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Archive for August, 2013

I am posting this because the writer of it felt it not worthy.

She seemed to feel that it was not up to the usual standard, but then, I don’t tend to subscribe to everyones thoughts, after all, if I did then I would just be the same as many others.

I hope you enjoy and that you too can be the child forever.

Langley Porter.

 

Be the Child Forever –

 

Be the Child forever and never let him go,

Let him learn the lessons that he truly needs to know.

Let him fly a dragonfly kite on a windy day;

Let him always speak his mind and I will heed what he will say.

 

Be the Child forever with a never-ending smile,

Even if he has to be the Grown Up for a while.

Let his wisdom surface to teach those who need to know;

Be the Child forever and never let him go.

 

Be the Child forever for the joy that he can bring,

Running barefoot over sand and dancing in the spring,

Let the stars within his eyes twinkle forevermore,

Be the Child forever, Friend, and never let him go.

 

AD.

 

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Is it the blackness of the night,

And what we cannot see that scares us?

Is it the dreams we dread as nightmares,

As they fill our minds in times we sleep?

 

As we look into the cold night sky,

Do the stars familiar give us comfort?

Or do we wonder what suspends them,

As one by one they fall so free and bright.

 

As you wake from sleepless slumber,

With the echoed thoughts of the unknown.

Can you turn your mind to understand,

Is it really all so hard for you to see?

 

The candle light and bright of life,

Always shines so strong to guide the way.

In its glow the misty haunted atmosphere,

Will slowly drift and fade as forms appear.

 

Is time just an illusion laid before us,

On a path where the future has been played?

Do we write the stories that will all unfold,

Each and every step we take along the way?

 

Clasp all you know and dare in tiny palms,

Remember all that matters all so true.

The strength of you believing in yourself,

Is the only thing you really need to do.

 

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She lay sleeping, her dreams carrying her from scenario to scenario, at times in a nightmarish form with faceless people barking instructions and demands without any thought of what was humanly possible. With all its wonder, the world had become a confusing mess and once again she had been torn here and there by those that knew her and had wished for the best. She had sought opinions from many, and each time the same sounds reverberated but still gave no comfort, and even if they did, they offered no answers to the complex questions that now posed themselves each and every way she looked.

Whilst she slept the deepest slumber, a small boy walked the darkened path that she had feared to tread earlier. In his hand he held a lantern that burnt soft, with the warming glow lighting his face in a ghostly way. The yellow tones flickered as the flame danced precariously on the end of the wick, at times threatening to leap away, but at the last minute taking hold once more. He was just a distant form and the path he trod had become brighter for all that he had done, yet it had been made no clearer. His hands were small and within them he held the clues to the answers of many questions, with the words he scrawled upon the coarse textured paper joined to make sentences, then paragraphs and finally stories that offered some sort of dim hope where before no hope existed.

He had heard the gentle sobbing earlier in the evening and in the silhouette of a tall tree he had stood, contemplating the many thoughts that flooded into his mind. He had looked deep into the starry sky and marveled at what was unknown, at the same time seeing all that the child could see, the shapes that had become amazing visions that only a child’s mind could form. At the same time he had realized that what the child saw was only a glimpse of what once was, and that now the reality of what was needed would challenge everything that she had ever known. In the distance the sobbing had subsided, replaced by the gentle breaths of a sleeping child with the intermittent murmur as she battled the dreams that played in her tired mind.

As the lantern illuminated the path before him, the darkness filled in each of the footsteps that he had already taken, so that what was ahead was all that was really clear, and even then for only a short distance. He knew this was much like what confronted his friend, and he also knew that it was much of what he had faced for a long while now. This gave him a different perspective on much, but then the child in him still believed and held onto that belief as if it were the air that kept him alive. He stopped momentarily mid way along the path, and he lowered the lantern for a moment. He looked once more to his beloved night sky and all the stars that smiled upon him, and as he heard the laughter from above he realized that no matter what, they would always be there, and that regardless of what lay before him, the child would still always be able to reach for his dreams if he should so choose.

