From: Elspeth@webtv.net (Elspeth) Newsgroups: talk.bizarre Subject: FTSD: Lizard People Date: Wed, 1 Dec 1999 08:13:38 -0500 (EST) Organization: WebTV Subscriber Lines: 112 Message-ID: <21203-38451F02email@example.com> X-WebTV-Signature: 1 ETAuAhUApOrh/qETZDw5nhJOIu8DpXyVthECFQClS5LVh9aYLlYC3cFG/2P1IkfImw== Content-Disposition: Inline I was swinging through the branches =A0=A0of my oboe-playing tree, contemplating the expanses =A0=A0of the world surrounding me: 'Twas the vast Saharan desert, =A0=A0windblown dunes of endless sands, so immense, it can't be measured =A0=A0by my tiny human hands. We were making steady progress =A0=A0surfing down the drifty dunes where there used to be a forest =A0=A0back a hundred million moons, and we came to the oasis =A0=A0where the lizard people dwell sadly biding 'mongst the traces =A0=A0of their ancient citadel. Now the lizard folk are colorful, =A0=A0but scaly and grotesque; yet the tales they tell are wonderful =A0=A0~ so strange and arabesque. After greeting us sedately =A0=A0with a pensive, tristful air, one inquired, slow and stately, =A0=A0would we take the waters there? I descended to the sands =A0=A0and curtsied low and formally, ''Twould be well to take this chance =A0=A0to offer -you- a cup of tea!' And I saw the lizard smile =A0=A0as he gestured to his vale, 'Turn aside with us awhile; =A0=A0I shall tell to you a tale.' So we gathered on the grasses =A0=A0by the waters 'neath the palms, and the teapot made its passes, =A0=A0and my tree intoned his psalms; and the lizard king held court upon =A0=A0an ancient throne of stone just as downward rolled the setting sun =A0=A0and upward rolled the moon. 'Ah! Behold the stones about you. =A0=A0It is sad to watch them grow. -- Though so well they grow, and proud too! =A0=A0('Tis the desert heat, you know.) Here the young may move so freely =A0=A0though their elders don't approve. . . They forgot their water dreams, you see . . =A0=A0forgotten why you move. . . 'They say, "Water is a gadfly =A0=A0who can never learn a thing since she moves forever -- madly!" =A0=A0But the young aren't listening. Furtively they try to work themselves =A0=A0where waters like to go: onto gully slopes or runnel shelves =A0=A0in hopes to catch a flow. 'Thus, despite the many dangers, =A0=A0they desire to see the world, maybe settle where they're strangers =A0=A0so to fly their flags unfurled; and though family ties are strong in stones, =A0=A0some few do make away, and they carry scars upon their bones =A0=A0to show their young one day. 'But as stones are growing older, =A0=A0they grow more conservative. You will never hear a boulder =A0=A0boast of where it used to live. Moving's risky --=A0if not sinful. =A0=A0Staying put is where it's at. Thus the most distinguished pitful =A0=A0mark their time by getting fat! 'And on clear and balmy summer nights, =A0=A0as pebbles dream aswoon, their elders whisper soft in fright, =A0=A0"Behold again! The Moon! How it glows and whips across the sky =A0=A0and changes shape so bad! How it pulls at us to follow. -- Why? =A0=A0It is a stone gone mad!"' Then the lizard king arose upon =A0=A0his frowning throne of stone, 'Let us rise before the rising sun =A0=A0and dance beneath the moon! Ho there, tree! Pipe up your oboe! =A0=A0Play a charming, winding tune. Let us dance the mad bolero =A0=A0for the loony, crazy Moon!' So we danced in the oasis =A0=A0where the lizard people dwell, and we danced among the traces =A0=A0of their crumbling citadel. And I saw the lizard weeping =A0=A0streams of water from his eyes as the dunes were dream'ly creeping =A0=A0under endless windy skies. Elsie --- Based in part upon Richard Shelton's very short story "The Stones".