I walked down the steep hill, through the
tall grass, under the white sticky fruit tree blossoms, past the bat, who
was swooping in and out of the marginal evening light, gulping the bugs I
stirred and dizzied, left vulnerable in my wake. I walked through the field,
the back yard, a glass of herb and anise scented Pastis in hand, I walked
from dark to darker, to get a better view. With each step I had a better
view, of French farms along the ridge, across the steep valley silhouetted
against the orange of the setting sun. With each step I came closer to proud
Orion, gaining prominence with the recession of daylight, his Rigelian foot
set upon the ridge of the orange hills. But the reason I had come to this
spot, amongst the grazing Limousine cows, was to see the comet Hale-Bopp,
for my first time, in the darkness of the Correzian countryside.
Hale-Bopp was there, like a blurry star with misty stardust trailing away from the sun, blown by the solar wind. A celestial snowball thrown from the back side of Cassiopeia into the setting sun. I saw a flashing red light in the tail, an airplane, and laughed to myself, imagining it to be the space ship that transported away the Higher Source group. With that thought, a gloom fell upon me. I thought of the beautiful place in which I stood, and how close to heaven this is, how close and mysterious and beautiful is the comet, the inanimate celestial traveler, appreciated from my Earthly vantage, and that those poor souls, were led astray by delusions of paradise, of heaven, of a better place, thinking that the comet must be a sign, from another living thing in the vastness of space. They were so driven by and content with their belief that they "shed their" bodies, ended their life experience, in their desperate misguided quest for that better place. I felt strangely awkward as I experienced exactly that place, and felt not at all in need of transport.