplets lighten. I notice that I am in a forest glade and all is deep wet greens and dark woods around me. The air has cleared a bit more and I can smell a bit of pine and juniper in my breaths. I breath a bit easier and deeper and feel strength in those familiar scents. Apprehensively, I glance back at the altar and realize the pile of things has grown and yet I cannot make out their exact form. I find myself angry at these things that ruin so beautiful a place and I reach my hand up to swing at the pile and knock it off the altar. In that second, I feel a sharp and terrible pain in my right foot! I fall to the side gasping at the strength of the pain that reaches through my every fiber and causes me to feel faint. There in the grass, a small dark snake is slithering away. It has red spots down it's back and it hisses an angry retort before slithering away. I shake and tremble in abject fear and terrible pain. I reach to lift the skirt of my heavy gown and see blood running down my foot; the pain intensifies. I gasp to feel it and at that moment realize the mists have retreated even farther from me. The day grows brighter now.

I look again at the bite mark and realize that is glowing from within me and that glow is spreading thru my foot and up my leg in a rapid ascent. There is almost a sparkler like quality as it crackles and begins to transform my skin and burn the dress away. Large pieces of dark green fabric fall way and shrivel into ash as they float to the ground; each piece, and I feel lighter. My legs are lit by this otherworldly golden glow and I watch the fire spread thru me and in the end I am dressed only in the lightest of garments, feathers of a sort. I reach my hands up and allow the searing power of this transforming venom to perform its magic on me. It reaches higher and higher and I find my being enraptured in a pain that is almost pleasure and heady awareness. And I feel myself begin to scream, and then the scream turns to this note of purest intensity and I am singing so fully at the top of my lungs. I feel my throat open and I turn and turn, slowly, allowing the scream to fill me and all of this sound to pierce the remaining mists before me. The sound fills me so entirely and I feel consumed by it and as if I will consume the world before me with it.

The mists lift with each tone emulating from my being until they have fallen away entirely to the deep blue sky above me. The now fiery and radiant gold of my skin joins the radiant burning yellow of the sun. I feel my self lit from within and without. I revel in the brightness but my eyes struggle to adjust. And now I notice, a sacred white Ibis stands at my right side and I reach for it, sure I am to mount it and take flight. But as I reach, I realize my arms have become wings and my body is light and covered in white feathers. I bend my legs and leap up and up and begin to soar. All of this is below me. The altar is fading now, these gray stones turned white and shimmering in the brightest of early morning suns. I feel the warmth of the sun on my back and the wind flows under and over and around me.

I am the beginning of wisdom and all knowing.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The Hierophant

I find my feet on solid gray stone; gray stone that stretches away from me, forming a long corridor. To my right, many columns appear in a row, supporting a very old edifice. I gaze up and up at spires that reach into morning blue sky forming an ancient cathedral. All is ornate and chiseled and stunning. In front of me, each column lets in the rising sun and I feel it warm on my face. I walk forward and the sun is temporarily obscured by each pillar I pass. I walk like this for a while, feeling the warmth and feeling the cool in turn. I notice then, that a choir has begun the slowest, most beautiful chant. Long tones in perfect harmony blend behind me as I gaze into the sun's rays and for a moment I close my eyes feeling and hearing the vibrations of the voices in my soul

The strains of choral music have filled the spaces behind me. And I turn, feeling drawn by music more heavenly than I have heard before. I step towards the opening of this grand cathedral that has arisen in the spaces behind the columns. Grand spires are reaching towards the sky with bells tolling. Chiseled stone work and expert masonry rise in stunning beauty. I watch gargoyles ready to take flight and feel each motif and decoration of this intricate edifice within my being. Each spire and each ornament seems to touch something inside of me and I turn towards the heady beauty. There is a heaviness that seems to root my feet in place. I am so small compared.

I inch forward on silent feet. turning into the grand portico and entering this grand place. I look up to see faint light streaming in thru colored glass. Beams and rays of sun seem distinctly placed without becoming a wash of light. I find myself in a dim circle as if I am truly alone even though the voices of the choir fill my very core making thought almost impossible.

I stand behind a grand congregation attired as one with their backs to me and robes in differing shades of gray and black. Their heads are bent contemplatively in reverent worship. High above all this, an intricate ceiling painted in the brightest mural catches my gaze. Here shepherds lead their flocks across rolling green hills and maidens fetch water in stone urns. I notice swirling cloaks of deep color and watch faces that are indistinct. Angels grace fluffy golden clouds and tiny cupids flit amongst the common folk with eyes raised so in awe. Even in these faces I feel reverence and worship.

