Waltham, Mandeville Jamaica
As the day said goodbye and darkness came to say hello, the hand of loneliness reached out and touched my heart.
I left the Hermitage and slowly walked to my favourite hill from which I could gaze down upon the city of Mandeville.
There I sat and held counsel with the stars, I marveled at the vastness of space and contemplated upon the galaxies light-years away.
In the middle of my contemplations a swoon came over me and I lost consciousness to time and my spirit was taken into a realm beyond the senses.
There I heard a dialogue between a teen aged youth and his aging father.
“Where have you been my son” asked the old man, the youth replied “I have been following a rainbow which led me to a land of illusion, where I saw people waiting for the light of a paper moon hanging from a painted sky, I saw young maidens weeping for death of their children not yet conceived.
I saw rivers of blood flowing through cities of death, while ten thousand people chanted a freedom song as they tighten the shackles to their fetters.
In a park I saw lovers embracing the ghosts of their dreams, I saw young children swimming in rivers of decadent customs and traditions which led to a sea of darkness, where human infidelity ruled supreme.
I saw world leaders of oppression wearing the garments of law and authority carrying out acts of terror in the name of liberation and freedom.
In the midst of this chaos there came forth a mighty tyrant and he lusted after the spoils of the weaker nations of the world, his arm was long and he waxed great against all nations who would not heed him.”
The youth for a moment was silent, and then he continued, “many more strange things I have seen father, which the tongue cannot utter with clarity, much have I learnt from the things I saw and now life bids me depart for the unknown.”
The youth knelt in prayer for a few moments, then he arose and said “Father long are the years we have spent together, you have been a good father to me, I thank you for all that you have done for me but now the hour has come when I must travel a different path”.
The old man looked at his son but spoke no word as tears flowed from his eyes. “Weep not for me father” said the young man “life is an ever changing drama, all relationships are as evanescent as the dew drops which falls upon the grass in the night time but disperses with the morning and the coming of the sun”.
“Observe my father how the birds care for and nurture their young in the nest until they are able to fly away and fend for themselves”.
“Behold the river which flows through our grove, every day we see this river and it looks the same, but is it my father? To our eyes it seems the same but the water is ever changing, ever it refreshes and re-creates itself, the water in which we bathed yesterday will not be the same water in which we will bathe today of tomorrow.”
“Day succeed night and night succeed day, so the cycle continues, the years of your youth have slipped silently away form you my father, in what seems like but a yesterday, were you not like me, a young man in his prime”.
“When you are challenged by your mortal frailty, do you not wish that you could recall those years of youth to rush to your aid? but alas my father, a thousand times alas, those years are irretrievably gone behind you”.
“You weep for me father because you love me, love is a worthy thing but it should never incarcerate the freedom of our spirits, he who would bind another with the chain of love, is failing to honour the quintessence of life itself, which is “the freedom of the spirit”
The youth paused for a moment and the old man turned his eyes towards the heavens and said “The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh, blessed be the name of the lord, he is the creator of our souls, he leads us through light and darkness, have mercy upon us O Lord.
The Lord is the father of knowledge and wisdom, deliver me from the darkness which the age of ignorance has placed before my eyes”.
The youth embraced his father and said, “May the glory of eternity shine upon you and give you peace”.
He then bowed and slowly walked away, the old man after much contemplation disappeared from view.
I awoke from my swoon and walked back to the Hermitage, where I laid myself down upon my bed to await the loving arms of slumber but slumber was long in coming.
My thoughts wandered back to the youth and the old man, was I not in many ways like that youth who believed in the freedom of the human spirit.
Was I not always running away from those who “love” me, in fear of being consumed by what they call their love?
Was it that I feared the love of others or was it that I did not know how to love others, then I thought of Sari whom I thought I loved, and what she said to me before she departed “When you part form your friend, you grieve not, for that which you love most in him, may be clearer in his absence as the mountain to the climber is clearer from the plain” Kahlil Gibran
Ken George Dill