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The Lords of the Forest


2010 - 2016

I still can't believe how much I lived before I went into this rocky forest. Sometimes I still wonder where I got the strength to break the belly from inside the sea monster that swallowed me.

At this point in the story I could firmly say that I was brave enough to stare death in the eye, jump on it and cross its dark, dense body to perhaps be born again.

Yes, I can say that I was reborn.

Much stronger, in fact. When I emerged from the depths I swam for just over 20 minutes until I was lucky enough to find dry land.

It was on the shore that I had what I think was a vision: the painter Courbet was sitting with some strange friends at a table; they were silent,
but you could still hear the conversation they had in the silence they contained.

I remember the surprise I got when I saw what was under your table:

the entrance to the forest where I now find myself was between his feet.

I decided for some reason (maybe even hypnotic) to get into it, maybe I forgot the dangers I could be exposed to. I knew some initiatory stories that took place in these mysterious landscapes, so symbolic. Many of these stories did not always end well. Although in all these ambushes the risk also brought with it a catharsis, a great promise in the end.

I knew that in the woods appearances can be deceiving, or not. That which you think can save your life can take it away; that which seems to want to kill you can give it to you, and therefore make you grow.

Again I was facing another tremendous journey, and I damn well wanted mine at this time when my body was asking for a well-deserved rest. But the truth is that after being reborn from the worst of my fears, anything could seem like simple child’s play to me. I spent a few hours walking through the lush forest when suddenly a character with big ears and a blue face crossed my path. He seemed to be singing on impulse, but with a voice that I might not have heard, as he scared away many animals and attracted others who came out of their hiding places. I sat down carefully near him to watch the quasi-absurd silent spectacle.

When he finally finished his mute cantata he asked without looking at me: “Well, what do you think, Blinky? Surprised, I answered after a moment: “Excuse me, how do you know my name?

That strange character who was not more than five feet tall turned his head to look at me and asked me: -and how not to know Blinky? have you forgotten about me? come on, seriously, what did you think? The rodents came to me, and in this case the owls and bats fled in fear. That’s a good sign, don’t you think?

-And how should I know? -I answered -I couldn’t hear anything!

-Don’t tell me, you’re deaf too? -Wow. You look wet, you must have got water in your ears,” he took something out of his pocket and continued, “dry yourself. By the way, my name is Mr. Kanin, in case you don’t remember.

He gave me a handkerchief with some gold embroidery, it looked like alchemical symbols, although it also had a strange luminous skull in the centre. And the truth is that this Mr. Kanin was very, very familiar to me…

-Well, my friend, you look so stunned, you wouldn’t have survived a shipwreck! -Let’s have Alfred make you one of his hot drinks so you can recover a little… Hopefully we’ll make it in time for the Game of Garlic, which should be about to begin.

I continued without thinking about this strange character, somehow he transmitted me a lot of confidence, even though I didn’t know him for more than ten minutes.

Surprisingly it seemed that the owls and bats, which with their deafening song expanded, accompanied Mr. Kanin on the way again, as did all the other animals of the forest.

I tried not to be too surprised by this wonderful event, and I tried to take it as something normal of this new place.

Some little birds landed on Kanin’s shoulder, his pockets seemed to be full of many different kinds of bugs, and snails adorned his body in a very peculiar way.

Suddenly I realized the melody that I was beginning to hear little by little, was emitted by an indefinable voice, deep, but perhaps a little androgynous… and in a somewhat unknown language, or with a strange accent that I could not locate.

But I realized that it was Mr. Kanin, and I realized that maybe the animals always heard the voice that I didn’t hear before…

Among the trees on my right side I glimpsed the silhouette of a huge dark figure moving. A shudder ran through my bruised body… that unsettling figure approached us like a huge dry tree walking under some kind of spell.

-Don’t be afraid, it’s Ilan de Mountain, don’t you remember either?” Kanin warned me.

-How, um… Well, I didn’t really respond with my heart in my throat.

The sinister shadowy silhouette carried a small light that hung in one of his hands, like a tiny chandelier trying to light up an entire Gothic cathedral.

The huge character was dressed in long dark clothes, stamped with real branches and dry leaves that had become entangled all over his body. A Mazinguer Z t-shirt peeked out from under a slightly lighter shirt, and black skins hung over his shoulders. Above them, high above, a number of tiny trees seemed to grow beautifully on the top of his hump.

His hair, shaved in half by his little skull, was reddish, perhaps dyed with some natural earth that gave away some lumps of mud.

His face, also bluish, acted as a counterpoint to his hair. He had a sharp but friendly expression, with a well-cut beard and bushy eyebrows that highlighted small black eyes that glowed in the dark.

– You won’t believe what I saw today! He burst in while he was looking over our heads.


By Blinky Rotred

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