The foresT whIch Is growIng here Is old. VerY old. PrImeval. BuT noT eTernal. NoT everlasTIng. Oh no. If IT was eTernal, IT should have been alwaYs here, whIle undoubTedlY There was a TIme when ThIs foresT was noT here, when There was no foresT here. There had been manY dIfferenT ThIngs here before ThIs foresT appeared. There had been also oTher foresTs. VerY dIfferenT. Some of Them could hardlY be called foresTs. There was a TIme, before all Those foresTs, almosT-foresTs, non-foresTs, when no foresT could grow here, because There were no foresTs aT all, noT even almosT-foresTs and non-foresTs. foresTs were nowhere because There were no Trees. Yes, IT's hard To belIeve and ImagIne, There was a Treeless and foresTless TIme...
The foresT whIch Is growIng here, has been growIng sInce TIme ImmemorIal. TIme ImmemorIal Is The TIme when none of The creaTures lIvIng on EarTh could remember anYThIng. IT was The TIme when The creaTures lIvIng on EarTh had no memorY aT all. EverYThIng whaT happened used To dIsappear aT once and for ever. NobodY sTored In Themselves anY pIcTures and Images of whaT TheY saw, heard, felT. Those creaTures were reallY bIzarre – The world was alwaYs new for Them and everYThIng whaT was goIng on, was happenIng for The fIrsT TIme, everYThIng whaT TheY were doIng, were doIng for The fIrsT TIme, whIch was noT True, of course, TheY onlY perceIved The world In ThaT waY, TheY were convInced so.... Oh, IT was verY InTeresTIng TIme, buT ThIs Is noT The TIme ImmemorIal. TIme ImmemorIal Is The TIme ThaT Is noT remembered bY Those who are lIvIng here now. When TheY were born, The foresT was alreadY here, IT was old and vasT and powerful. WITh no doubT ThIs foresT was once Young and small – everYThIng ThaT Is old and bIg, had To be Young and small – buT nobodY of Those lIvIng here now has seen ThIs foresT Young and small..... IT's InTeresTIng wheTher ThIs foresT has memorY. And If so, whaT IT remembers. And If IT can remember, whaT TIme Is for IT ImmemorIal.....
ThIs foresT Is older Than me, no doubT. And The Trees? Some of Them are older Than me, no doubT. Some are noT. The Trees whIch are older Than me, were Young some TIme ago, no doubT. Then oTher old Trees were growIng besIde Them, no doubT, buT now TheY don'T grow here anY more. A foresT Is alwaYs a mIxTure of Trees of dIfferenT age, ThaT Is whY Is seems To us alwaYs The same, huge, powerful, changeless, whIle everYThIng In IT keep changIng, all ThIngs exchange, replace each oTher, Transform. OnlY The foresT ITself does noT change. IT means: IT keeps changIng Too, no doubT, buT slowlY, verY slowlY, almosT unnoTIceablY – of course, when IT Is noT Young, because when IT Is Young IT changes quIcklY and noTIceablY, even asTonIshInglY. A few Years ago The Trees were buT knee-hIgh, we were wadIng as If across a lush meadow, and suddenlY we have To push ourselves Through The dense ThIckeT of InTerTwIned branches. NexT TIme we go There, we wIll fInd above our heads a lIghT-and-shadow canopY spread on numberless columns, posTs, poles, pIllars....
HIgh noon, mIddle of a daY, and There's green dusk In The foresT .... MIdnIghT, and There's no green dawn – I guess noThIng buT ThIck darkness lITTle bIT greenIsh..... I have never been In ThIs foresT In The nIghT. I was In IT In The evenIng. IT was almosT a nIghT InsIde, whIle sTIll a daY ouTsIde. I ran awaY To The daY. I was afraId, soon I would noT be able To dIsTInguIsh Trees from InTer-Trees for TheY would be smudged lIke Ink bloTs on a bloTTIng-paper. And I wouldn'T be able To dIsTInguIsh leTTers …... The Tree are huge here. STraIghT. Slender. SpIre-lIke. Proud. Could be used as masTs. Huge masTs for huge saIlIng-shIps voYagIng across seas and oceans vasTer Than The largesT spaces and margIns. I don'T know If TheY are good Tree for makIng masTs. I know noThIng abouT saIlIng-shIps and saIlIng. YeT ThIs doesn'T make me worrY. I prefer walkIng To saIlIng.
ThIs foresT Is noT dense. Bushes are noT so ofTen here, and TheY are noT unpeneTrable – buT There Is no need To push oneself Through Them, If one can pass Them bY easIlY...... And a sofT carpeT of mosses under The feeT..... NoT everYwhere. SomeTImes There Is a maTTress of YellowIsh needles. SomeTImes There Is a spongY laYer of decaYIng leaves, dark brown, almosT black. SomeTImes There are rocks, buT even rocks seem sofT, and If noT sofT Then noT hard. SomeTImes There are grasses. And subshrubs – a dwarf decIduous foresT. Grasses and subshrubs mean also dIfferenT Trees. NoT so sTraIghT, noT so spIre-lIke, noT so monumenTal, more moTleY, spoTTed, speckled, less serIous, ThInner, more supple, Though of The same hIghT . . . . . . .
And furTher, behInd ThIs more parkY parT, There Is buT The edge. Trees dIsTorTed, Tousled, TwIsTed, Torn,ragged, shorT, bushY, shrubbY . . . . . . . On ThaT edge, on The edge over There – noT on ThIs edge, noT on The edge here. lIke a page havIng one edge cuT wITh scIssors, and The oTher Torn off wITh a sudden move of ImpaTIenT hand.
The lIghT In The foresT Is ToTallY dIfferenT Than The lIghT In The orchard, Though The old orchard Is growIng wIld and The majorITY of Trees are noT apple Trees. BuT even The mosT savage orchard, The mosT savage garden Is noT a foresT, ThaT Is whY The lIghT Is dIfferenT In IT.
A foresT Is prose. A garden Is poeTrY.
A foresT Is a Tale, sTorY, novel... A garden Is a poem.
LIghT In prose Is dIfferenT Than lIghT In poeTrY.
lIghT In a novel Is dIfferenT Than lIghT In a poem.
And If someThIng Is neITher prose nor poeTrY?
If SOMETHING Is neITher a novel, nor a poem?
If SOMETHING Is neITher a foresT nor a garden?
How abouT The lIghT Then?
How does IT shIne, If IT shInes?
ThIs foresT Is a runIc one . . . . . . . . . A runIc-ogham one. BuT noT runIcoghamIc. No. RaTher rune-rune-runIc-ogham . . . . . . . All foresTs are mIxed. Some are more, some are less. Pure TYpes of foresTs don'T exIsT. TYpes are Ideals, and Ideals don'T exIsT – ThIs Is The faTe of Ideals . . . . . . So, ThIs Is a rune-runIc foresT wITh some oghams, pIcTographs, wITh hIeroglYphIc edges . . . . . . . Here and There some laTIn leTTers. ScaTTered around. Thrown randomlY . . . . . . . . . . . ThaT's whY ThIs foresT Is so mYsTerIous. STIll mYsTerIous. Unreadable. Encoded . . . . . . ThIs? No – ThaT foresT. ThIs foresT Is laTIn. Thus readable. Decoded . . . . . . . However noT enTIrelY. Never enTIrelY. <<<