Aimea Lunar Reconstruction

A Walk Among the Living

part of: The Wanderers

by Lora of Many Generations

related by Arthur, Nightwandering Ez Perjezlah of the Fourth Generation

E’Lizzia, Cole, and Katherine stood before the blaze. U’Dlyns had wanted the pyre…to return to the Earth and the Sky. He had so loved the forest, the streams, the stars shining down on the land of his birth….now, his body would be one with all of them, in the fashion he had found most pleasing to contemplate.

Cole looked sideways at E’Lizzia. She wasn’t accepting this well. The strong, silent Katherine had turned inward to her own heart in grief, but she wasn’t rebelling….U’Dlyns was gone. It was no one’s fault, not the Ektazians, not Fate, not the Universe. It was the way things had played out.
Katherine would be alright….Cole could see that. But, E’Lizzia….the notions playing out in her mind were painful to watch…blame, anger, self-destructive desires twisting at her heart…. It was never easy to let a loved one go, but E’Lizzia couldn’t remember a time when she had NOT loved U’Dlyns. They had met when they were children, trained together in the Arts of Freedom, Tasking, Learning, Light, Making, Fostering….they had been each other’s first Lover. In the comfort and security of their Sept, they had been each other’s closest confidant, lover, muse. Both of them were skilled Deklamohedrin…so they had even shared the innermost corridors of their inner lives in their choice of Way. E’Lizzia had often wished that she might pass first, because she could not bear the thought of night without U’Dlyns by her side…and yet, this is precisely what had happened.

Cole could see that something needed to be done to help E’Lizzia with this passing. But he knew her well. She would not accept help easily, especially if she were singled out in any way….so Cole went away and found Tana, their community’s oldest Deznahdorean, a deep and compassionate dreamer, creative, kind, much respected. She too knew E’Lizzia and her Sept well. In the days of the Third Generation, Wanderers lived together in small communities of no more than seven Septs, caring for each other all the days of their lives, sharing ease and difficulty, dearth and plenty.

Tana would look deep into the Moment, and find something that might help. She had loved U’Dlyns and E’Lizzia since before their births, when their imminent arrival had been first announced to the community at large. U’Dlyns’ illness had come as a shock and a sorrow, ending a life that all had
hoped would continue for a whole lot longer. Tana took Cole’s hand and said, “come with me dear, let us go together into the Garden and contemplate this Moment.” Her eyes entering his felt the sorrow of a brother who had lost his hero….she quivered, but held firm, her love superceding questions and angers about the mysteries of circumstance. So it was she offered him solace which he found the grace to truly accept. He was a fine Ez Perjezlah.

The two Wanderers walked toward the Garden. Their community was built around a huge garden in the shape of a spiral. Work had begun on this garden in the First Generation under the guidance of U’Jzur, Twilit Chandorean, and Al’Rosal, Daylit Deklamohedrin. Their Septs had acquired 40 acres of land along the Grand River in Ontario Province, Canada (which the Wanderer children playfully referred to as Canadia). The land was heavily wooded, and the Wanderers had done nothing to alter this, calling their home The Bush! (The Bush eventually became one of the cornerstones of the Eastern Wild Zone.) The technical wizardry of Al’Rosal and the Seven Makers and the dream skills of the Deznahdorean, Kozja combined to create a community perfectly balanced between the needs of the Land and the needs of the Wanderers! They choose to build below ground—heavy earthbanked homes with wind and solar powered generators. They learned to forage off the land, with minimal use of space for gardens, as their Native American forbears had done. And right in the center of the 40 acres they constructed a vast spiral meditation garden, which over time came to be their community’s principle Plaza.

It was to this garden plaza that Cole and Tana wandered, searching for the best way to help E’Lizzia accept and live with the passing of U’Dlyns.

“She dreams her own death, you know,” Tana said, glancing at Cole. He gazed out over the Garden toward the sound of the river cavorting in the distance. It soothed the outer layers of his sorrow….Tana felt its throbbing core deep in the center of Cole’s chest and reached out a tendril of love toward that center….he felt it, looked around suddenly into her eyes, searching….

