City


When I remake this city

He shall be at its heart

As the pillars that I crumble

Frame him in vain art

As the cornerstones groan

Beneath my every step

As the temples are leveled

But their filigree kept

The canals will run straight

When I move my hand

The statues will shatter

And the libraries stand

When I remake this city

It will gleam sharp and white

And he will be buried

In marble, deep inside.

© 2012 Elizabeth Cook

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Everything in One Room


The whole world is in this room, and pieces of the universe too.  A sample of this, a section of that, all compressed and made manageable for eyes that see in the third dimension. Or the fourth, depending on your reasoning. I have at my fingertips a collage of continents and centuries.  Life in its many guises runs through the collection that I call past, present, and future; although life is one of Earth’s younger inventions it crowds the room with colour.

When I speak of life I gloss over the first prehistoric cells and think of the complex and the beautiful instead.  Plants of a hundred different climes are here. With roots in the floor and stems above baseboard-level there are lotus flowers, Venus flytraps, a baobab tree.  Carboniferous ferns and cacti rub shoulders with deadly nightshade.

Just above the greenery the moving creatures make their appearance. Continue reading “Everything in One Room”

Memoirs of a Historian


This is an exerpt from a larger story. © 2012, Elizabeth Cook

At the times when I forget to come to a meal, to answer the telephone, or to clean up the clutter that is my office, my wife often calls me a useless nostalgic, a helpless romantic for the histories! In her heated voice these are insults, but to my ear, the truth was never so simple nor so pleasant. I reside within a construction of antiquated facts, dates, and recordings, all lifted up from the pages of history. A happy existence, from which the mist of the old, old past rarely clears, is my perfect study.

When those mists do clear, in the figurative sense I must blink and adjust to the present, whose flat sounds and uninteresting aspect does discourage me frequently. My wife’s hustle and bustle, her complaints and her frustrations, come from an immeasurable distance. There are no kings or mighty dynasties, no heroic battles or fascinating exploits. Plato, Augustus Caesar, Genghis Khan, Continue reading “Memoirs of a Historian”

The Song Story of Greater Halendon


© 2012, Elizabeth Cook

He sings the story of the world, the verses of the age.  His words begin with the beginning; when the giants built their great road, when the dwarves carved Dorrundelve from stubborn rock, when the Wyr of the elves spread its branches from coast to coast, when the half-beasts were born.

He tells of the centuries passing.

He sighs over the giants’ wars, the fierce clash of great beings bringing about their own demise. He marvels as the dwarves uncover their greatest treasure, the cold fire of the stars caught in stone, which will gleam for all eternity. He witnesses the sailing of the Elitheriel, the elven ship sent across the Brightling Waters in search of isles out of myth. He reaches a ghostly hand out to Lanaeia, daughter of the sunset, who watched her love fade over the waves, and who watched the sea until she died. Continue reading “The Song Story of Greater Halendon”