Monday, July 27, 2015

The Wise Daughter

It is the ninth anniversary of this blog. As is traditional for such milestones I will quote from the first post:
Hopefully, this blog will never have anything of interest in it, and, even if I make a mistake and it does, only three people will ever read it. 
Still works[1]. It's like I plan this stuff! But enough of old posts. Let's get on with something I should have put up last year: a story for creative writing class intended to pay homage to the oral tradition. I call it:

The Wise Daughter
This story is about love and death
(Because all stories are about love and death).
There was a young woman who loved a young man
And the young man loved to explore in the woods
Which as we all know is a foolish thing for a mortal to do.

One day he met a stranger dressed all in black and gold
And he asked the stranger about the tree he sat under
Which had green leaves and white flowers and red fruit
All together on that chill autumn morning.

The stranger smiled and told him not to touch the fruit
(He would not be a stranger here, amongst us, amongst the fey).
Mortals call it Malus fera, the Fairy Apple Tree
And wise ones know not to touch it.
We know it as Bio-tachyon Receptor Construct Class C
And harvest it but once a century.

The young man ignored the warning
Took an apple and ate it and vanished.
Three days later came the young woman
Looking in the woods for her disappeared young man.

She met the stranger (who is not a stranger to you and I)
And asked him had he seen the young man.
“He ate an apple,” she was told.
“Is it forbidden?” she asked.
“It is unwise,” he replied.

He told her what had happened
That a mortal who eats the fruit
Un-diluted, un-processed, un-prepared
Will leave this world and walk the halls of probability
Of what might have been and what never was.
“Will he come back?” she asked.
“It is not impossible,” he replied.

He took her to the pool of viewing
And they looked for him amongst the never-worlds;
He took her to the goblin market
And they bought advice but none that helped;
He took her to the sky harbour tree
And she learned the secrets of air and fire;
But none of this brought her any closer to her young man.

“He may come back, or he may not
But nothing I can do will help or hinder him,” she said.

“Yes,” said the stranger, who is well known to us here.
It was a year and a day since they had met.
The lesson had been long and hard for a mortal.
He considered it time well spent,
For amongst the fey all we have is time
And we are rich with it.

So she went home and all the village celebrated
Her return from the fairyland was unprecedented
And she married and bore a daughter
(Eyes like stars, hair like flame, skin like milky tea)
And seven years to the day she went into the wilds
And found the tree, ate the apple, left behind her child.

Earth has danced with sun a dozen times since that night
And the daughter draws near to our town of tents.
I will tell her the tale – we shall tell her the tale
That much has been foreseen.
Then she will choose to return and live a lifetime with the mortals
Or she will decide to wander eternity with the fey
Or she will take an apple and walk the world as it is not
Or she may die, or flee to the ends of the earth
Or take a brand and burn us all.
We do not know what she will do
For all her decisions are foolish
And all of them are wise.


For anyone who wants to see this taken to pieces and laid out in the workshop there's several things to unpack here.

1. Malus fera, the Fairy Apple Tree is from another piece for the creative writing class, that I thought I'd put up here but apparently haven't. When I get round to it I'll put a link here. Note that is has blossom and fruit simultaneously, which is not a natural state for a tree.

It's other name (oh it has three names? Is that significant?) Bio-tachyon Receptor Construct Class C comes from my idea of elves having lived through many ages, including one when they were scientists with high technology. Although they've stopped doing that, they haven't given up entirely. The sky harbour tree just might be a rocket port.

2. There's some foretelling, and talk of probability and possibilities. These elves are not my regular elves; they're closer to the weird and dangerous personification of the dangers of the wilderness, with some techno-babble stuck on top.

3. Despite that, this is filled with bits from classic stories. I mean the boy eats an apple; a girl goes looking for her mother who is kidnapped by fairies; I keep tripling things up. I almost think of this as a folk-tale remix.

4. Because all stories are about love and death. This isn't literally true[2].

5. And I still love Earth has danced with sun a dozen times since that night. That line alone it makes this post, maybe even the blog worthwhile. Maybe I should reuse it: blog has danced with muse nine times since that day? Maybe not.

Also I wrote and re-wrote that last paragraph - stanza? - many times. It gives me chills to read it. I hope it does you too.

[1] Still overusing commas in the first draft.
[2] For an example on this blog, there's this piece of nonsense that is about hats, port and crime. No death and no love in sight (unless you count love of port. Or hats.)

1 comment:

Steve Finnell said...


Is praying to God a form of worship? Yes, without a doubt. Is praying to men or women who are dead or alive worship? Yes, without a doubt.

Who should men worship? Luke 4:7-8 "Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours." 8 And Jesus answered and said to him, "Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve."(NKJV)


Worship Defined: 1. (Ecclesiastical terms) to show profound religious devotion and respect to; adore or venerate (God or any person or thing considered divine) 2. to be devoted to and full of admiration for. 3. to have or express feelings of profound adoration......7. (Ecclesiastical) the formal expression of religious adoration; rites, prayers, etc. [REF. The Free Dictionary.]

Praying to God is worship and men are to only worship God.

A Costa Rican woman has told how she recovered from a brain aneurysm after praying to Blessed Pope John Paul ll ---the second miracle attributed to the pontiff, who died in 2005. [REF: catholicherald.]

Praying to any man dead or alive is worship and to worship anyone but God is sin.

Through the selfless "yes" of the Virgin Mary, Jesus Christ, our Savior, was brought into the world. It is appropriate, therefore , that we offer prayers of petition and praise to the Mother of God.


Praying to anyone is worship and to worship anyone but God is sin.



Posted by Steve Finnell at 3:52 PM No comments:
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