Tana smiled. He had always been such a sensitive one. “I love you,” she said, simply, then turned and walked further into the Garden. Cole followed, softly comforted in the deep places, places he could not name, only feel. It would perhaps help him sleep that night, and he was grateful.

At just that moment a small shape burst from the heavy grass border….a tiny child no more than four feet tall….his black hair flying back from his eager face. The little projectile aimed himself straight at Cole’s right thigh and affixed himself there with maniacal, six-year old strength, attempting to wrestle Cole to the ground! “Got you!” he yelled. “Arthur, Arthur,” Tana said, “let him go, let him go, we aren’t here to play today…” Arthur had set himself up as guardian of the Spiral and regularly demanded the business of anyone who dared enter his domain. “I’m NOT playing,” Arthur insisted, his little six-year old face stern with authority. “What business have you here!”

“Dreaming pain away,” Tana answered looking deep into Arthur’s wide blue eyes. And it hit Arthur then… “Oh, yeah….ah, sorry Cole, sorry Tana…sorry!” They both hugged him tight. “It is okay, A.” Cole said. “It is okay….” but his voice trailed off. Then Arthur hugged Cole tight. “I loved him too, you know,” Arthur said….

Then Cole sat down on the ground in front of Arthur, who watched quietly, and with deep seriousness, as Cole cried. Then he reached out and stroked Cole’s hands gently, tracing each of his fingers.
It was then Tana had a vision of what they would do to help E’Lizzia, indeed all of them, say goodbye to U’Dlyns.

And this is what they did.

It was dusk. The sunset was cold and crisp. The river sang in the distance, caressing the wind.
The Spiral was lit by many torches, and in the center a huge brazier had been erected where a large bonfire blazed merrily. Here and there throughout the Spiral, hidden in the grass, were those who had loved U’Dlyns and had something to say about it.

Tana and Cole waited at the entrance to the Spiral. U’Dlyns’ Sept approached….E’Lizzia and Jorn of the Deklamohedrin, Katherine, Jana of the Ektazians, Jasper of the Ez Perjezlah and Johnmarro of the Chandoreans. His blood family residing at The Bush came as well…E’Kohna and D’Laura of the Deklamohedrin, Nigel, Maria, and M’arto of the Majz, and Kendra of the Ektazians. Tana and Cole looked deeply into each one, testing them, loving them. All were bowed but receptive, save E’Lizzia whose heart was frozen with sorrow.

Tana placed E’Lizzia at the head of the group and lead her forth into the spiral. They had walked no more than 15 paces when they were stopped by Arthur, shooting out of the grass as he had done with Cole and Tana three days prior. He stopped right in front of E’Lizzia and looked up at her, his elfin face taut, his heart thumping in his eyes. She looked down at him, surprised. He moved forward, gently touched her thigh, and said, “U’Dlyns made this for me when I was five.” He held up a small wooden object with lots of shiny metal protrusions, buttons, and an odd assortment of wires coming out that attached here and there in a very pseudo-techno kind of way. “It is my transdimensional echo-locator with space and time modulator,” Arthur said. “U said it would help me guard the Garden,” he continued. E’Lizzia grinned inspite of her sorrow and took the weird little contraption. She remembered when U’Dlyns had made it….the sun shining on his crooked nose as he grinned, imagining how much fun Arthur would have, aiming it at all and sundry who entered the Garden. Then she looked back down at the little boy. His face was deep and serious. He touched her thigh again and said, “I love you, E’Lizzia.” The ice in her heart cracked. Distractedly, she handed the toy back to the boy….

Cole took her arm and guided her on as Arthur showed his toy to the rest of U’Dlyns’ family, telling tales of his exploits with it in defense of the Garden.

Twenty paces on Korda stepped out of the grass. He was a tall, lanky boy, one of U’Dlyns’ favorite students in Learning. He twisted his long, calloused fingers together and looked at the ground. His emotions were thick, like soft fudge inside. He had a hard time forcing them off his tongue in words…he was so much better with his hands…but he had something to say on this occasion, and he meant to say it.