My gaze shifts now to the front of this grand place and I watch a serious priest slowly proceed down the aisle. He wears a triple golden crown balanced perfectly on his head. His eyes are closed in furrowed concentration as he swings an ewer back and forth from which pours a fragrant smoke. I am engulfed in a misty hazy and I feel my head grow light and distant in the catch of this sacred place and the potent incense. He continues to walk and then as he reaches the last row, he turns and slowly proceeds forward again. His flowing robes, deep velvet red, fall to trail on the smooth stones below his feet. He is unaware of any but his deep devotion. I watch his crowned head bob and gesticulate. I feel as if I am there but growing farther away, lost in the scent of so much grandeur.

To my right, I realize so many tiny candle flames burning. They are warm and shimmering. I seem to float along the side of the church to where they reside. As I reach my hand to feel their warmth, I startle to realize I have no form. I am of this place but invisible. I reach thru myself but I am as though I were not there. I barely feel my feet, lighter now, caught in the deep reverence and quiet and the knowledge of my invisible passage here. I look around to see that those I thought were gripped in reverential awe are faceless ones, captured in their dark robes and standing so tall and still. They are frozen there and I cautiously leave the candled prayers and memories to continue towards the front.

There stands the choir, mirroring those of the congregation. They are clad in robes of brilliant white and gold and hoods that hide any face to be seen. I wonder at these dark and light ones facing each other in deep worship. It seems a mirror of sorts and my gaze passes back and forth between it all.

I have reached the front and face this priest, seated now in regal pose. In this place, he is the only one with a visible face. His velvet robes cascade about him and land in perfect waves at his feet. He faces forward barely seeing me and I wonder at the heavy crown of gold he must wear upon his head. It seems so heavy and of the most pure of golds encrusted with few gems. His hand, he holds high as if to bless me and those behind me and I feel as though it radiates some sort of power that I fear. Then he looks in my direction and I feel the watery but observant eyes of him boring into my soul. I find my misgivings seen there and I glance down in humble concern. He has seen my invisible form when no others could. I raise my eyes again as I sense him offering me his triple scepter to take and touch. Stretching my hand, I lightly rest my fingertips against it and feel this heavy power. Startled I withdraw my hand, mumbling a hurried benediction as I turn from him.

I reach for a sacrament and watch it turn to dust in my invisible hand. It lifts into so many sparkling filaments and a million tiny floating dusty motes and I realize a ray of sun has caught them from a window too high above my head to see. Leaving them floating there, I proceed down the center aisle.

I walk slowly, one foot and then another. It is so still here and I am the only motion I sense even though I am unseen.

With my vision downcast I realize the aisle between this congregation has begun to turn to green mossy grass. I place my feet, feeling the cool gentle touch of this earth beneath them. Slowly I raise my head to realize the entire front of the church is now a grassy field, resplendent in wild flowers and verdant green. The congregation has faded to my sides. My feet relax into the gentle soil and fragrant grass and I breath deeply of nature. A tiny bird calls. I hesitantly glance behind me to realize the church has faded to a gray shimmering image. It appears as a mirage in the golden light and I watch it grow fainter and fainter until I am barely sure of the lines that created so sure an image. I turn forward again to realize I walk along a row of trees. They are evenly spaced one after the other and I walk beside them, the sun warming me and the trunks shadow cooling me by turn. I am reminded of the gray columns earlier in this vision but this cathedral is made of deep blue and high reaching sky, and deep brown earth below. Each trunk is a rough barked column and I slow my walk to reach out my arms to this living corridor. Solid trunk and living tree. I pause to feel the sun upon my face and realize a tiny blue bird has perched before me calling the most glorious whirl of music and song. I am enchanted before all lifts away to bring me back to this place.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Fool

It's crisp and cool. I hug my arms tighter around me, this first spring day. There's still the chill of winter, the tiny grasses pushing their way thru dripping and melting snow. Tiny alpine flowers catch in the fresh breezes and I glance up to see I am surrounded by blue, snow capped mountain peaks. I stand in this great expanse. The mountains don't tower over me because I am walking upon one them. In between them the valley drops so far below and my heart catches a bit in my chest to feel how high I am.

I walk a tender path and barely one at that, littered with remnants of snow and ice and I feel poorly dressed for this day. My gown is thin and sheer. I feel the damp coolness deeply even though the sun shines. Mists and clouds are even with my hands and I reach to touch the filmy haze. Still, brightness fills this place. A sense of anticipation that far outweighs that pale sun tremors thru my thin frame. I clutch my thin gown closer to my shivering body.

