Older Gods (pt 14 – final instalment!)


Older Gods 14

Is it only fools who fall in love? Or those inclined to blindness: the trusting and naïve. And what is it of love that means we cannot learn?

Having crossed the threshold of our first uncertainty, we had not foreseen the strife and enmity our love would cause, the anguish and violence, bitter recrimination. Then, still suffused with gentle feeling when we alighted on our well-loved shores as angels, had we forgotten everything that had passed before, or believed our leaving could have changed the world?

What was the lens through which we saw the older Gods, the parted, broken hearted, lonely denizens of sunken gaols? Were they saviours and redeemers for what we had thought forbidden; our reflection as those whose love had wrought destruction; or power that the world required, but had forgotten?

Returned now to the dark depths of the ocean, our twice born essence touched the God of making’s presence, and triggered a reaction that we could not have foreseen. The vast volume of water, sunless, black and freezing, boiled with his exultation. We felt the bedrock shudder as the Gods remade their connection, the bones of the earth, the blood-like magma, re-joined them across the trackless miles. We shot out of the ocean like catapulted stones, the pressure of rejoicing ejected us into the air. We watched the cloud face gather, and the world tremble and tremor as the surface of the sea bellowed an echo from the deep – I have been waiting centuries; at long last you have come.

From the far off mountain, ringing like a mile high bell the same words came back in answer, shattering the air and making tornadoes gather, whipped up by the frenzy of the reignited passion.

The wind howled drowning out the words exchanged as we sensed the blue God surging up from his confinement, and the distant mountain prison shake off its long worn cloak of ice. Within the rolling thunder we heard the heartfelt whispers, the intimate soft murmur that traversed across the skies: “forgive” and then “forgiven”, “my love”, and “oh my lover”, “abandon” and “forever”. We could not piece together the many missing parts; we flew higher to evade the rapacious hands of the wind.

The clouds parted for a moment between gusts, we saw the land begin to split, an earthquake tearing the entire world in two, and the ocean’s waters rising in a tidal wave that merged with lashing rain. In between a pale pearl, a ring of sand and the nacreous glint of jungle, our island home, the wave kissed shores on which we both were birthed. And above the violence and looming terror one refrain. “This world is all for nothing; all I want is you.”

We knew then, with our Gods touched minds, the intention of the thwarted lovers. The world into which they had poured their puissance, one proving love, one loving, had become too burdensome. What cared they for the little lives of men if they were not fed with the worship that they craved? What cared they that their failure to create a place of lasting peace and harmony had pushed the world beyond disaster’s brink and mankind to the verges of extinction? With one concerted sweep of hands, one mighty roar of exculpation they could crush the flawed bauble, trinket, token, cast the broken pieces in the sun and live their lives among the stars as if just then begun.

First to fall beneath the erasing wave would be our home. The baking sands and shading trees, the fishes tippling freedom, the protective coral reef. The verdancy of jungle and bounty of the sea. Family, blood, kin, bonds which our twice formed bodies lost, unmade remade, but which bound our hearts and minds like sodden hemp.

The land split asunder showering sparks of pent up lava, through the barren lands afoot the mountain towards our ruined city refuge. The waters rose above our island home.

How alien this Godly love from human love, which sought only its own adulation, and not the eternity and continuation. Immortality made creation meaningless, a game, a craft, a gift, a jewellery box carved and filled with pretty things. Yet for us creation was eternity, a flower planted in proof of love and our existence. How blind, how foolish we two to think there was some sympathy in the two crossed tales of star crossed lovers.

We, who thought ourselves powerless and exiled, had brought all that remained of earth upto this point, staring hollow eyed in horror at ultimate destruction. For all the death wrought at men’s own hands, mankind survived; scattered, isolated, ignorant.

We knew then there was only one course to tread.

Faith fuelled them. Our belief that there was something more for us in them was at the core of this burgeoning strength which found its last expression in destruction. Without us but free, in time they would recharge by sun and stars and over aeons, meaningless to the immortal, their once almighty strength. But now, to rid themselves of their imprisonment, to wash away the stain of shame their stymied love had brought, they leant upon the strength we gave them. They suckled on the power of our desire to love and bear our own child into the world, and used that heartfelt energy against all else that we loved.

Death awaits the apostate, none fall so far as fallen angels. We denied our Gods. Knowing they cared nothing for us now, we shed the skin of our belief, the core of strength on which we had left all that we knew, risking love and life itself, all this we bled out in that leaden sky.

We watched the world cracking earthquake stop, the foam topped tsunami waters drop as our own limbs turned to liquid and rained out of the sky. Without us to lift them up from their long imprisonment the Gods howled out their rage and their frustration, impotent and falling back into the captive grasp of sea and mountain, able only to withdraw the gifts that made us live.

For a moment our bodies melted into one shapeless cloud.

A wind of mercy blew cool upon us, unmade and falling as a gentle blue green shower upon the pearl that adorned the settling sea. The sand that once had birthed and borne us dimpled with our dying forms. A scattering of emeralds and sapphires, a sudden abundance, a wealth the children picked with glee, and those that sought to horde at once felt foolish seeing wealth beyond the means of measurement scattered on the beach.

What little consciousness remained stayed over that beloved shore, and watched the tide recede, then playful on the breeze it twined about as if to hold onto itself a moment more, then scattered with a whisper.

At long last we are one.

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