Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Events of 10/11/10 - 10/14/10 - Chapter 2

October 11, 2010

Susan - I really did try not to step on any manure. Moving my eyes gradually around as my body turned 360 degrees I noticed the leaves on the trees vibrating, almost waving us to come closer or were they warning us to go away! What is this place? ...I noticed a tiny embroidered button stuck to my already mucked up boots. I elevated my foot to grab the small knob with my waterproofed cowhide leather gloves. These were handcrafted by my great grandfather over one hundred years ago. He handed them to me and said I would require them in my future, but he could not tell me when and why. All he said was “Susan, pack them whenever you travel and you must don them when you see red ropes”. That had always been a mystery to me and through the years I often thought him odd as I grinned thinking we are so alike! I examined the button and screamed out to M.T. and W.E. “RIA IS HERE!” This is from the sweater she knitted. I would recognize this anywhere!

October 12, 2010
Mara - A young blue squirrel fidgeting with a paper label, folding, opening and examining it closely.

Young Blue Fidgets - by Mara Thompson

Susan - Looking in horror I could not believe what I saw. Susan yelled, "Stop him Bill, he's eating a map. We are going to be lost forever! Roll him a nut Mara." I threw Ria's button at the blue chattering squirrel to distract him and it knocked the paper out of his mouth. Mara and Bill were frozen and looking up at all the prisms. “Those aren’t prisms, they’re peradams!”, Bill whispered. Then a great booming noise and nuts started to fall from the trees. One hit Bill and he turned. "Why hello there...who are you" he said looking at me bewildered.

William - Wack! Like Newton's apple or the smack of the master's cane waking us from our dozing, the nut to the head caused me to look back at Susan. More over her shoulder, actually. What I saw reflected in the peradams was baffling. "Who are you?"... I'm obviously looking at myself...but not my Self but other selves. The failed or potential... I could not discern. They changed, morphed one from another. A child, a female; young and old. At times bearded and times smooth shaven. An unevenness of dress as well. I arrived here clad in jeans and a chambray work shirt, washed too many times to reveal it's original blue color. But now I (if it was I) am dressed in rags, then fine silks and the skins of long extinct animals. A robe with frayed hem, uniforms cobbled together from the fallen enemies. How did I know they were enemies? I have none. Now. This version. the version I think I am. The visions were benign and frightening by turns or worse when they were bland. People I wanted to meet; people I wanted to cross the street to avoid. (can I avoid my Self?) Can I greet the stranger in me? I heard myself say "Why hello there" and thought it strange that I would greet my Self with the same words I used to greet Mara when she arrived at my door; (only last month?). She unburdened herself of the coils of red climbing rope by dumping them on my floor with little ceremony. I stammered a bit and then to said,
"Why?.....hello there"... Then I added...."I've been expecting you."

Ria - Boy, squirrels run fast. Woohoops, I stopped in my tracks, all of a sudden it went pitch black. Darn, I said to myself, I hate darkness, it makes me feel like I'm dead. And in my coffin. I didn't move, I didn't dare to. So far for my escape, I thought. But, actually, I was too scared to even think. The darkness was thick and compact and seemed to weigh on me ....

Susan - I stared in disbelief at Bill. What is going on here, has he lost his mind? He was focusing way beyond where I was positioned and I was starting to get rattled. Bill’s eyes darted from left to right. His pupils dilated and glimmering as he... was smiling and then scowling over and over again. His mouth was moving but there were no words leaving his lips. I must be deaf from that boom I heard before the nuts rained down. Taking a gulp and holding my breath out of shock I shuffled through the smelly muck with my ruined boots. I inched my way closer to him. He did not even recognize me. He was looking straight through me as if I was imperceptible. I yelled, “Bill, hey you in the loin skin, talk to me!” At that very moment I felt the barrier. I quickly touched as high and low as my arms could span and realized there was an invisible curtain between us. Some obscure squirrel magician was holding Bill in a concealed chamber. I hope he is not headed for the Blues Freak Burlesque Carnival. He would never escape. They would turn him into a contortionist inked full of blue squirrel tattoos. I could see the advertising now. “For only ten nuts witness the one and only BLUE BILL balancing on the tip of an idea”. I started to pound his enclosure with my fists as I fell down to the ground in tears while a giant blue shadow started to roll over us. “ Wake up Bill…wake up before the puzzles begin!” I looked everywhere for Mara but she had vanished.

