The Flight of an Autumn Sunset [Revised 2010]
March 11, 2015 § Leave a comment
A dream. Reality seems to distort at the edges, with all of the motion-picture special effects I’d expect in the theatres. But I see the movie through my eyes. I scurry through halls of smoke and mirrors, wrestling against psychological sleights of hand. A facemask, a second illusion, places itself over the everyday one I now feel so naturally as my face. I have fallen into a spell-world, full of sorcery and enchantment. And I feel the power of the Druid pulsing in my blood.
Woven into the image I see a tapestry of monolithic green sculptures. With the freedom of silver-winged eagles liberating themselves of the mandates of gravity, I soar skyward, rushing in an overcast sky, one on the verge of nightfall, but still burning with the last lights of the day. I look down upon ruined highways, the forsaken downtowns of metropolises left abandoned, and I glide swiftly past. The buildings appear distraught by neglect and crumbled mercilessly by the hands of time, the hands of Gaia – that maternal emerald goddess. Her vegetation and vinewebs and leaves have devoured the metallic prisons where the graysuited business-slaves once toiled in the name of St. Capital. The world now looks like communities of kudzu vines hugging skyscrapers that never loved them, looks like a daring conspiracy of dandelions, lambsquarters, mullein, thistle, purslane, foxtail, and white clover conspiring to overthrow their black carpet of asphalt oppression.
Even with the autumnal season dancing all around me, with the leaves waltzing in the winds, the once glorious skyscrapers seem challenged by the radiant verdure of the waning bloom. Gaia, She has returned, with luminous eyes of wrath, filled with the indignation of the degradation of her sacred savannahs, her valiant valleys, her rushing rivers, her mighty mountains, her surging seas, her tireless tundra, her fearless forests. Her wilderness rises feral against the arrogance of Empire. Through the gift of Her immortal seeding, She has reclaimed Her lands, re-establishing a natural order.
I soar along the thermals, as a raptor, burning with motion. At a reckless velocity I blaze through this former cityscape, my wake a vengeful, oceanic maelstrom. The vacuum of my passage draws blossomed flowers, of violets and blues and white, and factory-processed industrial-metallic debris; leaves of the autumn hues: oranges, and reds, and yellow, reflective shards of window-glass shining golden with rainbow fire from the setting sun… My passage consumes the arm-like branches of the creeping olive-colored vines, the vines clutching earthquake-resistance reinforced steel girders. Lethargic, all-consuming blankets of moss and unfaltering riveted iron construction matter falls in slow motion, burning in the upheaval. All of the materials and technologies, now rent from the edifices and that they once serviced, whirl downward in a death-dance with the plant fibers and biotic networks. The wreckage moves with a frightening pace, but matched by the falling rooftop trees – bricks and beams and boards all coalesce into the storm of willows and cherry trees, apple and pear trees, silk trees, lindens, birches, and maples.
Thunder booms across the stormclouded sky as a symphony of explosive fire-flashes marks the turning. The organic and the synthetic reach a harmony, both bending and burning with my passage, as I rain down a cascade of beautiful destruction – the fracturing, explosive chaos that comes before the renewal. Only in a requiem of annihilation will the machines and the wildness coexist. The rain washes the ash back to slumber, as the metals rust, and the flowers drink. The descending wildfire scorches the wilderness as the infrastructure collapses. But the seeds and the nomads will find new homes and adventures in the wreckage, will build new communities and sing and dance and play together without fear or abuse. The pollen and the spores will openly greet the packs, the flocks, the bands, and the tribes.
Departure – the city laid to waste, not by my meteoric flight, but rather by the hands of the immortal mother of soil working through me (for I serve as Her conduit). I glide ever-forward; the path behind me I see strewn with autumn-burned leaves softly falling, and rainbow-colored storms of butterflies fluttering in the fall. And the office supplies: the staplers and papers and computer screens and vending machines crash thunderously to the earth in a whirlwind. Technics and nature entwine, embracing as affectionately as opposing soldiers locked in a death-grip, falling on their shared field of battle.
This mess spills haphazardly onto the abandoned highways – green, endless roads that reclaimed their wild origins. Laying upon the forgotten superhighways I see jade husks of what appear to have once been cars. The steel-behemoths that rampaged along them hibernate, eternally idle as I float past, dream-like, entranced by the majestic oak forests rising in fury and love, slowly smashing the cars to bits to make room for their children. And with supernaturally long branches, the magnificent Flame Trees, with their red leaves falling in the breeze, and the elegant pink and white cherry blossoms, all dispense a torrent of many colored leaves to cover the grey wastelands.
The dark rotating gears, the sputtering grey engines, their murder dance ceases. The oil-blooded demons, the metallic engines of death, the mechanical reapers, slowly crumble away. The steel-glass-petrol destroyers die their artificial death, breathing their last not-breaths. Exhaust fumes dissipate, bit by bit by bit, and the air smells fresh again. The din that muted the living finally falls again to cricket chirps and the sound of falling rain. Armies of twigs shatter panes of glass, and seeds sail the storming windstreams with tenacity, looking to create wild insurgency. As I pass along this scene, in my last glimpse, I see wildebeasts demolishing shopping malls, wolf packs howling atop mounds of mass-produced electronic distractions, signaling the next wave of Gaian resistance. I hear the songbirds singing a funeral hymn for Empire. The forgotten superhighway, I follow its snake-like bends and curves, and drift off into the sunset. Waves of darkness overtake me again.
I wake up.
But have I lost that Druid’s pulse, or do we choose the masks we wear?
[Note: Originally written in 2008, and revised in 2010. Based on a dream I had, likely inspired by Fight Club and the third Matrix film. Nowadays I would not romanticize druidry or deities, but the heart of the piece remains.]