The Stone of Mystery

For Gail Clark

by Misha Nogha

The stonecutter rests his fingertips on the rough surface of stone. A secret sliced from a cold Finnish mine. Is this the mystery of Ilmatar’s lost black egg? He closes his eyes, and feels the prismatic crystal slumbering there. A rainbow serpent coiled within, dreaming of dragons, and solar flares. The stonecutter, hums to the soul of the stone. Hmmmmmmm, and the stone answers mmmmmmmmm. And there is a flush and rush of excitement as he yearns to retrieve the soul. The cutter is a stone shaman, who must capture the stuff of dreams. The soul of a stone cannot be taken by force but must be enchanted, into the net. If the cutter saws his diamonds too fast the stone will shatter into a million star sparks, but too slow, it will burr and crackle. So the stone shaman must move into the cutter's trance, his eyes are covered in order to better feel the fire. Like a caterpillar in a chrysalis --it is waiting to flutter into a shimmering iridescent butterfly.

The stone shaman waits until his heartbeat matches the beat of the stone--a steady hand drum resonates with his intent. Moving into a journey of ecstatic flight, the stone cutter sails through the blackness of space inside the stone; the galactic cold does not faze him nor the stone’s fiery heart. He coaxes the color into his dream catcher and brings it out. Breathing life into the rock; his hand lovingly caresses a polished sheen.

The magical schiller spreads across the stone’s surface and the cutter chants a small spell of joy. He has released the aurora borealis.

Cupping it gently it in his hand he shows me his work. A shaman’s stone.

“You see?” he asks. “You see?” The jet-black gem turns in the light and a brilliant banner of color blossoms inside. A flaming phoenix of red, purple, gold, green and blue flashes fire. Perched on his palm is a little slice of labradorescent paradise. “There it is,” he says with a smile, “The Great Mystery speaks from the soul of spectrolite.”

“Aha,” I reply, “The secret of Sampo is sealed in the stone.”

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