"Oh sage, oh saint," I pleaded. "Teach me what I need to know.

"I sit at your feet in supplication, needing to learn, needing to hear what only you can teach."

And he opened his mouth and said "Listen to the breeze".

And I fell silent, there in that cave-room, far from the sunlight and air, and I thought of the twenty-one anterooms, each with acolytes asking questions, through which I had travelled to be there. It had been 21 days since I saw the sun.

And, much later, I sat, and listened for the breeze.



© 1999 Helen Whitehead
painting © 1998 Chris Winson