I take one tentative step and then another. There is no memory of how I have come to this far off and lofty place. ...another step. I don't remember before and I only take in the now. Although such magnificence surrounds me, my eyes remain cast down and noticing the tiny plant beings that begin to grow and stretch in this spring that has dawned. I notice small pink flowers and dainty bluebells and fresh shoots of grass. All is tiny and delicately adorned. I smile gently to see such stubborn growth in this almost harsh but magnificent place.

Caught in my reverie, I realize there is a jaunty whistling in the air and finally I raise my eyes. I notice a man, brightly dressed and almost seeming to dance towards me on this path. He reminds me of a leprechaun and I smile to watch his confident walk and happy demeanor.

His clothes are fine and his shoes and leggings remind me of many days gone by. Bright golds and reds and something green. He is ornate and old fashioned. But somehow his vitality makes it hard to look at anything else and he is the brightest part of my vision in these stunning mountains. "Ho there" he seems to call and question in one phrase. I smile and reach out my hand to span this magnificent scenery. "Isn't it lovely, this first day of spring?" I call, my smile belying the reticence I feel.

He seems less interested in me though and more intent on this journey he is set upon. He barely answers except for a huge smile gracing his amiable face. "Follow me, if you wish?" and he passes me and continues down the path which I now realize is headed straight over the edge of this mountain precipice we stand on. I think to grab him back and protect him. But he is not bent on any sort of destruction. His face and his body are filled with life and delight and so much bright energy. But before I can do anything, I notice a small terrier barking noisily at his heels and the man reaches over to scoop up the dog, laughing at him all the while. "Calm, Spartacus, calm..." he reassures the small dog and then turns again to the air that fills the space before him.

"There's nothing there sir", I call, seeing his intent to walk over the edge.

"O but my dearie, there is...don't you see that path that is made in the clouds before us?" And truly, as my gaze turns, I see each cloud like a stepping stone across the expanse of valley before us. There is a way of sorts chained in between these great mountains, and my mouth rounds to see it.

And as I stare, all of this falls away and I notice the landscape changing drastically. I am alone now and the sky has darkened. The sea rages beneath me and I stand on a tall stone cliff feeling myself destined to fall. Although the vertigo rises up to engulf me, I feel no fear. I only know the exhilaration of all that is to come and I already feel the surge in my being and the initial step and the plummeting that raises my core into my throat. All around me gray clouds roll and spill over each other in an almost angry dance. The sea below crashes in white wave upon white wave over a dark blue expanse.

And I am heady with the knowledge of surrendering to the deep pull and magic of the dark waters below. I know I will not come undone and I will cocoon myself as I submerge and I will know the world underwater as I haven't known it before and I will live and breath and find my being in that place.

And truly as I fall, the water catches me, surprisingly warm and folding over me in deep embrace. I feel myself covered and safe. I swim gracefully, growing a tail where once I had legs and breathing through my mouth as if I had sprouted gills. I feel as if I have become of the merfolk. I am free but supported. My body feels no weight any longer. Deep blue and shades of white and lighter blue swirl around me. This dance of the sea is more beautiful than anything I have experienced before. She waltzes and tugs and pulls and carries and enfolds. Tiny bubbles of the purest form float by me and tickle my arms and I giggle this soft underwater sound. Bubbles that sparkle and catch at the sun so far above. I am warm and safe and this is the world I know beyond the other.

Tiny creatures share this dance with me, ebbing and flowing and swimming with the tides and currents. I reach to touch soft membranes and shimmering jellyfish. Tentacles twist and twirl in this darkened light. I am fascinated and rendered calm and floating.

These visions fold on top of one another seeming almost to fall upon me in rapid succession. I am powerless to stop their path forward.

