Magical words and letters and numbers danced on the doorstep. The mailman, once again, with a mystery box of unknown origin, arrived as if his presence was expected.
From under the door came the secret to the solution. He was, I think, an ancient one of many years, soon to be dancing on the darkened oak floor.
The orb was just arising, peeking through the dust-covered windows with a shimmer of light the color of fresh sweet cream butter. So beautiful the glow of the moon this night.
It was my first dance. I stood all alone in the shadows, waiting, watching, soaked with excitement. One by one they came until there were a hundred or more. All sizes, all shapes, none taller than a thin blade of grass waving in the glade beyond the hill under the moon so bright.
The music was beautiful. Light and lively yet mournful and full of sorrow. It bounded from floor to ceiling and wall to wall in varying degrees of crescendo, never-failing to delight those scattered below whirling in the dust of every fallen day. And yet I stayed back, alone in the shadows, wondering when it would be my time to spin and twirl and bounce and thunder. Every bone in my body vibrated with the buzz of bees. Their shimmering wings gave voice to tremendous harmony, never-failing, never-falling, always-calling as they danced their dance before me.
Finally, it was time. Moving from the shadows I saw her, standing alone, hidden in the darkness of the corner of a wall not yet graced with light. Our eyes met and in that moment the music stopped just long enough to let me catch my breath. She was beautiful, this one, this very special one. We stared at each other for the longest time, our wings bent forth as if calling from afar. We spoke, but not with words. We spoke of times past times present and times future. The music played on, the din and racket from hundreds of beating hearts marching time with twice as many dancing feet.
Clothed in his finest, with hat and cane in hand, the ancient one jumped and whirled and twirled. He must have been close to five-hundred. He barely stopped long enough to catch his breath as he sparkled, all of him, with eyes shining bright as if this night, this special night, was the the one night in heaven made just for him. Into the box his hands dipped and played as they came to pay their respects, each receiving a special gift, a remembrance of times past times present times future.
The music played on and on and on. Around the room they drank and laughed and danced and loved in the glow of the sweet cream butter night. The orb crept higher and higher into the sky and still they came, perhaps a thousand or more.
Finally, in the week hours of the darkness, I watched as the dancers’ hair turn from a thousand shades of gray to every color of the rainbow. They stood taller, danced harder, and lifted each other up with arms and shoulders and backs renewed. Each one giving greeting, receiving blessing, and dancing into the dust as their lives were renewed with the gift of life. The bloom had begun!
Over the roar of the pipe and harp and fiddle we spoke, she and I, with words only our ears could imagine.
“Feicim thú…,” I said, my lips moving slowly as no words could speak above the joy of this room filled with so many breathing souls.
I see you…
“Feicim tú ró, mo beloved…,” was the reply, with lifting voice and quivering limb.
I see you too, my beloved…
“Téimid chéile, an oíche…,” I said, bowing every so slightly in the dust from the dervish below.
We go together, this night…
“In onóir na n-amanna atá caite, i láthair, agus sa todhchaí a théann muid le chéile an oíche…,” she replied, as we bowed together, tears descending like warm rain in a summer storm without the favor of an umbrella.
In honor of times past, present, and future we go together this night…
We went, hand in hand, to dance, to limber up stiff limbs and creaky joints. Sweat rolled down our faces as we found our place in line. We bowed, were blessed, and were renewed. The dance continued, the old now young, each given another year to celebrate the harmony of the earth and nature. Finally, toward the dawn of the new day, the box was empty as all had partaken. In ones and twos and threes they drifted off, heading back home, where sleep would come with blissful joy. The annual renewal, the bloom, now complete.
We drifted off, my beloved and I, with the realization that tonight was just the first of many. Once a year we would come to dance in the dust under the light of the orb, to partake in the blessing, to renew.
In that moment times past times present would all but be forgotten. All we could think about was times future and the destiny of our gift… to bring light and life and love to those who surround us.
What higher calling could their be?