William - I recalled M.T.'s visit like I was reliving it. There were no peradams and not a squirrel in sight, blue or otherwise. The feeling of being in a bubble was overwhelming. Not the chamber of Blue Squirrels but an icy isolation barrier blocking ...all other sounds, sights and concerns.
I looked at the red rope dumped on the porch floor. "You brought quite a tangle with you. Japanese spider weave; I'm impressed."
She brushed past me and entered the studio. "Thought're making the Useless Tsuff again! That's why you haven't been on the climbs lately.
"Hey this is good Tsuff.. Some of the best I've ever done. This isn't good; it's great." I wasn't mad.. I knew Mara had the same conflicts.
She nodded and surveyed the marionettes, the telescope piece and the pail of water. "I like this last one."
" I've got a leaky roof. Mara, now tell me why now … what's changed?"
William Evertson ?"First off, someone’s at the door."
I didn't hear a thing but I opened it to find S.S. making like a mime.
I looked back at M.T. who smiled and said, "That."

October 13, 2010
Mara - "Whoa!", but the whirling didn't stop. Just when I thought I had it figured, it wasn't.
Images of ancient springs bubbled - the sweetest source that flowed. I couldn't gain my footing for under my feet was a springy surface. At that thought, I fell. Even though I had no idea where I was, I smiled, just a bit... "It's like a trampoline! OK, so nothing to fear here.
I heard crowd noise, or was it white noise that I attempted to mold so I could call it by name? Did I really expect pattern from no pattern, or no pattern within pattern? Or maybe the pattern of no pattern?
With a deep breath, I opened one eye and saw the word "bells" as the cacophony faded. Picking the object up I saw it was a Campbell's Soup label with a simple design on the verso (was it a map?).
"Stop trying to figure it out; there is no solid footing," I thought. Being the only possible to move forward here was to stay down and attempt to roll, I did so.
She rolled until the surface became solid and stopped. A row of Blues stood in an orderly line, if not twitching occasionally. One held out his paw. Slowly, I passed over the little paper as I was in no position to check my pockets. With significant ritual the squirrel smoothed the sheet and handed it back to her. She sat up in surprise and they split in various directions. So the map was back and it brought hope.

Ria - Nothing! A void? My mind was racing ... wondering how kaleidoscopic colors could suddenly go pitch black. Was it Goethe's color theory? I sighed ... I lowered myself, wanting to sit down, to get a firm hold, but as I bent my knees I was propelled ...up .... or down ... or sideways. No idea. No way of finding a direction in this cave. Cave? Strange cave it is ... As I whooshed further, images of past events came to me, how I had read MA, how I had wanted to go on the expedition, how I enjoyed being a part of our team, a tight group, as if we were meant to be on this slope, how I always was carried off by my curiosity, leading to beautiful findings, chasing after squirrels, but also carrying the bumps and bruises of the journey. I felt extremely tired, a heavy fatigue and then darkness loomed over me ... as I sighed again. I thought of what an old Zen master had said 'what will you do when there's nothing to be done?' 'what can I do, I'm flying?' I took a deep breath and let go ... nothing to do but go with it, nothing to do but go with it, nothing to do but go with the flow ...

Ria - All I know is, I smiled. I smiled.

Mara - Perhaps if I do something symbolic the next move would present itself. Looking at the elusive design I sorely missed the others. Maybe I should stop looking, not to stop but to give up but stop to allow.
OK... I'm hungry... feet falling asleep...... a faint breeze passes... ... .... a bell rings somewhere in the distance...
A bell? Campbell? I follow the sound.... walking around a bend and through stalactites, seeing my way by the glow in my hand. The paper label glows, giving just enough light to pick my way. There in front of me is, "Ria is here!", I holler. She gives a start, we both shudder at the relief of finding a spot of familiar again. "Oh Ria, are you all right? We've been searching for you. Are you OK? Where are we? Now, where are Susan and Bill? Look at this map, what can you make of it? When did you eat last? Are you thirsty? " At the last question she said, "I am, and I smell water".

Ria - When I opened my eyes, I saw M.T. standing there, just in front of me ... I felt as if I woke up from a long dream.... Still bewildered. Smiling big. I registered she asked whether I was hungry or thirsty. I felt I'd been away for a split second, and aged an eon, but her reaction made me think different. I took the map she was holding out to me, surprised I could still think so concretely... as I looked at it my body seemed to react ... a physical sensation of recognition. I thought, I've just been there. I turned to look for traces of the entrance, but nothing was there ... I heard me say "I am, and I smell water," and "a discontinuity in our reality ..."