I recede from the stirring and vibrant visions, now finding myself in the dark of a womb of cultivation, of inner knowing. No longer do I see with my eyes. It is here that I see the zero so clearly from the card. Zero, expanding stretching - it is a circle, it is a cup, it is a holding of sorts. And I feel the dawning of realization and the knowing of how much zero can hold. Zero holds infinity and from nothing comes all that ever was and ever will be. Zero can not be placed in a pattern. Zero is the cup I now hold and which holds me and into which I can put everything and nothing. Zero is the cosmic egg that holds the universe and all potential that surrounds and stretches out into the beyond. All is possible. At first I was formless and void and darkness covered me. But now I will be reborn into infinity. And the egg cracks as I push against this unseen wall.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Divine Feminine

This blog is dedicated to my sweet friends Lauren and Allison who have taught me so much concerning the Divine Feminine...with so much love


Images...velvet, sinking, sensation. There is all and this grandeur and then there are pinpricks of vision. Temple, tent, grove, sea. I am in each place by turns, caught in this web of sensation, unable to move much but just to absorb and just to be. Stillness, arms raised, sky so far, and earth so close, and then stars around me and then earth so far. And earth skimming away almost as if I have taken flight in this vortex and am being pulled along and into - this rush of sound and everything so loud and cacophonous.

There is this red tent - there is the ancient and this primal. And there is this swirling - so many dancers and ornate skirts adorned with tiny wooden castanets and dancing tambourines and ribbons. Scarves and skirts whirling in the night, gossamer and catching the shimmer of light and play of color - flames dancing and giving a shape not quite human. Shadows distorted and taller than usual, slimmer and with more willow like form. And there is blood running down my legs and nothing to stem its flow - my moon blood. It is ancient and it is all the ages and it is all of life and it is sustaining. I raise up empowered and emboldened. I am the mother but the mother is all. I will create and I am the bridge of the spirit and body. I am the medium that will take spirit inside my own and create this body and this earth. Only goddess may be such - only goddess can be this channel. My moon blood dripping onto the earth below and feeding and nourishing.

Then I sink to the ground with it, and feel this dimness pervade, and my body let go and letting the mother hold me and the earth be my pillow and my bed. And now I am earth again but mother is earth and so tangible and so wet and so dusty and so gritty and so soft. And then simmering and this quiet and this altar and this beauty. Earth, tree, leaves. Now so close - each vein of each leaf. Tiny maps to infinite places. Each shortened step I take in these slippers of grass and delicate flowers and all this other silence. A silence that holds sound. Is that possible? Maybe it's more the intricate quiet I feel in this grove. These leaves that rustle and these branches that reach like quiet white barked arms in the darkness. Their form is rootless and their reach is infinite. They create this artwork and this lattice without exact pattern and this shelter with openings to beyond. Stark white and black tracings - these branches dance but gently in the soft night breezes. Dancing slowly but surely and dancing more obviously and this net of safety shaking and trembling and rising up. And the wind carries me again, farther and over and the present things recede and once again more is in my vision. Pinpricks of things that float so clearly into view and then recede just as rapidly - the altar.

The flame. I can see it burning. Dancing - destruction and creation all in that tiny light. I can see all the elements together now created by Mother. Her reach is everywhere, to my deepest self and more that I cannot even fathom. I can see earth and air and fire and now there is water. The sea. The sea. I am so far from it, on a toppy crag. So far above, this cliff, rugged and gray. The sky so gray with it. Spray - salty spray. I am only as the elements - naked and unashamed - clothes and scarves and skirts have faded away and I am vulnerable to all the earth and the Mother and I am at one with her and yet submitted to her entire being. Salty spray - cold and with a texture all its own. It trickles down my face and drips onto my breasts and my knees and onto my toes and I am standing in this coolness. My tears? Or the ocean? The ocean, the lull, the sound, the waves, the rippling, the undulation and the lack of fixed space. How will I descend that cliff? I will float, not on feet, not on earth, but on air, and no motion of my own seems to carry me lower and lower to the edge of that warm and moving water. The sea, it beckons and it calls and I am powerless to stop my path towards it. Now sandy, now briny, now feet wet and there I am, in this warm salty water, earth again but water more. Giving myself up, arms raised, naked and just as I came to this world but now with the marks of all life changing my art. To the sea, to the mother, relinquishment, trust, becoming one again with once what I was. Sinking, losing form, human no more. Rather a bit of sand, and salty sea and sky as well. I can't see anymore but to feel it all. To feel so much as to be everything - to be all land and all water and all trees and then again nothing at all.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

The Moon

Inky darkness settles in around me, so deeply I can almost taste it. With that settling comes an apprehension that seems to rise like so many mists in dark trailing spirals. I close my eyes and feel cool breezes tugging at me and slowly I cross my arms over my heart. My body seems to be rocking and swaying and as I open my eyes ever so little, I realize I am in a rough wooden row boat crudely constructed of beams and planks. I rest my hand against the side and feel the threatening of splinters and pain. The boat pitches and rises in that moment and I feel my stomach lurch with it. Waves lap at the sides of the boat and I am now aware of a scratching at the sides. My heart clenches in fear of the unknown.

