Abduction on Flickr.
The cage was crafted of the trickster’s tongue, the only thing in all nine worlds that could trap any creature unwary enough to cross its path. He gave it—well. “Gave” is a strong word. It was taken, shall we say, with little enough trouble, and he grew a new one with even less, and he was wasting it anyway.
This is how you make a Memory:
You take a raven and all its nest mates; you take them to the edge of the world in a cage made of cleverness and curiosity, and you let them see into the abyss. You take from them each an eye, filled with the things it has seen, and you let them go.
The one that comes back, the one that wants restitution and revenge and, most of all, the knowledge that you took, is Memory.
This is how you make a Thought:
You hang a god from a tree. You string him up with his own rough hair, and you push two branches through the seething mush of his brain until twigs run alongside the medial and lateral rectus muscles that hold his eyes, until he looks where and when and how you will, and then you set the tree walking. You let ravens roost on his arms and make their messy nests in the dislocated hollows of his shoulders, and as their nestlings grow, you let the god whisper to them all the things that he has learned. When nine days and nine nights have passed, you cut the god down. You keep one of his eyes. If he lives, you wait for him to walk. The nestling that follows him, that sits in the healed hollow of his shoulder and reminds him of all he said, is Thought.
If he does not live, you try again.
I don’t have words for how I feel about Nympheline’s piece to accompany this painting. It’s beautiful and thought provoking and wonderful.
Would you like to see more collaborations like this? If you would, please reblog this and let me know. Because if there is an audience for it, we will try to make it happen. And if you have ideas about what form it could take, we’d like to hear about that too.