Monday, September 11, 2006

Sunday Scribbling--I would never write...

...science fiction-y work. Well, I tried here. Sort of. Note the disclaimers and uncertainity...I must have done the assignment correctly. Hope this makes a little sense, and excuse misspellings and everything else. I am not on my machine, and I had to steal and sneak time in order to do this.
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I write this to glorify the Most High, Most Real Ruler of all Known Glaxaies...the world will sing His name forever and always, and forever we will bow...

The Council instituted that bit above as the official beginning to all of our stories, tales, and correspondence...inspired, no doubt, by the Neuromuses. Everyone wants their words to glow in the dying light like stars. But I don't want to speak that way anymore. And I suppose, I have no reason to. Not that I don't believe--I DO. But I want to speak, plainly, here and now. I want to see if I can share my life tale, one last time, without her--the Neuromuse they call Maia. I won't say I don't wish to speak like that, naturally, without her aid. But I won't say I don't, either.

But I am getting ahead of myself again. This all takes some getting used to.

I was a soldier in the Glorious Revolution, my father and I both. For the years of my youth, we were all muddied together--inter-consorting between the Real and the Unreal was at an all-time high. My father himself...but that is his story to tell. I won't use my time in idle gossip. The Larkians, the stately Ghosts, the lyrical and always-dancing Dryads, all manner of myths and machines...these were as familiar to me as your arms and legs would be to you. We all lived in a certain form of peace...the peace that comes from not-thinking.

But soon, it started to become confusing--who were we, after all, those of us who could proudly say we were Real? What did being Real mean? These creatures lived in our colonias, stood side by side during our festival of Blackened Night. Were we all the same? What if we were as Unreal as they were? If we were all equal, and free, well, then we had to be more so.

These questions grew as whispers, then as fevered letters passed alongside to the other Real, then as shouts, then finally in a series of proclaimations that led to the Glorious Revolution. The War between the Real and Unreal. It was war as prayer, as convultion, clouds of exhaust and exhaustion and rivers of grease and ocean water and blood flowed. The Real would perish with a blood bubble on their lips and a final groan, while the Unreal would destruct with a mighty shake.

This was how you could tell us apart.

My father and I lived, it's true, but not without our own sufferings. Myself, I lost that which men would prize above all things. It is an ache that shadows me truly, but it purifies me--keeps me solid on the clods of earth.

The war ended with the final triumph of the Real, and the Unreal, those still existing, skulked off to I-know-not. New colonias were established, new governments formed, careful to keep our eyes on the eternal gravity of our own being-state--our fingers and toes, what could be seen and discovered with five senses.

I have never cared for the praise songs of other people--I do my duty, only. But my father does not see life as either/or; he grew fat with hosannas, and I do not begrudge him that. He rose swiftly in the new organization, often pulling me alongside. Some would say it was more equal than that--I was known as a fighter, a great sacrificer. I do not say this to brag to you. Only so that you might know who you are dealing with.

I do not know when the Neuromuses returned to our lands. Some say that the Valettians, those great poets of the South, would read tales written during our Co-mingling time and weep at the beauty of it. But I never saw that, myself. Some say that even men, the Most Real, missed the flow of that gentle river, Inspiration. The Neuromuses might return, it was said, if they knew their place as Servers. They could be like medicine, curing even plodding men like myself of dull speech and thought.

But again, I go ahead of myself.

More and more, the authorities of the colonias started speaking in the high tones of those who were consorting with the Neuromuses. Soon, it became more difficult to find one who wasn't. And that one, was usually me. I resisted...after all, hadn't we just fought to liberate ourselevs from all that? My father began to shout at me, to be competitive in this new world, one needed the Neuromuses. He insisted, and I was enough of a son to want to make him happy. With all the new rules, it would only a help, never a danger. As long as I abided by these rules, consorting only at specific times and places, and always with a different Muse. That way you don't get attached.

I tried. I sincerely did. I tried to follow all of the regulations governing Neuromuse/Real relationships. I suppose that should make me feel better, more justified. But, honestly, it doesn't.

At first, it all went well. The Neuromuse came in her guise as Server, and soon I found my pen flowing forth with crystalline, gorgeous prose of the poets. How exactly to explain how it worked? Some men said it was like a visitation in the night, like a Ghost fog showing you as you wished to be, not as you really were. Some said it was like making love to the most delightful woman, and having the words come and come in endless esctacy.

To them, I say--it is both more than this, and simple.

Ideally, the Neuromuse has no will of her own, acting instead as a sort of divine editor--rewriting your mind and pointing you towards higher horizons. I think maybe most of them worked this way. But Maia is not most. Does it matter what she looked like? It was so little of who she was...very well, I will try what was always beyond beyond my power.She was ethereal as thought, familiar as breath. She formed herself not as a small speck of light, as did most, but as a full woman--hair like corals, eyes like wet grass. She would dislike such a plain description, and no doubt she would do a better job with it herself. She was, simply, Maia and could be no one else in all the world.

She came to me, and I could feel her presense right away, as I sat in the posture of receiving--eyes closed, hands at sides, mind blank like a field...waiting for the words to sprout up. Instead, there came a question. "Who are you?"

"I am a solider, a leader of men..." and so I began, waiting for her to move the words and guide them towards magical realms. But instead, another question, impudence really...but I was curious now. "No, who are you, really?"