I bravely raise my eyes from the bottom of the rough hewn boat and notice how dark it truly is. I know there is water all around me but it is hard to see much beyond the murky shadows. I turn my head to the right and notice far in the distance, the steady light of the moon shines. I find myself drawn to her light and my gaze refuses to break with hers. Shining, shining and as I gaze, I realize the light seems so much stronger than this darkness. Still prickles of fear touch at my skin and I glance around me again finding the moonlight shimmers ever so slightly on the black waters. There are no stars. Only that steady beam. And as I follow the beam out again, I notice I am not far from shore. Indeed I seem to be traveling towards the blackened edge of this body of water. I watch it come closer and closer, still aware of those clawing sounds, still afraid to leave this tiny place of seeming refuge, this rough and painfully constructed boat.

I feel a sharp tug and then my boat seems to stand still. The scratching stops and the small waves seem to beckon with their gentle sounds. I tentatively reach a hand out of the boat and feel the water, almost warm to my fingertips. I realize I am meant to go ashore and I stand carefully finding my balance in the unstable boat. One step and then another, and I am knee deep in this strange dark water. I slosh ashore and gratefully find the rocky solidness under my feet a comfort. I glance again at the moon and realize there is some sort of path before me. The way is faint and littered with tiny sharp shards of rock. I am bare foot, I realize and I know the way will bruise and scar my feet.

Still, I take one step, and then another and suddenly I start to realize there is a beautiful white wolf at my side. I glance into her eyes which seem lit from inside. They are pools of deep blue in this moonlit night. She simply stares back into my own eyes and I sense she is there to guide me. Indeed I hear this calming melodious tone that comforts me even though her mouth has not moved. I place my hand on her smooth fur that reflects the moonlight perfectly. She almost glows and we begin again this path that seems to pull me forward so intuitively. And now I am aware of something dark and shadowy to my left. I am almost afraid to look. But when I do, it is the darkened form of a dog. Her eyes glow yellow and I start at their reflection of my fear. I push closer to the wolf, having found a comfort there.

But the dog means me no harm. I watch as she clings to the shadows and ever so slightly behind me. And we continue on, this strange trio in the moonlight. One step and then another and now I realize there are shadowy mists have started curling and swaying and spiraling around me. I watch in fascination until one of the mists seems to grow eyes. I jump and my heart races. Still another gains a hand and then a foot seems to trip me as I stumble forward in the dark. Suddenly it seems we are surrounded by these ghostly creatures and the light of the moon seems more faint thru their gossamer flight.

I push on, my heart pounding, my feet bleeding and aching. It seems this is a journey of madness and I am only traveling closer to my undoing. I wonder if the path will ever end as it seems I have not traveled any closer to my destination. And I wonder what my destination is. My mind seems muddled and disturbed.

Just when I fear I cannot take another step, I find myself in front of the face of the moon. Her eyes are watching and still and her mouth curves in silent observation. She speaks much without any words to hear. Still my heart feels a comfort and I reach my hand to touch yellowish white beauty and feel the light cool under my fingertips.

Then in one screeching moment, I realize I have lost all ability to perceive anything sensory. My heart races but I can't feel it. My eyes are sightless and all is dark. My ears hear nothing and I am only aware of the vacuum I suddenly find myself in. All is black and I stand on nothing but darkness. I begin to panic. I raise my hands to cover my ears but I don't feel my arms moving. Everything is deafening in the utter silence and lack of feeling. And then I hear the words, Look within...and I lower my head and look deep into my belly. My head is bowed to my chest and I notice inside of my naval a picture begins to grow, of green fields and verdant trees and a bright and golden path which starts with the sun upon it and warmth that I can feel even as I observe. I am at once aware of this darkness in which I stand and the deep glowing that comes from my belly. They stand in stark contrast. I fully look up and again I am assaulted by this utter blackness and terror and sensory deprivation. Quickly I bow my head again to look inside of my belly and I know that I must look this way to see how to walk. I realize I am now stepping this path and I am aware of both realities, the one above my head and the one inside myself.

"The path lies inside of you. The path lies inside of you, the path lies inside of you." These words fill my soul and emanate thru my entire being, reverberating and echoing and vibrating until it is all I am aware of. Racing away and I see the image pull from me as if it were a vortex swirling and I was the center, away away, and now I am laying here again, clutching the moon card to my quaking chest.