Susan - I banged and banged into thin air. I decided to walk around on the quagmire to determine its diameter and perhaps find a clue. The transparent obstruction seemed to go on forever in depth. All of a sudden a blue nut hit me on the head but... of course bounced off my head of golden curls. My brave great grandfather was very proud of his own locks and had said that on more than one occasion, his long russet ringlets had protected him from harm when he was in fighting against the Reds. This talent was gifted to our family and handed down through generations when my ancestors were conjuring with Merlin. I looked down on the soil and found the nut glowing and radiating in rapid revolutions. A burst of brilliant lights pulsated around me. The nut commenced to expand and before my eyes grew to be larger than I. The manifestation placed itself directly and securely in front of “Bill the Illusionist”. Letters started etching one by one on the front of this breathing organism, embossing each image from the colored air before me. The words started to take shape. Written was “Ring the door bell you Ding-dong”. I searched the surface with my hands and felt something. Slowly my eyes focused onto the most elaborate and beautiful bronze bell shaped squirrel face and pressed it. “ I heard a sharp, metallic-sounding chirp and drifted through the laughter.

William - Tsuff indeed… This mime routine was a bit much… even for Susan. Because in fact it seemed like months since I had seen her last. Mara was laughing at her antics as Susan paced and felt the air in front of her and at one point falling to the floor and sobbing.
I suspected Mara had something to do with this and I glared.
"All right, enough, what do you want me to do?"
"Invite Susan in, to start."
Although Mara was still choking back laughter I tried to keep a straight face and in my best stage whisper announced, "Ding dong. Ring the damn bell".
To my surprise Susan grabbed the antique bell; yanked it out of the frame and walked in.
(* note to the continuity editor - I am assuming that this action is happening simultaneous with Mara's discovery of Ria.*)

Mara - Miss continuity? "Sometimes yes and sometimes no".

William - Oh crap! Susan!! I cried out. What's with you? I don't hear from you in months then you show up and rip my doorbell off the side of the studio. And why are you wearing those ridiculous boots?"
Susan looks down and her eyes go wide at the sight of the blue fur covered cowboy boots she has on.
"They're freaking blue!!" "Bloody Hell" she screams. She looks up and seems to see MT for the first time.

Ria - "Well," I answered, "it just might be key to reading this map."

Blue marvels at the craftsmanship - Susan Shulman

William - Meanwhile perched on top of his favorite peradam, Blue was examining his feet and marveling at the craftsmanship in the red cowboy boots he had on. He slowly rubbed his forepaws over the soft leather and hummed.

Mara Thompson - "Ria?" "Yes?" with an arch in her brow. "Will you sing me a tune?" She did and as the notes collected I gathered some and sipped the rejuvenating air. "Thanks. Hey, Ria, I have a map." She looked up, "Let me see it." After examining it for several breaths she said decidedly, "When I had it the back was blank. And I got it from a squirrel, which means this is a map from a squirrel! And this glove, where it came from I can't tell you."

Mulka Miracle (VS) from William Evertson on Vimeo.

The origin of the Mulka Celebration. A tale from Analogue Narratives, possibly the sequel to Mount Analogue.

October 14, 2010
Susan - It’s not possible. Did you do this Mara? Is this a practical joke you and Buffalo Bill conjured up? As I bent down to inspect my altered boots more closely I started to stroke the blue plush fur. It was so silky and soft. I had to admit it was quite luxurious. So that is what squirrel pelt feels like. No, no…it must be faux fur. I quickly turned towards Mara in a calm and relaxed mood, as I seem to have been mesmerized by touching my new stylish blue mukluks. “ Mara, how did you get here? I have been searching for days to find you both!” I then realized the images before me were not they but a life-size black and white cutout of Bill and Mara dry mounted on a cardboard easel. They were not even there. I saw miniature hand squirrel puppets hanging on a red clothesline across Bill’s intricately interlaced green painted veranda made from hemp. They were silently swinging and swaying in the wind. Burmese gongs were vibrating in the background. One, two, three, four and then the clothesline went flying into the air. Someone was really messing with my head now!

William - Ria takes a renewed interest in the glove as Mara looks on. She stares off, somewhat perplexed.
"They usually travel in pairs," MT sips another note and adds; "they mate for life, you know"
Ria continues her musing; "The saddest thing is when they are separated; the longing and their feelings of incompleteness. Back in Belgium there are gloves made especially for folding origami. They are very high tech, using the latest in intelligent silicon encased in carbon fiber. Belgians find them to be a great labor savings. We actually have banks where people can earn interest on the savings. This one seem very similar in design although it has quite a different hand"

Squirrel Origami

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