He turned to where he had come from, and he raised the lantern, and in doing so he realized that in the darkness the path looked much the same in either direction, but the difference was he knew what lay behind him, because he had been there already. He turned once more to where the forest lay and he continued, with the softness of the daisies that lined the path melting like a watercolor bathed in the ethereal glow. He reached where the small girl lay, curled up with the remnants of a tiny tear still on her cheek. He thought about the things that had crossed his mind in the short time since he had left the security of the Tree. Then he reached into his coat pockets with his tiny hand and within it he held those simple words that would become sentences, then paragraphs. He held the lantern above her so that the life-giving glow would warm her, and then he carefully sprinkled the magic of the words upon her. She stirred slightly, but did not wake and as the morning light began to paint the sky with the wonderful colors that brought life and clarity to the land, he disappeared into the night sky, now joining the stars, laughing and smiling as he would for evermore.

She woke from the strangest of dreams, and as she did, she thought for just a moment that she could hear familiar laughter. She looked into the sky just in time to see the final blink of the brightest star she had ever seen, just before it disappeared into the soft hues of pinks and reds that now filled the sky. As she sat there, staring down the path, she could see the silhouette of her favorite tall tree bathed in the wondrous colors, silently waiting. She remembered the night before, and the fear that gripped her, the confusion that had consumed her into a desperate tear filled slumber, yet now it was clearer. She remembered a dream, so vivid it was almost real. The familiar flash of blue bathed in light, like a dream she had had so many times before.

The sweet sounds of birds singing reminded her that she was alive, and that she had been given a chance, maybe for one last time. She remembered her nightmare, at the same time remembering how it had stopped suddenly and how it was then that words began to form in her mind. Now one by one those words fell into place, and as she listened the story they told gave her hope, gave her strength, and the courage to believe.

The future is in our hands, guided by the wisdom of all we learn on the roads we travel. You know above all else where it is you have been for you have seen that clearly, and the question you need to ask yourself now is are you truly prepared to leave that behind, so that it never ever consumes you again. The path you now travel may be daunting, but the person you are knows without a shadow of doubt what it is that you must do. If you take control and be true to who you are, you will navigate the challenges that you now face, and you will be who you need to be. If however you succumb to the temptations that have riddled your past, then the darkness will wrap you forever more and as quickly as you go, you will be forgotten.

She thought carefully about the words and she believed that she understood their meaning. As she sat there in reflection, some final words played within her mind.  The path ahead is clear in the light of day, and all we know will be laid out before us on a canvas that was created from the dreams of one. Times will come and go, like so many things in our lives and in the darkness we may all find fear and confusion once more, but if you look into the night sky you will realize it holds the dreams of a child. You must know that through those dreams you can believe, and the fears will disappear in the familiar twinkling of the stars with the distant echo of childish laughter.

She looked along the path to where the Friendship Tree stood tall and strong, now clearer in the light of day, and she wondered. It had been a while since she had climbed there as a child, only visiting from time to time to hang the butterflies that had helped her process the many questions that had consumed her over the last months. What is it that she would find there now?

 

On a closing note.

 

A story, ‘The Little Prince,’ speaks of many things and if you have never read it, then it may just benefit you. If you have read it, then do so again. There are lessons of friendships formed and the responsibilities that come with those, and there are lessons that remind us that sometimes we do become so consumed in the matters of consequence that we lose sight of the importance of what life truly is. When you are finished reading it, ask yourself, are you the prince, the fox, the rose or the pilot, or are you one or all of the people that the prince visits on his journey. Most of all, ask yourself, does the child inside you see the elephant, and can you hear my laughter in the stars at night.

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The child was more terrified than she had ever been before. Though to most she had looked like a little princess – and little more than a diminutive damsel in all-consuming distress – she had proved herself a warrior, stronger than any princess could ever dream of being. She had navigated the darkest forest with its coarse, cold blanket of nightmarish shadows and confronted her own death face to face, before defeating it as she had done before. She had not vanquished her formidable foe alone, but had been equipped with arrows of the love and support of the many who had rallied their thoughts around her in some distant world, whispering words of encouragement into the air that somehow reached her ear, filling her soul with strength and light and life. They had hoped and believed, and she had clung to their far-off words and thoughts with all her might, knowing that she must somehow keep herself alive, if only for the sake of those who had made her the object of their worried wishes and desperate prayers.

