So, while our Frippery painted and painted, I watched. Swish, stroke, swish, stroke, blot, stroke, stroke...quietly she worked and all the while, slowly her hypnotic swish overcame me. The room seemed to fill with clouds of thinner and medium. Maybe the sun on the window warmed the skin under my pinstripes and starched collar too much, but I found I was hard pressed to stay awake. It seems I slipped into a trance or, maybe a deep dream...I tried to unbutton my jacket but fumbled at it badly, still sleep pulled me forth.
I shudder as I think about it now. It is probable that you, my dear readers saw it coming all along that our poseur friend Frippery was of a different breed of artist.
Declaring her simply a hothouse flower was too obvious here, but also it seems she could employ -- what I dare call only to myself -- something akin to magical thinking. Frankly, I had never even encountered such an idea before -- though I think it is oft talked about in rarefied circles, those circles from which I would unlikely have had occasion to conduct business.
My thinking all my life, I now freely admit, was always too limited. In that I thought life was containable and predictable. As example to this, I tell you I thought Lady Frippery was merely a painter and fashioner -- inspired or not -- I leave that to your kind critique -- but if you, my kind reader had suggested she was rather a changeling as she worked or made things, -- and further things out of those things (all the while poking at this idea of irrefutable permanence that I held dear)...at that I surely would have scoffed and eased myself politely out of the room.
However, as I am no longer your same narrator, formerly cloaked in the thinking of reproducible facts. I have come to respect the field of wonderment and hypotheses as the first steps of wisdom. My re-birth, if you will allow, had the strangest tendency to ease my mind and temperament the more I trusted my wholeness beyond the beloved confines of my former rule making and habit of constant questioning which I now found to be largely divisive and a fear about the quiet. My temples were falling as well they should. And, as Anais said, blossoming had it's risks.
No matter what the supposed risks or facts, I promise you I now know -- she, he or something was capable of some spirit enterprise. There was something definitely Pandora or uncommon afoot. I was still part skeptic in the margins of my being, that is true, as I was dyed in the wool a long time ago, but now, like it or not, I was forced to be a participant-voyeur and was determined to learn the source of all. Unceremoniously I was evicted out of my safe places and was now engaged in that snarl of ephemeris.
Dream or not, these woods were not only of our known world, though it shared many of its characteristics -- but rather here was the known world put back and forwards and shaken a few times; surrounded by agents and angels, trolls and all manner of things harpy, circus, gypsy, siren and -- thankfully the sublime divine. I could feel the shawl of the sacred around my shoulders. Whether ancient elders or other, I could not know, but I was glad for the company.
No wonder this parallel place was not often penetrated except by the exceedingly open or hapless. The latter would best describe my situation.
This was an easier world than our world, and too, sometimes harder -- if the Alignment was askew with too many assertions -- than the world you think you possess and grasp fell to dust.
My findings thus far are that the Woods are agile and dynamic. Its' dimensions are quantum and, and, as you see, I stutter -- alterable. Whether with smoke, mirrors, paint or some other contrivance chemical, physical or mental -- I know not how, but it seems I am on a course to discover.
Let us just say that if here one were to paint an apple, Frippery or another, it would be more than a simple two-dimensional painted thing. The apple might have inhabitants within, or might really be a vehicle of transport -- that if you were to pluck it off the page, you could also take a seat and passage to another time and place – possibly not of your own devising -- likely that is the case.
As a manner of start point, I confide that I had in fact sat myself down as I was invited to do one recent summer day. My rail ticket, so to speak was a typical 19th c. caned wood Hitchcock chair set just so for a portrait sitting at the behest of an anonymous gift with Madam Frippery presiding and my passage thus secured. Little did I realize that I had unknowingly set things in motion -- once enlightened one cannot return to darkness.
There was the expected oil paint on her palette and the requisite canvas as she began, but...as I have I queried myself again and again going over the sequence of events, how was it that when I awoke, I did not have the same form -- as when I had arrived for my sitting.
Nonesuch, the mister of the house, I am certain had his part too. It was not a cheap deception on either of their parts, at least I do not think so, but, rather simply the place itself or possibly a combination of place with these beings about how things came to adjust and re-present themselves.