Thirty-Four

I was in a cave with the Siberian man. There were small fires everywhere, giving warm light. There was a lake in the middle, fire dancing on the water. “How can this be?” – I asked the Siberian man, but he didn’t reply. Then the cave opened into a night field, but the grass was not grass, it was water. It was neither liquid, nor frozen – these narrow spades were long, soft and supple, almost transparent, moving in the wind. The watery vegetation was glowing in a soft shade of turquoise, and when I looked up at the sky, I saw tiny bursts of fire in place of the stars.

As I moved further, slowly walking in the field, letting the water-grass stroke my hands and legs as I went, I noticed a different, harsher kind of light to my right, to the West. I knew something was on fire but could not make out what it was. Its shape was indistinct.

Then  I saw butterflies darting up over my head and into the dark, their wings on fire. I was saddened, wondering whether they could feel pain. Then a bird took off to my right, to the East. Whatever it was above us, it seemed to have pores and wrinkles, like skin. The bird tore it up in her flight, and the sky was slightly bleeding, a watercolour red gently melting into the dark blue. And the turquoise water-grass was still glowing, still billowing. And the sky was still mixing its red with its blue, gently pulsating to the same rhythm, spreading all shades of translucent purple around.

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