how can i not stop to see you, your hair sparkles like sunshine on clear water. i think i hear you reciting stories of kings and the psalms on your miradors. but i never see your lips move, in the garden of the orange trees.
i was in an oz-cum-middle earth-ian land with a couple of friends and we found the crossing between life and death. it was a magnificent mountainous area covered with coniferous plants. a bridge – in a dull golden colour – laid over a small creek, heading towards a gate made of very tall pines and firs. what was supposed to be the frame was large leafless stumps in the same shade with the bridge.
we had seen some of our other friends banished to the other side by a group of dragoons on black horses. it was our duty to take them back and we knew we would have to arm ourselves before we cross over if we ever wanted to return. we were told that we should discover our weapons if we dug the earth at the flank of the creek. so that was what we did.
in a chronological order, we found a meticulously carved silver dagger, a ragged doll, notebooks that looked like they belonged to an elementary school student and were filled with the owner’s handwriting recording his or her daily pursuits, and finally, a preserved corpse of a girl in a dark blue dress holding another notebook. she looked as if she were sleeping. she looked so peaceful and captivating, like treasure.
we heard sounds from behind the gate and saw three striking women walking down the hills towards the border. we then saw somebody walking through the gate trying to escape but in ways too quick that i can’t recall them now the women caught the poor truant and silence came. the women walked nonchalantly to the bridge and smiled at us. obviously they were showing us the extent of their power.
my house was a shelter to many people of my family and friends as it was also some kind of a vehicle. the world outside was deteriorating and we banded together to protect ourselves from an attack of some invisible power. from the cockpit of the house, we saw trees razing to the ground. the earth shuddered but the house was unwavering and we kept on going. we saw buildings and skyscrapers turn into robots – like voltus! – in movements that reminded me of rubik’s cubes. the skies were almost dark but the edges of those roboscrapers sparkled as if it was daylight. my sister called out she had predicted this would happen.
the full moon
tips of forest
when she falls
in the labyrinth
mist of lullabyes
*Ofelia is the central character in “Pan’s Labyrinth” (2006), played beautifully by Ivana Baquero. The film is written, produced and directed by Guillermo del Toro.
i was walking up this hilly road with my cousin when we passed a gate. the sign said “exit”, but strangely i couldn’t find another gate with the sign “entrance”. this “exit” gate was open and there was a moderate space for parking. beyond that, i saw a small winding road – i couldn’t see where the road is going but one thing for sure it is going downwards. trees and bushes were almost everywhere. it seemed like a proper walking and picnicking area for tourists.
my cousin was trying to tell me a story about the gate and the place behind it but i didn’t listen to her as i saw two of my high school friends inside. R was parking his car and [i-forgot-his-name] was standing and giving instructions. i was excited and R was all smiles but [i-forgot-his-name] had this serious and stern look on his face. i wanted to get in but they told me not to – R with a nice and friendly tone, [i-forgot-his-name] with a deadly one.
my cousin urged me to go on so i told the guys i would meet them again later. my cousin was still telling me the story about the gate and the place behind it – it was supposed to be a chilling one but i couldn’t make out the plot. it seemed as if she was babbling along although she knew i didn’t understand and she also knew that she wasn’t making any sense.
we entered a village – it was so much like collobrières but not as colorful. then, all of a sudden, we heard a commotion from behind us. something awful was happening. we ran back to where we came from, together with most of the villagers.
it was dark. the night had begun to settle in.
we heard piercing shrieks. they came from the behind the gate. there were several people there and all of them were attacked by some invisible entity.
my perspective then shifted into a bird’s-eye-view and shared that of the entity. it was like i was flying along with “it”.
“it” hovered above the village, as slowly and surely as the darkness of the night. lights started to lit up and the bright areas seem to be resistant to the dark. you know immediately that those are the areas where the thing’s power cannot cover.
each one of the villagers seems to be fully aware of the thing’s presence. they know when the thing is so close to their back and then they will walk into a bright spot.
i saw a child crying with horror, his face was staring at me and his eyes were full of fear. but right before the thing could get a grip on him, somebody pulled the child and brought him into light. he was saved.
then i saw an old man sweeping the road with a broomstick. i was getting closer to him but he didn’t bulge an inch. i was getting even closer and i began to feel afraid for him. exactly on the very last moment – i could see the back of his neck very clearly – he stepped into a circle of light on the ground. he turned his head and shot me a defiant look. i rocketed up into the dark sky with the thing.
my perspective changed again. i was back into the story and i was standing in front of an old building. it was built on top of a hill. it was a museum.
i ran into the building. it was pitch black inside. all i could see was the silhouettes of the museum’s collection. i knew the thing was behind me so i ran like hell.
i arrived at the very last room at the very end of the building. i opened the door and i found a bunch of people inside. they were obviously students, listening to their lecturer, who looked like a 30-something woman. one thing for sure, they weren’t from the village because they didn’t seem to realize the importance of having the room fully-lighted after dark.
the thing was still behind me.
i informed them of the danger as quickly as i could and demanded that they turn on the main light. one of the students did but to my dismay, it was a very old lamp. the lights were very dim and it only gave a small and shady circle on the floor.
i told everybody to gather in the circle. it barely fitted us all but it was better than nothing.
i remember one girl was still standing by the window, smoking. she was in the dark. i told her to move into the circle but she told me she didn’t believe that there was such a thing as the thing.
then her cigarette was taken from her fingers by something unseen and the window slammed shut. she ran into the circle and joined us immediately.
i don’t remember much details of what happened next. things happened very quickly and the thing was taunting us badly.
somehow, it let us see its face. it took a mirror and we saw.. a girl’s face.
i don’t know how and why, but she assured me that she wouldn’t hurt me. and this other guy. i don’t remember his face clearly but he was lean and taller than i am.
she asked me to tell everyone in the room to go to the yard outside.
there were a lot of students there. it then occurred to me that they were freshmen on an initiation trip with their seniors. the people who were with me in the room were some of the seniors.
she-thing wanted to play around with those freshers. funny, i could sense, or rather, see where she was in the dark. she let me warn the people and inform them of her position – but if anyone wasn’t quick enough to run from her, he or she would become her prey.
it was a deadly game.
cries filled the night air.
at last, she felt tired. she put her arms on my and the guy’s shoulderd and walked with us.
we were standing in front of a gate. there were still several freshers lingering around. tears and fear decorated their expression.
“i promise i won’t touch you later on if you let me have some more of those freshers without you warning them. now do you let me? remember, if you don’t, there’s no guarantee of your and his safety. plus, you can choose some other people to go with us in the car. they will be safe, too. but, you have to let me do it without you giving any warning.”
i said ok.
i heard some more screams and the freshers who lingered at the gate were crying hysterically.
we drove away.