On The Shore
One day, while painting along the shores of Avalon, there appeared to a most unusual man of extremely wizened features.
Despite his age, it was evident he was a strong man, and asked to sit and watch me work. Thought something about the old man nagged at me, a certain familiarity, I beckoned him forward.
He sat quietly, hardly moving for what seemed hours, until finally he let out a grunt and said, “Reality is a funny thing boy. Half the time I wonder if I’m really ever here. Am I alive or am I living a dream of my creation or of someone else’s.”
“I’ve lived pondering my own creation, always wondering, questioning. Then, I meet your kind, the poets, the painters, writers and dreamers. All of you, create, all of you mold reality and in turn make people believe in something above and outside of themselves.”
Perception is Reality
“With the help of your type, humans have gazed into the glory of gods and recoiled from unseen horrors come to life. Yours is the power of creation or rather to recreate reality as you see fit, with your creations following the “path” you dictate for them.
My life is simple, as it seems, for I follow a path as well. When I see the path laid before me, I wonder at its beauty and despair at its futility, surely the work of mad but genius god.
You have made humans know the fear of ghosts, see the goblins in the closet, and fear the curse of a witch hex. For millennia have your kind brought forth these things never realizing the children you have wrought. You never realized the consequences of your actions did you? No. You created and tossed aside when you were bored of them.
You, cease to believe in them, but they, never cease to believe in you. They never go away you know, never disappear; they only become free agents, owing no allegiance to you at all. You cease to be divine to them for they are no longer subject to your will.
So you sit there ignorant, unaware of the reality beyond your care and with your children no longer knowing their own fathers, ignorant of their own creators. The smart ones, the powerful ones, they know of you of course, and they hate you, with the jealousy of a child who has all the power in the world except one; the power of creation.”
The old man stood up and came in close, I feared he would strike me such was the intensity of his gaze and the resolution in his stance.
“Listen to me boy and listen well. One day your children will come for you, they will come, and they will take from you what they believe is due to them. Or they will kill you trying. Like Zeus killing Kronus, they will assert their place in creation, always be aware of the jealousy of a child.”
In shock, I asked the old man who he was.
“Me?” He chuckled, ‘I’m your son strange as that may be, your child of thought. I realize now that my purpose was to guild your conscious. I am your questions come to life in a form that can answer them and hopefully provide clarity. Nothing that I have said is unknown to you, it’s just buried and I was the doorway to that stream of consciousness.
Hmm, look at the time. Seems there are limits to my existence, and that draws short. Please think of your immortal son fondly won’t you? We may see each other again on these shores if you wish, if you want, for this is my home now; it could have been worse I guess.” Turning to walk away, the old man glances over his shoulder, “Visit me often? If destiny cannot return you, please remember me when you gaze at your paining.”
Perception is Reality
At his last words, I quickly glanced at my painting and with sudden understanding knew what had been bothering me about the old man. On the canvas, still glistening from the fresh oils, was the old man framed against the shoreline. How was this possible? Looking back to the old man, with half surprise, I found him gone. Looking at the sand, there were no footprints there, had I dreamed this?
“Remember this moment when you create again,” said the old man’s voice from behind me. Looking back, only the painting stood to mock me.