I expected her to be passive, just decorating my thoughts in her language. But that was not Maia. All I got were arguments, questions, "Are you sure that's what you mean? What about...?" And I'd answer and she'd rebut and we were off. Maybe I should have been angered by this overstepping. But the truth is, no one had ever asked me anything like this before and no one ever cared so passionately what I thought.

And so began our conversation. For, despite what the authorities always said, it was nothing more than conversation. Her presence in my mind became as familiar to me as my own hands...and as necessary. She inspired me in every way a man can be inspired...I was surprised that one like me had such depth, to be honest. I never saw a hint of it before. I was forced to re-examine everything. She claimed I did the same for her, my plain clear ideas igniting all of the scope of her imagination, not as a Server who can only speak in other's thoughts, but as Herself. As someone almost...Real. Our conversations were a different kind of war--one that brought life, not death.

I was no longer the dutiful son of the republic, even as my name grew more known and exalted. I was becoming famed for my oratory throughout the land! It would make you laugh to think of it now. Then again, maybe it would not.

Alas, my new position did not make everyone happy. My father allowed himself to be poisoned against me, and he noted the rules I had broken with a sad triumph. I had consorted with a Neuromuse. I had been seen in her company more than once. I had allowed the strict line between Real and Unreal to be blurred again. I was a menace, and needed to be stopped.

She knew almost before I did, furious speeches full of grand passionate eloquence giving way to promises of how we would spend our lives together, somewhere in I-know-not. She pressed me to be open, to try and change what I had already changed once before. But..could I turn against what I thought I knew, in favor of what I scarcely imagned? I can only be what I am. And I believe in the Glorious Revolution, even as it prepared to take one more gift from me.

Our last night together, we came together as two forms of the Real. She restored to me what the Revolution took. I won't try to describe it, not without her. It was a current, pulling and pushing and endless and circling. She was within me and without me, above and below me. She was me.

I won't say there were no difference between us--but what they were I could no longer tell--not even with her help.

I wanted to hold on to her forever, and am not ashamed to say I wept. But then, with hands that frankly trembled but with steadfast resolve, I did the thing I swore I would not do. Could not do.

I called my father.

Her screams from the room below the guard station were heard throughout the colonia, and dragged like nails across my bruised skin. I knew the punishments that awaited her...I helped draft the treaties, helped create this new world. I can't seem to find the words to describe them, maybe I don't want to. Suffice to say, it was brutal and then she ceased.

Don't believe what the authorities will say about her...that she was a corrupter, using me to plot an overthrow of the colonia, that she was a spy sent from the Unreal. I don't believe it, even if it was once true. We were both doing what we needed to do, and then what we needed to do changed. Maia would have something to say about all, to be sure. Maia always had something to say.

My own punishments seemed but a trifle, in comparison. There would be exile, of course. Sanctions against my estate and my family.

But public outcry rose, and rose, and more people came forth, claiming the Glorious Revolution had robbed them of a life they had once loved. That the Real was a Tyranny, and a small, mean way to live after all. That instead of having the Elite Real and the lowly Servers, we could all commingle as one, once again.

My father knew what he had to do. I know, too. I hear them, downstairs, finally. But I have defied them, after all...my words snake through your mind, don't they? My words, plain as they are, will live on in this story, even as I will not. I have tasted Maia's power--mixed the Real and the Unreal. I, who fought in the Glorious Revolution, have discovered that sometimes the only way to move into a better life is to find your way back to it. And so I say it now, finally. The Unreal taught me that there are always more things than we can see. And those we can see are still more than that. I wish that I had her gift for words--I fear my story will be lost without her eloquence. But I wanted to tell you that she was perhaps more Real than either you, or me. I wish I could have told her.

I do not know whether history will judge my story as an important one--it is just my story after all. But in speaking for myself, I speak for her as well. There are many different kinds of life--and "Real" and "Unreal" are only one of the many ways of dividing them. Maybe not even the most important way.

If anyone asks you to tell them about me--about who I was, make sure to tell them one thing.

I Serve.

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For more things you would never write, go here.

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5 Comments:

Blogger paris parfait said...

Well that's quite a story, for one you'd never want to write! Well done, you! Lots of layers of meaning could be interpreted.

12:49 PM, September 12, 2006  
Blogger Living Part Deux said...

Whoa! Your imagination is limitless - and the fact that you have the words to capture it is INCREDIBLE. Go, go, go. For all us hungry types out here lapping up every morsel.

9:11 AM, September 13, 2006  
Blogger Laini said...

Wow -- what ideas! If you were so inclined the concept of the neuromuses and the whole world you've created would make an awesome sci-fi novel! Did you have fun writing it? Seems like it -- it's very cool. Great job!

10:27 AM, September 13, 2006  
Blogger Catherine said...

I was riveted - this is wonderful, you would make a great science fiction writer. (Sadly, it seems to be thought of as a lower form of writing. I wish it wasn't).

12:55 AM, September 14, 2006  
Anonymous Fern said...

OHH! An entry! How did I miss this? This was such a different type of story for you, but it had that spark and personality that your writing always has. Wonderful and engrossing. Very very cool!

4:08 PM, September 14, 2006  

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