Forest of the Heart,
by Roger Fritz, 7-9-02
You go into your mind, and it looks like the cockpit of a spaceship. There's the big padded chair you usually sit in, and the seatbelts that hold you in place when the going gets rough. Spread out before you is the control panel, and beyond it are the huge vertical viewscreens on which you see the world. They are blank right now, and the starship is humming quietly, resting.
You get up out of your pilot's chair, and you walk on thick carpet around behind the chair. There's a spiral staircase there, with dim lighting, and you walk down it. You go down and down and down. You can hear how the sounds of your footsteps on the treads echoes up and down the stairwell. You hear your breathing. You go down and down, farther and farther, winding around and around.
You come to the doorway of your heart. It is handcarved and elaborate, and light comes through cut-crystal panes set into it. You open it, and walk in. Your heart is a vast greenhouse, crowded with trees and bushes. You can see butterflies fluttering in the air and landing everywhere. You stroll on a path among the flowers and shrubs, under leaning boughs and bamboo. There are flowers of every color, magnificent blooms. On one side there are yellow lillies, and on the other a lilac bush in full bloom. Vines with pink flowers droop from boughs. A birdwind butterfly lands on a tree trunk.
You hear the sound of water nearby, and you wander through bushes covered with tiny red flowers till you come to a tall waterfall splashing into a pond. The cliff the water falls from is covered with ferns, and you feel the cool air from the falling water washing across your face. You wash your hands and face in the cool water. You see the waterlillies blooming nearby and the goldfish swimming among their stems.
You feel your breathing relaxing, and you walk on amon the trees draped with moss and with orchids perched in the nooks where branches meet the trunks. You come to a grove of the ancient giants, trees a thousand years old, two thousand years old, and you walk among their huge trunks. You feel the warmth of the sunlight falling through their branches and dappling their skin. You hear the songs of birds among the trees, and you hear the distant sound of the ocean. The ferns among the trees are taller than you are, and they wave gently in a breeze flowing up from the sea.
Clouds high above sail like careless ships across a blue sky, some of them dipping low enough to caress the hills and the tops of the majestic trees. The trees breathe out a cool breath from their leaves that flows down to the ground and surrounds you with freshness. A hummingbird whirs by, sounding like a tiny natural motor.
You look up, and the great trees stretch higher than your dreams. You feel fulfilled to be among them. The sound of the wind rushes in the treetops, and you can feel yourself rejuvenating. Your breath takes in the beauty of the maple trees and the huckleberry bushes and the tiny white flowers of the sorrel, and you are filled with peace.
You walk out from under the shade of the big trees, and into a meadow. The breeze ruffles the grass and shrubs. You notice a mother bear with her cubs, walking through the grass. Her brown coat shimmers in the sun. She stands up and sees you and calls her cubs. They trundle on their way into the forest, and you walk on across the meadow. A beautiful vista of trees and foothills and mountains stretches before you. You wade across a small stream, enjoying the feel of the cold water on your feet.
You begin to climb up the mountain, walking from the meadow up through forest and then through shorter and shorter trees till you come out on the talus slope. The last stunted pinyons cling to the mountainside around you as you climb higher. You feel the wind coming from the grey clouds, and you feel drawn to the heights. You climb up till the snowpack begins, and then you begin to run uphill across the great sloping snowfield. You feel the wind lifting your hair as you run. You see the sunlight glinting off the peaks around you, and the vista is the most beautiful one you have ever seen. The wind begins to lift your body, so that you are only touching down occasionally as you run. And then you are flying, soaring upward above the cold snowfield, lifting gradually toward the mountain peaks above you.
The wind brings the smell of snow, and you see that the wind is also blowing a plume of snow off the peak of the mountain above you. And in that plume of icy crystals, you see that a rainbow is forming. It brightens and brightens, and then it becomes a glowing multi-colored light that blooms in the air in a display of light and music that eases all your cares and soothes all your fears and leaves you feeling contentment in your body. You hear the lilting strains of the music of the spheres, and you drift in a sea of bliss along with many other delighted souls, who welcome you to an eternity of play. You can hear their voices like the sound of the sea, as they welcome you home, where all is love. And the waves leap up against the purple glow of consiousness, and you can feel that all is well.
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