Slowly, the child had lifted herself from the dank forest floor, running her hands mournfully over the bruises and scratches that covered her arms, leg and shoulders, clawed and torn by the sharp branches of indistinguishable, sinister trees that lined and spread themselves with malice across the forest path, covering it from her view almost completely, causing her to stumble and crash into the jagged bark of their rough trunks. These were nothing like the beloved tree she had known before the darkness had come, the one that reached skywards into the sunshine, beckoning her to flit her way from branch to glorious branch til she landed like a butterfly on the one from which a dazzling mobile of delicious dreams and sugary words fluttered in the magical breeze. That was the tree of Infinite Childhood. These were trees of Inevitable Death. 

And though she knew that death could not be fought forever and she doubted herself for more than a moment, she came to remember with all her heart that she was truly only a child, and that this was not her time to die. Exhausted and broken, she had searched within the curls of rusty brown leaves and found within them an extra drop of strength each day. Some days she could not drink them in at all, her dry throat struggling to swallow anything that might hope to sustain her. Days and weeks passed before finally she had completed her transformation from vanquished victim to pale, frail princess to the triumphant heroine of her own fantastic fairytale where darkness had been defeated once more. Somewhere, in some far off land, those who had hoped and prayed and wished and believed for her recovery sensed her growing strength and rejoiced for her in their streets.

Now the child stood at the final edge of the forest that had threatened to devour her, and nothing in her compelled her to even think of looking back. She only desired to move out and forward, leaving the darkness behind her. But from where she stood now, there was no discernible path to lead her out. The dark, familiar path she had travelled over the past few months seemed to have dissolved entirely beneath her feet, and stretched endlessly before her now was the absolute desolation of unimaginable nothingness. In moments of prior delirium, she had dreamed that at this point clear paths would reveal themselves, presenting brightly-lit choices by which she would navigate herself either back to the life she knew, or onwards in a better direction. But the distant, dimming horizon held no clues how she might traverse the barrenness spread before her. 

And even though the battle had been won, for Death was now banished into the indeterminate future, the future that spanned between this moment and death had become so absolutely unknown, and this frightened the child more than death’s former certainty. She had reached the edge of the path, but her heart was overcome with the fullest fear of the infinite nothing that seemed to lie before her. A brief moment tempted her to take a few short steps back into the forest, which for all its savage darkness offered some familiarity. Instead, because she could not figure out what else she might do, she slid down onto the edge of the darkening path and wept herself into some sort of confused, distracted sleep. In the gurgling mubble of slumber, she dreamed that when she woke, some path might unexpectedly present itself to her in the morning’s gently filtered light. 
 

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He reached into the waste paper basket overflowing with the many crumpled pieces of paper, each one containing the remnants of words that had started to form stories only a short while ago. It was like reaching into a bucket of oversized popcorn, with his tiny fingers struggling take hold of more than a single piece at a time. One by one he removed the scrunched up balls and carefully un-crumpled and straightened them, running the palm of his hand over their surface. ‘No, not that one, nor that one,’ he thought. They were full of words, but not the ones that he would normally write, but then he had just spent the last few months where his focus was off the child that lived so freely inside, instead searching for words of strength, encouragement and believing, words that seemed to hold much more importance at the time of their writing.

Now as he searched, his mind drifted back to the very beginning, where words just seemed to materialize upon the paper, as if magically transformed from his wildest imagination. He was almost ready to give up all hope, when the slightest glimmer, like a distant star hidden deep amongst the other stars in the night sky, caught his eye. He carefully unwrapped it, and as he looked he realised it was not his best, but then he knew he could polish it, ‘just like a thunder egg,’ his friend would say. Yes, this was it, it was how it all began and it was how it needed to be again. As he began to read the words a smile formed on his face, because he could now see what would become.

“The young boy placed his hands on the rough bark of the tree, running his fingers over its surface. He closed his eyes, feeling every single line as he traced the shapes and imagined what it was that they were forming, the familiar shapes and faces that stirred in his mind. He thought how his senses came to life with the sounds that drifted from the distant forest with all the magic that could be found there.”

That was where the words ended, and as he sat in the illumination of the tiny lamp which he imagined was lit by a firefly, he took out a pen and he continued with the unfinished story.

