|It’s odd, really, this whole experience. Don’t quite know what to make of it, but am glad that we’ve received these amazing scrolls, anyway. Don’t know if I should be writing all of this down, yet perhaps this strange sort of dream-like vision, thing, whatever, I had, could be useful to others too. Just to say that it took me many sittings before I got the to the last point I’m describing below. Every time, I seemed to progress further in this vision till I got to the end.
Mind you, I was in front of the Orpheus scroll, with the Pegasus Scroll to my right, snug in its own container. Since the others had said they’d heard music of an indescribable beauty in their heads, when working on the Orpheus Scroll, I was curious about it too. So I just went, and sat in front of it. I said in my mind, OK, Mr Orpheus, let it out. Let your music roll. Am ready for your private concert for one. And before I’d even finished that thought, I realized there’d always been this sort of tune, more of a far-off refrain really, that had always been in my inner ear, but that I’d never paid too much attention to. Like a childhood tune, comforting, repeating. And as it grew in strength, the Orpheus Scroll started to move, very subtly and gently, so that if others hadn’t told me about their experience, I wouldn’t have noticed it in the first place.
Then, as if it intuited that I was receptive to the music, it shifted ever so slightly, and the simple childhood notes became a bit more layered, a bit more complex, but I don’t know how to describe it. And as I began to follow the music without even noticing it. The scroll rose in the air in its small container, and started moving along the waves of the music. I couldn’t help watching it, almost hypnotized. But at some point, I suppose my eyes must have closed.
The wonderfully gentle scents brought me to this forest glade, full of a soft light. Snow-drops and blue-bells were nodding gently amongst the green grass, hidden by freshly washed ferns. I couldn’t put a name to the other white, and pale pink flowers, though I had the impression I had seen them before. Thick ancient trees stood loosely around the glade, almost as it guarding it. Even the fronds, the vines, and grasses were unusually beautiful, with a tint of freshness, as if they’d just sprung up at the dawn of a new spring. Perhaps a stream gurgled softly further away.
The diffused, mellow light gave it an unearthly feel. Birds sang far-off, melding in the tune that was the forest. And the forest was the tune. A small bird fluttered in from the right among the tops of the trees, singing in tune to the music. Swooping down, it flew out of the glade from the left.
A mysterious glow at the corner of my eyes. Yet, I knew I shouldn’t look. I had to let it approach me. Though it wasn’t easy, I remained still. Receptive. Open.
As the glow approached, it became an outline. A horse? My excitement grew, as the music testified. Yet, I remained as still as this ancient forest. The form approached in a wide circle, and slowly before my eyes there emerged a shape. A horse. But wait. It couldn’t be. And yet it was. With a barely visible cone. A unicorn. In this world, anything can happen. Keep your heart open, the music whispered. And I just let things unfold. Keep the space open, the music urged. And I did, as the shape solidified into a unicorn.
Still I couldn’t look directly at its misty horn, as I became mesmerized by its orbs. Blue eyes with whirlpools in their depths, if one looked too closely. Eons fanned out from the unicorn, as it stood there patiently. Is it really here? The music asked, are you really here? Does it matter? The tunes rippled out. Two white birds then flew in and out of the glade from the middle branches of the trees, their song melding seamlessly into the bigger theme. Milky white feathers of the unicorn quivered ever so slightly in their wake. I was delighted to make out the magnificent wings folded on his sides, their edges rimmed with a faint silvery light.
I suppose I must have held out a hand, for it felt like a feather dropped onto it. The lilting notes calmed and lulled my senses, as another plume brushed my cheek. And I knew that Pegasus was offering me a gift. I felt very safe. The music reflected my peace and joy. Five little pale yellow chicks popped out from under a bush, before retreating back again, their tiny chirps felt like they were a part of the tune.
And I became the feather, floating gently along on the breeze. Uncaring, without any thought. Just letting the breeze take me where it would. The music was the breeze, the feather, myself, and Pegasus in his unicorn form. I don’t know how long I stayed there, for time didn’t exist in that realm.
An ordinary, everyday noise, like a door closing brought me back to my body. Yet, I wasn’t annoyed. I found I was still sitting in front of the Orpheus scroll, which was floating back to the floor of its container. I inclined my head towards it, as the last whiffs of the enchanted glade faded away. I’d never felt this full of peace, this safe, this whole, in my entire life before. I sat there for a while, just absorbing the peace. As I tried to hang onto the fading melodies, for the life of me, I couldn’t have said what instruments Orpheus may have used. Perhaps they didn’t exist in our world. But it didn’t really matter. The peace from this encounter had seeped into my inner being. Just experiencing it was enough. Don’t know what further meditations will reveal.
Author’s Note: The above journal entry is excerpted from my manuscript ‘Shifty Scrolls.’ A young epigraphist, and unusual patterns analyst, (codenamed) Daisy is part of a super-secret team of researchers. As they struggle to decrypt the mysterious, almost sentient scrolls related to certain Greek deities, with obscure, ancient writings, will they discover why they got them in the first place? As these scholars grapple to decipher unusual symbols and glyphs, will they discover the real purpose of different scrolls in the long run? Will they be able to avert disaster on a large scale? But to what extent are they willing to let this journey transform them? Possibly the peace that Daisy found in her foray into the world of Pegasus will resonate with some readers too.
|Bio & Link|
|Of Indian origin, Sultana Raza has presented many papers related to Romanticism and Fantasy in international conferences. Her 100+ articles (on art, theatre, film, and humanitarian issues) have appeared in English and French. Her creative non-fiction has appeared in Litro, and A Beautiful Space. Her fiction has received an Honorable Mention in Glimmer Train Review (USA), had been published in Coldnoon Journal, Szirine, Apertura, Entropy, and ensemble (in French). Her poems have appeared in 50 + Journals, including Columbia Journal, and The New Verse News, London Grip, Gramma, Columbia Journal, Classical Poetry Society, spillwords, and The Peacock Journal. Say hello on Facebook or visit her website.|