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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Silk Memories

The memories are so faint, like the echoes of a distant dream, that sometimes I wonder if they really did happen? But then I get still and examine them, turning over the details with loving care, and I know.

I had been with the trade caravans since I was a boy. Now no longer a young man, I knew every inch of the routes between Kashgar and Buchara - where there was water for man and camel, where there was shelter, the passes over the Tien Shan, and where bandits were likely to attack.

Buchara was the endpoint of my westward journey, and I had never been further west. I always hoped that one day I would journey to see the Amu Darya, the famed River Oxus. But it was never to be.

You told me you had never been out of Buchara in your life, and you loved to hear my traveler's tales. Your complex was my first and only stop after I discharged my duties - the settling of the animals and the goods (most important of all, the precious silk), the paying of the men, and then a stop at the temple to give thanks for the completion of a safe journey.

When I reached your place, filthy and dust-covered, feeling more like beast than man, you always seemed to be expecting me. You welcomed me as a long-awaited friend, and treated me as the only man worthy of your attention. It mattered not at all that that wasn't the case.

You led me into a changing room and lovingly undressed me. You took me into a shower and washed six months of dirt and sand off my body. The feel of your hands, and of warm water, after such a long time was a pleasure that seemed brand new each time, and that never grew old. You dried me, wrapped me in silk robes, and took me to my bed-chamber. I was asleep as soon as my body hit the soft cushions, and the last thing I remembered was your smile and your kiss to my forehead.

(Continued here)

6 comments:

  1. Wonderful narration. I'm captivated. Looking forward to the continuation.

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  2. This is so exotically dreamy, like a sensual oasis. I also look forward to more silky words...

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  3. You hit a tender spot in me. Travelling! And on the Silk Road, something I always dreamt of doing! Can't wait to read what comes next.

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  4. Six months of dirt and sand!! ; )

    Wonderful narration, indeed.

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  5. Love this! Fantastic memory/dream? I'm reading part 2 next! Very exciting. Has the feel of a past life... :)

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