In the Ending is the Beginning
My story begins with the Sea.
I know. Some there are who say it ended there, ended in the
division of a curtain of grey rain, ended in a Road which could no
longer curve but must perforce run straight.
Understand: I saw it. There, in the house of Iarwain (he
that is named 'Eldest') between a night of chiming crystal-dreams and a
morn of butter-soft sun, it was gifted me. And, thereafter, no
matter the road, nor the swell of seasons, nor the plain or gilded push
of life against me, no matter, She was there, her waves, her voice like tender roots twining to
my heart, whispering 'peace' and a
promise thereof when there was naught left to me (of me) save
Do not mistake me. She was but a fragment of my Road, the
beginning and the end of it, but never all.
Sam. The more (and
here, I must, in remembrance, smile, at that ‘more’) goodly portion of my
Road, as constant and enduring as the other, like to rich-delved solid
earth himself, the touch-stone of all that might grow and struggle
beneath the Sun.
Even to speak his name, in this far-off place, is to see and be Home. Almost like a dream,
it all is to me now, a dream of darkness absolute, a dream of
calm blue depths, a dream of a voice (quiet with insistence)
calling me back from the doorways of night. He it was held me to
hope, at the last, a stubborn determination to go on until the body
simply surrendered its will, its breath, its......life.
I did not. Surrender. Oh, I did not surrender to It.
And when and where his voice ended, Hers began, sighing and singing to
me as I was granted (or so I supposed) passage to where the depthless
heart of her lay. In Her song was the music of the First Day. And
I listened until the rush of the wind became one with the tapestry of
Her song, twining about the broken threads of me until I knew no
Against all thought, against all wanting or not wanting, I woke, but
not to peace. The very sunlight was tainted gold, the very wind
whispered in foul tongues I could not silence. My heart beat
still, my lungs filled and emptied, my voice......
as if it were someone else speaking,
I heard myself laughing in the vast, empty chamber of the world....
Never, never could I go Home. The voices whispered it, spectral,
persistent as snow-fingered wind. Never. Something
broke within me then, something which had not been suborned by the
Mountain, something which had lived on the edge of a dulled and
Never. In sorrow, I knew just
how long that should be.
Yet, where else, in all the wide World, should I go? I
composed myself, took counsel, journeyed……..home.
And, oh, the sun rising and pulling mist-ghosts from fields still
sleeping in chill dawn, and the deep ancient green of the Brandywine as
we crossed the bridge.....
They spoke to my heart in ways which nothing else might. I began
to have hope that it might be enough, this home-coming, that these
familiar sights, sounds....places
might, in time, replace the despair that too frequently claimed
The more filled with them, by them, I became, the more my heart
quietened. The more my eyes took in, the less they saw. And the
silence within grew until it had a sound of its own.
And, over it all, through it
all, the voice of the Sea, the touch of it upon my cheek in dreams, the
imagined smell of it tucked within an errant wind, the endless blue of
it stretching towards an unseen shore......
the swift sunrise of my long-ago vision, stealing with soft promise
upon hills minted new with sweet grass ….
with the Sea.