Saturday, July 16, 2011


Upon our return to the village I was given leave to locate my freinds and play for a time before evening chores and supper. Billaad lived at the northern tip of the main cluster of homes. We had helped his family build their longhouse and had barley finished befoe the last season of white. Billaad's longhouse was much larger than ours. Longer, in fact, than any of the others that had been built so far. I could see Billaad's face in one of them as I approached. It quickly disappeared and by the time I got to the front door, he was there to greet me. "Where have you been? I have been looking for you all day." Billaad was very excited about something as he grabbed my shirt and pulled me through the common area of his house toward the boys' hall. As we passed I saw Tiras sitting in a chair working, very intently, on some small object with his hands. Tiras was my grandfather. He was also Billaad's grandfather. Billaad's mother was my aunt Geolucia. Billaad and I knew very little about Tiras. He was as old as anyone we had ever seen and the only words I had ever heard him speak were 'please' and thank you'; and even then they were almost unrecognizable. My father had explained that it had something to do with the Tower and the language Tiras spoke was of old and only the patriarchs could speak and understand it now. Not even he (Kimmeril) could understand it anymore. In fact, it could not even be learned.

Once inside the boys' hall and safly atop Billaad's bunk and with all the energy his nine year old frame could handle my friend and cousin began to spill forth all the events of his incredible morning. "You are not going to believe me!" he started. And again he said, "There is no way you will believe me." Half ready to outdo any story he could tell with the news of hair clippings and spies from Magog, even if it meant breaking my agreement not to tell, I snapped back with "Try me."

After breakfast I asked my mom if all that stuff about creation, the flood, and God the Guslar said in his stories was true. She said that it was not. She said that people like the Guslar just dream those stories up because it makes them feel better. I asked her how it makes them feel better. She told me they feel bad on account of all the bad stuff that happens to them. She said they need to believe that they have this great protector that brought them here and loves them and is personally looking out for them. I asked her how that made them feel better if this protector really did destroy almost everybody in a flood. She said, awe but he didn't destroy everybody did he? He saved their grandpa, Noah, and his three sons. So to them, he also saved them and loves them as long as they do what he says. She said that it all sounds so nice but it is just a made up story.
Well I said, what really happened then? How did we get here? She said she did not know exactly but pointed at the wall one more time. She said as you can see in the painting all life springs forth from the Mother God that is Gaea (earth). The earth is the source of life, all life, our life. there is nothing personal about it and there is also nothing guaranteed eigther. You can follow all the rules, love with all your heart, hope with all you are and still fall; well die in an accident leaving your family lost and alone. I said you mean like dad? Yes, just like your father. where was this great protector that day as we climbed out of the reveen? I don't know mom. She came to me then and held me, tears in her eyes. I didn't mean to make you sad or try to get you to answer for that accident. What I am trying to tell you is that it is ok that your dad passed on in that way. It is all part of the flow of life streaming through its cycles in and around the mother god earth. He is gone and we will miss him, but we are all one in the energy of life and what he was has already been recycled and living on anew only in different ways.
So will we see him again? No honey but we will be with him as we are with him now, one in the energy that is life coming from and centered in the mother god earth. Well where did the mother god earth come from? She said she did not know. She said the mother god must have come from a chaotic nothingness. She then asked why that is important. She said the earth just came to be; just one more big accident she guessed.

I interrupted Billaad and said "So that is what all these weird paintings you have on the walls of every room in your house are all about?" "I guess so." He replied. "All this time the big fat lady with extra wide hips and gigantic boobs that has all the kinds of animals coming out from her crotch is the mother god earth? That is what your mom is telling you?" I was really being much more insensitive than usual with my tone of voice. "I told you that you would not believe me; and I haven't even told you the most amazing part yet!" Billard was off again.

After our talk I went into the great room to play with Arst. he would tug on that old shirt I have tied up in knots forever if I would only tug back that long. As we wrestled for the shirt grandpa came and sat down next to me, putting his hand on my shoulder. I looked up at him puzzled like and he smiled at me while he rubbed my back. Arst barked a few times before strutting off with the drewl dampened rag. Garndpa's smile, still glowing, was of the kind that can make you warm on the coldest night. Granpa handed me this picture.

Billaad then showed me the picture Tiras had given him. It was easy to see now from where Geolucia had received her artistic talent. The picture was breath taking. It was of a magnificent garden. There were two people, a man and a woman, who were in the garden. They were completely naked, totally relaxed as they strolled the garden eating of its fruit. There was another in the garden; one who shown like the sun. No feature was recognizable in him except this glowing magnificence. There were animals in the garden. All, lion to lamb, were at peace. It was the most tranquil painting I have ever seen. Billaad went on to tell how Tiras had tried to explain the painting. The old man had used hand gestures, body movements, the sparingly few words of our language he could grunt out, together with phrases from his own language when he became frustrated. All my cousin could really gleen form his effort was that the Guslar's stories were true and Tiras knew it from his father Jepheth and his grandfather Noah.

It was painful to watch and listen to our gradfather try to communicate to us. I was always embarrassed for him and believed him to be mentally or physically deficient. It was as though his tongue could not be formed to make the sounds of our language in the required order.

"What did you make of grandpa's utterings?" I asked Billaad. "What can be made of them? I ask you." he replied. "I know my dad believes in the Almighty God of creation; but, I don't know if he takes the Guslar's stories all that seriously." "You should ask him." Billaad exhorted. "I will!"

Just then, the unmistakable sound of Kimmeril's sharp whistle burst penetrated the walls of Billaad's room. "That's my dad. I have to go. See you tomorrow." I said. "Yea, I will tell you about grandpa's model of the boot they used to excape the flood. he is finishing it now." He replied.

No comments: