“Plant a stone in a field.
Any stone in any field.
And watch it grow…”
Incongruous in Yorkshire stone and sleepy market town
Where unexpected masterwork still wears His thorny crown
Where history, both false and true, unfolds upon the walls
And legend, faith and memory adorn its hallowed halls.
For slaves and saints remembered and a wordless story told
Of dragon-slaying warriors and courtly knights of old,
Must tell the myth that captures hearts and comforts bended knee
Creating visions of what was and what the world could be
If those who owe allegiance to the earthly rule of man
Can look past duty’s confines to a world where faith began.
Beck ‘n’ Call
With spine to earth, She watches as eternities pass by
Marked by the dreams of seekers sleeping ‘neath a starry sky
Held deep within the womb of She whose body forms the ring,
Warm flesh melds with cold stone to learn what visions night may bring.
Upon the mound and deep within the Old Ones shape the night
And guide the questing steps of those who bear the gift of Sight,
With eons marked in ancient stone, the seasons take no heed
Of painted bones whose guardians protect the portal’s need
From seekers old and new whose feet still walk upon the green
To wonder at the face of time and learn what it may mean.
Beck ‘n’ Call
In truth, it is certain and without doubt that whatever is above tends toward that which is below and whatever is below tends toward that which is above for the accomplishment of the One Perfected Thing.
As all things are discovered by one, alone through contemplation so all things are born from this one, alone by permutation: its Father is the Sun, its Mother is the Moon, the Wind bears it in its Belly, the Earth nurtures it in its Heart; Power of all powers it contains the subtle and penetrates the solid and is the progenitor of all wonder in the world yet its efficacy is only perfected through embodiment.
In order that the little world may be re-created in the image of the great world the Spirit must be separated from the Body gradually by the regulated heat of a gentle flame: it rises to heaven from earth and falls back to earth from heaven and thus it acquires the inferior and superior powers for the glory of the whole world and the dissipation of all darkness…
This is the Way of Perfection…
I alone transmit this threefold wisdom which is why I am called The Thrice Raised Hermes.
– The Emerald Tablet
One is All…
In Alchemy there are no short cuts.
Many are those who have spent a life-time seeking its treasure in vain.
On the other hand, everything it promises to reveal is freely given at the outset.
One need only attend properly to its stories and dictates to succeed in the quest…
THE TREASURE OF ALEXANDER
In my native land where I was an orphan there stood a stone statue upon a golden column on which was written:
‘Behold! I am Hermes, he who is three-fold in Wisdom. I once placed marvelous signs openly before all eyes; but now I have veiled them by my wisdom so that none should attain them unless he be a sage like my good self…’
On the breast of the statue one could read:
‘Let him who would learn and know the secrets of creation and of nature look beneath my foot.’
I reflected on what this might mean and started to dig beneath the plinth…
Before long I came to a dark underground chamber in which winds arose and blew without ceasing.
I could go no further.
Exhausted by my toil and full of chagrin at my failure I sat down to rest and immediately fell asleep.
It was then that an old man appeared, resembling myself in build and appearance.
‘Arise and enter into this chamber so as to obtain a representation of nature!’ He said.
‘I cannot,’ I replied, ‘for I can see nothing in the darkness, and the winds that blow there will put out every torch flame.’
‘Then why don’t you put your light into a glass vessel…’ He said.
I immediately awoke, set a light inside a glass, as instructed, and entered the chamber.
There before me sat an Ancient Man on a Golden Throne, holding in his hand an Emerald Tablet on which was written:
‘This is the secret of the world and nature… the knowledge of creation and the cause of all things’…
Could anything be clearer or simultaneously more obscure?
How many Fairy Tales commence with a ‘Native Orphan’ who ends by first recognising and finally realising their ‘High Estate’?
And what should be made of our immobile Stone Figure which stands upon Gold?
He is a God, no less, yet he points not at heaven above but below to the earth.
Or of the Old One who appears in dream as our ‘bodily’ twin?
Nature’s representative advises we still the flickering, buffeted flame of our minds eye in order to see…
Deep in the Dark of our Earth the enthroned kin who holds…
A Jewel in the Crown…
…”I don’t get it.”
“In Geometry, before one can draw a human eye, one has to draw a cat’s eye.”
“I still don’t get it.”
“It’s a process.”
“And in any process things have to happen in a certain order…”
“You said that without using your brain.”
“…First one thing, and then another.”
“But what thing and what other?”
“Ah ha! In this case, Night and Day.”
“Cat’s-Eye and Human Eye!”
“There’s more to it than that though.”
“In what sense more?”
“In a magical sense.”
“Well, it would have to be, very old magic.”
…It happened that one day Pryderi’s doorkeeper, Conan Duffy,
was sunning himself at the portal, along with his cat,
and he saw two beautiful youths
heading towards him over the game plain…
…When they reached the enrtrance to the Dun
the two youths saluted him, and he saluted them back.
“And who might you be?” Said Conan looking the
two of them up and down, “and what is your business?”
“Why, I might be Maech,” said one of them.
“And I might be Amech,” said the other, and she smiled…
Just then a loud groan issued from the fair mound, it was
Pryderi, Lord of Underhill, at pains with his arm again.
“…And we are both physicians,” said Maech and he smiled too.
“Well, if you are both physicians,” said Conan, “you’ll have
no problem putting a new eye where my old one used to be,
now will you?”
And he veered up close to show them his scar.
Amech looked at the cat sunning itself by Conan’s side and said,
“we could put one of the eyes from that there cat, where your old eye used to be.”
“You could?” asked Conan.
“We could,” said Maech and with that the two of them swiftly
seized the cat, which is no easy thing if a cat does not want to
be siezed, and they did what had to be done, until one of the cat’s
eyes sat, as pretty as you please, in the head of Conan Duffy.
Conan blinked increduously and ran off into the fair mound…
“And the Geometry?”
“For the Geometry, you’ll just have to wait.”
SPOILS OF THE ABYSS
When Pryderi, Lord of Underhill, was treated for the
injury done to his arm by Tyrnonos, Thunder-of-Water,
his leech, Nudd, found that he was unable to save the limb; so
he hacked it down to a stump and put a silver hand on Pryderi which
was so cunningly crafted that it had all the movement of a natural hand.
Yet still Pryderi had no end of pain and trouble with the arm
and he was forever lying sick in his bed from the grief of it…
“Not a particularly auspicious start, and no sign of our ‘Eye-Guy’.”
“Give it time.” …
“Did they have ‘bionic’ hands in those days then?”
“A ha… I don’t know, did they have ‘bionic’ hands in those days?”
“I think not.”
“We are dealing with the Crafty Folk here, remember?”
“I still think not.”
“So, to what can the silver hand or arm refer?”
“It would be useful to know which we are dealing with, actually.”
“Some sources specify hand, some specify arm, and this lack of precision may itself be the clue to our non literal interpretation. You’d think they’d know!”
“Let’s settle on limb, then. To what can the silver-limb refer?”
“If it’s silver it could have something to do with the moon?”
“I think that’s a very auspicious start.”
“Or a tree?”
“Even better, what sort of tree?”
“A birch tree.”
“Now, I know that is an incredibly auspicious start.”
I, alone with White Feline
Each of us, one of a kind…
Her’s a mind on hunting, set
Mine is for my pet subject…
What a curious thing, to see
Kept at task, so still, are we…
She with eye pressed to a nook
My nose buried in some book…
Housed together, we sit and find
Grand enchantments for our mind…
When a mouse peeks from its den
Sly and swift is Feline, then…
I seek wisdom day and night
Stalking darkness thro’ to light…
So, in peace our trades we ply
White Feline, the cat, and I…
Daily practice, patience played
Feline is perfect in her trade…
To draw the sense from wisdoms, high
My feeble wits, I am wont to try…