Thursday, January 21, 2010

Part II, it needs some work

To strangers he'd talk about the silence you experienced, not just some earth bound conception of audio-implacability but silence of all the sense: a true removal from the constrains of the citizen soldier's Possible. To those friends of whimsy and drink he would clamor about the disconnection and connections one let oneself find down amidst the darkness: ideas that had never been able to surface due to some subjugation by light. The religious heard claims of both God and Mammon ruling below, finding bonds with each far more substantial than one could develop topside. But in moments of reflection, when speaking only to himself, he saw in his journey the conflation of realities down there in the blackness; moving from one to another as he so chose. To some the reason was the question, and for them no answer was mystical enough to satisfy; some saw only deviance and shunned even their own curiosity on the subject. The more level-headed knew that each answer was only a facet of the overall Truth of the situation: each one representing some given line-of-approach to the unseen center, shrouded by these causes. They knew to understand, one must move past reason to reach that center, but none had succeeded in removing their logos sufficient as to reveal what lies hidden. Perhaps he had seen below the level of understanding, and had been attracted down into it. Living down there in attempt to become the center, not being able to approach it from the outside but only subsume it into himself. That is why the mystics came, monks of some arcane order traveling to those solitary outposts of humanity on the edge.

The first tip-off to management was the continual appealing to the winds.  Everyone knew any mine would have wind developed by isomorphic atmospheres, energy gradients and general machine chicanery.  It was the breath of the monster, the mine’s respiratory system pumping in and out with regularity.   Braulio was feeling something else: typhoons and pressure systems, weathers blown in from the West with a night-long gale.  At first the conversations occurred in hidden localities away from the more sinister ears of upper-division, but as time progressed his declarations became unbounded until the fascination was generally known.  When they begin to send the more serious types to question him, out came the quizzical face and some baffling phrase about counter-winds and ethereal planes coincident with our own.  This kind of Eastern nonsense never went far with those running in dialectic modes of thought who reported back to management general competency and ingeneral irrationality. Never enough to frighten anyone in-office, but it would go on the chart.

His typical pontifications on the subject took the form of some sort of muddled, sailor-ese.  Speaking of currents and eddies out in the blackness, putting up allegorical jibs and insisting on sleeping on the leeward side of walls and posts.  These eccentricities wouldn't put him in the forefront of the mine-crazies, merely part of the effervescent unsettled, part of the movement for spiritual clarity in the midst of temporal pursuit.  Large congregations of restless souls finding respite from their temporal drudgery: mild insanity was pleasant form of relaxation.  A kind of anti-Freudian relief: replacing repression with exaggeration of emotion that could take mysterious paths in this darkness common in the extremes of professional life.

This particular manifestation of psyche reversal was notable at first not for the man but the brief following he enjoyed.  Some a bit more sensitive to the spiritual √¶ther noted right off that Braulio was aware of things not yet found, or strictly speaking, not yet occurred.  Those more adventurous of the workmen began to question him about it, trying to find that elusive wind themselves.  Some sat up nights in shoddy boats made of timber and oar scrounged from waste piles discovered on sly expeditions to levels yet unearthed from history.  Often claims would be bandied about as to trips taken under this new-found wind power, some giving accounts of visions with token guest appearances from the likes of King Magnus III, bestowing approval on their own paltry efforts of emulation.

As time slipped by and the those wind ship adventures peaked at some climax of penetration into the quietistic, leaving unanswered questions of wind truth, and tunnel vortices.  The movement ended as most such expeditions do: a bigger clamor elsewhere had drawn away the gaggle of fair-weather followers.  Some soul, levels above was discovered to have lips that mapped  out the ore-veins not yet found; letters to a chief up on ground, sealed with a kiss was recognized by a young topologist working in a part-time secretarial calling.  Saw the lines meld together with the maps he kept, finding common center at the crest of the lower lip, a new vein having opening up just that day.  The crowds soon shifted out to engage in some oral perversion of spirituality: seeking maps to El Dorado amidst those minute crevices on every face they could locate through use of tarot or other, more seamy devices.

Braulio remained at post, still passing along tales of the moving stillness, and was forgotten for a time pounding out poissonian distributions of history salvage.  Temporal excursions, journeying into the lost corridors of ancient mineralogies.  The Mine had been closing the moment ground was broken ages ago.  A monument to human progress: detailing the search for minerals at the edge of understanding.  Corridors running down at seemingly random patchworks of madness, countless miles of understanding lost to the passages of eternity.  Now Braulio is discovering again, never sure it was ever truly known as he has come to know.  It was a unique position in mining; discovery of what once was.  So many shafts closed, so many blasted off discoveries that could now be unearthed.  Braulio was to find what had been lost and what could be recovered.  A journey inwards for the mine if only management’s epistemology included self-realization it might be thought of as grand adventure instead of merely profit recovery.  Not that they hadn’t chosen correctly in picking out Braulio to head the project, upper-division having some mathematical Ouija board from which to set all their schedules without the tedious necessity of understanding.

The original Mine entrance was seen first by Marie Esclane while living in North Carolina with her cousin Dyan in a two story, plantation house built as part of an experiment into the properties of phlogiston.  Exotic combinations of iron, copper, topaz, and corundum were found in large quantities amidst basement fortifications against the aggressive ground water of the region.  These alchemical innovations thought to provide insights into motive force had been abandoned with the house when its owner finally succumbed to the caloric theory that had threatened his work since the beginning of the century.  Picked up for a song by her parents, Dyan found the house to be ideally suited to a life of ease for two young maidens and thus promptly invited her relative Marie, whom the rest of the family regarded with reserve, to room with her.

Though unmolested in their mostly harmless dalliances at country parties for the first months of occupation, the pair soon found their pleasures arrested by nighttime scares and vivid images of soft-focus terrors.  For Dyan the nights became an unrelenting cascade of childhood fears which required doctors of all stripe and healers ranging from Pastoral intercessionsests to Indian Shaman summoned at no small expense from reservations a nation distant.  Finding no release, a prolonged trip to the country Northward was proscribed which led to an unsightly marriage proposal from a rather rowdy Shan Rutling.  From there it was a short journey to removal from family inheritance and finally from family memory.

Marie stayed longer, occupying the house alone for two more years.  Nightmares settled into patterns, recurring images of caverns losing their ominous glow, doorways that seemed to no longer lead into hell, but paradise (or its earthly equivalent).  Forces Marie never fully understood began to intervene in her life, bringing strong desires to investigate Westward into the mountainous world that was still being explored by the likes of Edwin James and Dr. Ferdinand Vandeveer Hayden.

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