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The River

I watched the river closely.

While it always followed the same path

On its way to meet the sea,

You could never say it was the same river

You looked at only moments ago.

The water had moved on and

There was always a random pattern

To its surface as it passed by the bank and over the rocks.

Nothing repeated, all was change.

Each second another event,

A constant state of flux.

Looking on, I suddenly felt heavy

And inert and I told myself

I must learn from the river and flow.

Thoughts meandered through my head

Like cigarette smoke caught in sunlight,

Insubstantial and lost to the air.

The river was calling.

I rose up and began to wade into the water.

The current was strong and I felt the power

As it carried me off my feet,

And so I floated, cradled by its might

And I heard a voice saying “come with me,

I have something show you”.

The voice was not mine,

The thoughts were not mine

For I had left thinking on the river bank.

All things in this world talk,

But one must listen carefully as some only whisper.

I was not curious about the promised revelation the river had made.

I trusted implicitly and replied “so it must be”.

Presently the river took me by a dense forest.

One tree stood out, some of its roots

Exposed by the very action of the flowing river,

Undermining its grasp of the world.

The wind caused its leaves to flutter

And I heard it whisper and

I found myself standing before it.

It was massive and ancient and I felt humbled.

“Get up off your knees, your piety does not cut it with me”

The tree said angrily, then added,

Quite gently “how can I help you?”

“I am  looking for something tree”

“Well,. aren’t we all, not bad,. a legitimate  enquiry,

But it has dangers”.

He fell silent.

The wind gathered up and he spoke again.

“ The river comes to a fork,

It is very important you listen carefully now.

One way leads to oblivion, the other,

Peace and happiness.

The big deal here is you may not know which to take.

The river will not guide you. So you must prepare”.

I cannot tarry here,

There are creatures

Requiring my attention.

Yes, the forest is generous

Shelter for many

Even shade for the axeman

Who would fell me Be on your way

Talk to the fox

He harbours nearby

But remember, he is sly

I walked through the woods

Then I saw him.

Forgive me friend.

I saw you first

State your business

I seek some wisdom

White bibed, rusty coat

But his eyes reflected moonlight

Surely, Surely I had found a similar kind

Oh yes, we are not too different

You live on instinct I do too

But mine are better honed

More refined, if you will

Do I spill the beans

Chased by dogs, men on horses

They wear red coats

Whats that about Look,

I say stay alert You are not hunted

Like I

You call it a sport

Nothing of the sort

Don’t hang your head in shame

I forgive the blame

You feel

The fox passed by.

His parting shot

“Talk to the rabbit”

“And where is he?”

Forget that

He will find you

Like I did

With that he was gone

So I walked on

Deeper and deeper

The trees folded in on me

Darkness reigned

The cold chilled my bones

Then he was there

Like that creature

In the donie darko movie

“That’s some fucking rabbit”

“Do you always resort to profanity”?

“Only when scared” I dared to say

Come closer child

The wood is dark

Did you loose your way?

I suspect I did

Don’t live in fear

Look through the mirror

I have one here What do you see?

I am a rat, treated as vermin

No ermine coat here

Speak with the cat

He is pleasurable

And pleasure seeking

But I tell you this

He can kill

Not for any reward

Just coz he can

He walked by

I gave a sigh of relief

“You are beautiful”

He said, “I know”

Is the arrogance misplaced

Stroke me, see for yourself

That’s wonderful

All is prophesy said the rat

Meaning what?

You are not the one

Explain If you don’t see it

Be gone!

I told you want to hear

What you must do is listen

The finality of his words were clear

I could not see tomorrow

Let alone predict, a tear splashed

Get a grip boy, blubbing means nothing here

The fur you have is most enticing

Your eyes, so large and engaging

Did you see my claws?

No I said I keep them hidden

Unless, of course, you threaten

Why would I do that?

He laughed

You would be surprised

Talk to the woman

She can tell you more

I gave the cat one last stroke

Said I loved him

He replied, I know

I could not believe the arrogance of the bloke

I went in search for her

She appeared

Under mysterious moonlight

Her obvious beauty could stop the heart of any man

Not mine She wore all white

Defining every contour

Her hair was rich and dark

I just wanted to touch

Steady boy, you expect too much

But I thought

You thought wrong!

I am not here for your pleasure

The measure of man

Is in his soul and kindness to all creatures

Until you show me that

Keep it in your pants!


Published inAllegories