The Glass Bead Game

28 years ago: Wasdale valley, Cumbria, England. A sunny summer day with 2 friends, sitting looking at Great Gable rising like a pyramid at the head of the valley, the lake water reflecting the sky and a few decorative clouds, the scree slopes opposite in hyper clear detail, the curve of the hills.  Seeing the world so vividly, feeling how alive the earth was, how we were part of the planet, how everything was just as it should be.  Grass so green, looking at rocks like one reads a book, the gentle summer breeze caressing my cheek.  The reducing valve of the mind opened a little more.  Coming home to somewhere we´d never been.

Wasdale wasn’t the only magical time that summer.  Diamonds in the night sky, seen from a friend´s garden in Preston of all places.  Dawn on a sea wall looking out over reclaimed salt marsh, the sunrise feeling like the first morning of creation, warming the earth and giving it life, warming me and giving me life.  Bach as the sound of the universe.  William Blake, Roger Waters, Jim Morrison, Van Gogh, Goya : reports from their travels. Long conversations between friends about Rimbaud, Hesse, Nietzsche, Huxley … naïve young minds struggling beyond their limits, stretched, never to regain their old shape again.

28 years later:  A walled garden in the Valle Sagrado, Peru, a deep valley surrounded by mountains dotted with Inca ruins and terraces, bright sunshine, thin air, clouds scudding by high overhead, an infinitely changing tapestry.  A curandero sings gentle icaros and shakes a chakapa.  A dog runs across the grass, golden hair flowing, impossibly fascinating.  Flowers almost ready to burst they are so full of life.  Mountains alive, breathing, living.  Hours slipping by while time stands still.  Sunset listening to Enigma Variations, tears rolling down our cheeks, the best classical concert of her life according to Maret.  The doors of perception opened once more, overseen by a stand of benevolent cacti. 

Coming home again.  Coming home again.

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