“E’Liz.. E’Lizzia…E’Lizzia I, I miss him too….”

And that was all he could manage….except for the shaking of his chest, and the wide stare of his eyes, hard with unshed tears.

E’Lizzia broke open a little wider. Three tears escaped along with a long, long breath, held in since U’Dlyns’ passing. She hadn’t realized until just that moment that she had scarcely breathed in five days….

Tana touched her in the center of her back…the touch was warm all along the surface of E’Lizzia’s ache. She let it in a little this time, shaking.
Then she hugged Korda, and they both shook. He turned and walked with her as she moved deeper into the spiral….

…at each turn, another friend, companion, co-worker came out and told her some story of zir life with U’Dlyns and why they loved him, why they loved her and their Sept….

…by the time they reached the great bonfire in the center of the Garden, E’Lizzia was a fountain of tears, flooding out into the love of her Community. Then, they embraced her, one by one, taking great care help her feel why her life still had meaning and a long living place beside the memories of U’Dlyns.

Turning, E’Lizzia looked back over the Spiral Garden spread out around her. In her heart she charted, through the stories of her Community, the course of her life with U’Dlyns. Then she turned and looked deep into Tana’s eyes….and through them, into the Gate of Dreams. She had never charted a course for herself without U’Dlyns. Tana, smiled and said, “Dream now, E’Lizzia, dream with us, the highways and byways of all the rest of your Days.”

Cole said, “No one may walk paths not yet dreamed….dream E’Lizzia, dream!”

Because it was hard for her Deklamohedrin soul to surrender to the wild sands of the Dream path, her Community helped her. The first to stand forth was the tiny Arthur, wee and budding Questling, wee and budding Ez of the Fourth Generation, still wandering in the Days of Freedom.

The Community of The Bush became still with reverence and listened to his request…

“E’Lizzia, walk beside me to the river on the day of my Passage into Learning, harsh taskmistress though you are, I am eager for you to teach me what you know. Because of you, I will know many things, not least, how to get from here to there with steps I can manage, though my legs be short or long.”

“He has listened well,” Tana thought. Again she was amazed at the profound attention, deep comprehension and erudition of even the smallest child.

E’Lizzia saw the future in the wee Arthur’s eyes and walked there awhile with him, feeling the rightness of the journey in her heart, still swollen with grief.

Then Korda stepped up. The Community bowed their heads in respect at his courage to speak aloud in front of all of them. Tremulous, yellow-fairy soul…thick, deep, heavy heart….skilled, swift-moving hands…. ....he was a treasure loved by all.

He looked into E’Lizzia with that deep heart, but said no word. It was unnecessary. Their Deklamohedrin inner lives merged and she saw herself leading him in the Arts of Making, completing the training U’Dlyns had begun…and she was comforted. The spirit of U’Dlyns somewhere far beyond Antares smiled, and she felt it, for a moment. The ache dulled another bit. Soon she would be able to live with it.

One after the other, the rest of her Community stood forth, dreaming their paths beside hers. Last of all came Katherine—proud, calm, silent Katherine. They had shared a love for U’Dlyns that had rocked their bones and made their hearts sing like the eternal springs of effervescent youth ancient mariners had once sought on strange shores, never knowing its source lay within their own hearts. Katherine knew best what it must be like for E’Lizzia to survive U’Dlyns’ passing. She took her Sept-sister’s hands in hers, looked deep in her eyes. E’Lizzia felt them both beside a dying fire, snow outside. They were weaving a blanket, a tapestry blanket with the stories of the lives of their Sept laid out in clear images. The blanket was huge and brightly festooned with many scenes from their lives. They would pass this blanket on to Generations yet unborn.

Then they cried together….their Commuity crowding around, surrounding them in Love.
For the rest of her life, as E’Lizzia walked those dreamed paths into reality among those she loved, she returned always to the Spiral Garden and the memories of that night, letting them guide her through the harsh times without U’Dlyns, until at last, beside the dying fire, she wove peace into the tales of her life.

From that time forward, The Bush Community of Wanderers often used the Spiral in this way, to help their members with Passages of many kinds.