Thursday, February 7, 2013


We approached a clearing, where there was no bonfire, but a circle of white stones, tiny white stones, barely the size of pebbles. They were placed closely together, so thickly they covered the entirety of the pasture in a perceptible ring, the white reflecting the moonlight around the clearing like a mirror. Gathered in the center of the circle was a delegation of beings found only in fables, in fairy tales, tiny gnomes with leather vests and long beards, the women with embroidered skirts and braids down their back. Infants the size of kittens crawled within the perimeter of the stone circle, and my captors, my hosts, sat me upon a moraine in the center, handed me a thimbleful of wine. It was a sweet wine, an enchanted wine, and while I know better than to drink the wine of the forest dwellers, I raised the flagon in respectful toast, and drank deeply.