As the boy continued to feel the coarseness of the tree beneath his hands, his thoughts turned into dreams and he imagined he was being carried upon the breeze, floating aimlessly at first before taking the form of a tiny dragonfly with a greater purpose. Following the path lined with daisies soft and pink like a cushion of swaying color, perfumed sweetly to stir the senses even further, he darted here and there as if searching for something. He reached the end, and hovered where the path met the forest, and as he did the soft glow of the firefly lanterns within welcomed him to venture inside. The lights formed a halo that penetrated the canopy of trees as if shielding it in a dome of light. The sweet song sounds of the fairies as they danced and played, with their tiny shadows moving rhythmically against the tree trunks were mesmerizing and this reminded him of the many stories he had told and the many that he longed to tell once more.

The child continued to run his fingers over the knotted wood of the tree trunk, and as he did his vision changed and as it did he found himself sitting quietly in the tree. There he watched as the pink butterfly mobiles, ragged and worn from the harshness they had been subjected to, began to spin, slowly at first then ever faster. The faded colors coming to brilliant life once more and sending out flickering rays of light, which made him smile and he could not help but feel that the journey he had taken had a purpose beyond the imagination that even he could not understand. One by one the butterflies took flight, free now to fly into the dark night sky, reflecting the magic of the stars above. They glistened and they sparkled as their wings fluttered, and he watched as one by one they faded into the dark distance free forever more.

As he sat and stared into the blackness of the night he thought about the words he had written, and he remembered how the words of his friend had drifted softly within the tree. He turned his head and hanging from the strand of pink glittery string like a single Christmas bauble, he saw one last butterfly. It had not left, but yet it was free to do so. He wondered and he held out his hand and it landed on his open palm, where its wings beat soft and slow. He could see the tiny words inscribed, though in the dim light he could not read them, but then maybe he did not need to. Whilst all other butterflies were ephemeral, this one was different, because this one remained as a living reminder of the many things that had been, and were yet to come.

He took his hands from the trunk of the Tree, and as he did the visions faded, and he stood silently waiting once more for his friends to arrive. ‘They would be here soon,’ he thought, and he sat patiently folding a tiny dragonfly that he may share with them when they did arrive.

As he put down the pen, and he read the story that he had just written, he smiled triumphantly. It was not magic like many others he had written before, but he could see his words once more returning. He could feel the child stirring deep inside and he knew that the time would come and soon he would write with the magic that he held so long ago. He carefully folded the piece of paper, and when he was done, he carried it to the waters edge. It was calm and cool with the sun’s light dancing on the surface as if teased by the tiny ripples, with a gentle breeze that blew softly out to sea. It was the perfect day, and as he waded into the cool clear water, he wondered once more? He carefully placed the paper boat on the surface of the water and he watched as it was carried on the current and the breeze. He hoped his friend might find it and that the words would carry her back to the Tree once more, where she would gently tie the smallest of butterflies for the entire world to see.

Only time will tell, but then he had time to wait and he believed.

The magic of words,

From the mind of a child,

From the thoughts that appear,

Imaginations run wild.

All written on paper,

And folded with care,

To sail on an ocean,

With all that waits there.

Words that will tell,

Tales of magic so true,

Words to inspire,

In whatever you do.

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He smiled as his hand swept across the paper with an even stroke, with the pen drawing the last line of intricate detail on the coarse white paper in front of him. He stepped back and admired the many shapes that had been formed, with each one intertwined to weave a delicate web of characters and objects that he had come to know so well. Their starkness spoke of the journey that had been travelled and the unknown roads that had been crossed. Yet he knew that just as with the journey that had been taken, the colors would soon embrace what could be seen and life would come to be what he now knew.

His wrinkled hand with his fingers worn and ragged, like the twigs on some old tree, had turned the pages of a book with a tenderness that only a young child could bring. Carefully he had crafted the many words that had formed in his mind, and in doing so he had brought life where before hope of life was frail. As he turned the pages once more, he recognized that there were stories untold, but he knew as well that they were now for another to carry forward. As he looked into the picture that opened out before him, the children played once more in his mind and the colors that would bring life washed over it. The blue, red and pink tones that he new so well, now reflected in his eyes of blue and the smile on his face was a priceless gift he had been given in return. The laughter and the giggling echoed through his mind, reaching beyond the hidden dimensions that lay between reality and fantasy, where only children and a few brave souls would dare to venture.

As he changed his gaze, he noticed the clouds in the sky were being bathed in the softness of pinks and reds, and as they were, shapes formed of familiar imaginings, shapes that would become another dream. He lowered his gaze once more where his eyes followed the brown earth path that wound into the distance to a cliff top, where the fading sunlight shimmered, bringing his beloved ocean to life. Across that shimmering ocean he could see the flickering of a light, where standing tall on an island the light remained as a beacon of hope for all the lost children, now protected by the lamplighter. All this time as the light from the lighthouse came and went, the soft dancing light of a single lantern burnt strong perched precariously on a stonewall, as if to signify how fragile it still was. This was the light of life itself and as the colors grew, so did the light that it exuded, painting all it touched and protecting it from the dreaded darkness that had been searching in vain for his friend.

Nearby the hard wooden swing, where his two friends had shared the deepest of thoughts, had begun to come to life. As the colors wrapped around the metal chain links, growing slowly up their length, the green leaves with roses blooming here and there took hold. In his mind he could see a small girl in a red dress as she tried with all her strength to throw away the thoughts and fears that had shackled her to the barren ground below. At the same time he smiled as he remembered the shocked ‘no’ that reverberated from the lips of a small girl with pink ribbons in her hair, when a small boy asked, ‘so was it witchcraft?’

Now the color was flowing fast, like the memories that were flooding back, and the forest in the distance came into full view. There the magic was as strong as the creatures that lived within, and they gave thanks for all they had become from a vivid mind, a child’s mind. Still, he knew that there were many more hidden places within the forest to be explored, with many more lessons to be learned. The forest had grown in the last few months, crossing the void that was once a lifeless desert, reaching now to where a single ivory tower, a place of foreboding, stood tall but crumbling as the magic of the forest had begun to grasp its harsh stone white walls.

He followed the path back to where the Tree stood strong, adorned with beautiful butterflies, ladybugs and dragonflies that danced on the breeze reflecting a rainbow of light on those nearby. He looked closely at base of the Tree where the Book Of Dreams, filled with many words, lay open for all with a clear mind to read. The book reminded him also of where it all began, with a little prince, a fox and a Rose, and as he looked around these to came to life. The laughter had grown louder, and the sounds of the children playing, mixed with the gentle roar of the ocean reminded him once more of how important it was to believe. So with that he placed one last paper boat on the ocean, sending thanks to all who have chosen to believe and have embraced the thoughts and dreams he has shared.

A flash caught his eye, and he glimpsed of the remnants of a shooting star, making one final wish. Often he would look into the sky, and from it he would take the fading life of a shooting star and give hope where hope did not exist, casting a simple wish that would give courage and believing. Some would mock him for such imaginative thoughts, but he did not falter in his resolve and stood steadfast in all he believed, and for what it was worth he would continue to believe that there is magic in ones mind that spans all known realms. As he watched the stars twinkle, he could hear children’s laughter echoing from the depths of space, and he knew that one day he too would laugh as they do, a shining light for all to see.

He turned his back on the picture that had been completed, now full of color and life, with the memories locked in place for all time. This would remain forever a testament of a child’s mind and now all those that read his words could see the visions he saw so freely flowing from his mind.

Friendship Tree High Resolution Photo to be converted-2

 

The above image was painted on commission by artist Jenni Ivins. It contains many elements of the stories posted on the blog, plus elements that are found in the story, The Little Prince.

 

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Today a final paper boat came sailing on the sea,

It carried some ones hopes and dreams and wishes that would be.

It was sprinkled in some magic on a day not long ago,

Then set to sail upon the sea looking for the answers yet unknown.

 

It rode the roughest seas it could but never faltered there,

The storms it saw would stop so many but this one did not care.

It stood as strong as any could believing every word,

Written on one paper boat that one-day would be heard.

 

So today I take this paper boat and hold it in my hands,

Unfolded there in front of me a boy not an old man.

I read the words all written on its paper worn and white,

It says I need you to believe, I guess you got it right.

 

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