It appeared a tiny cottage from the street. Built around the turn of the last century, it was charming and understated. The color changed with the weather and the time of day . . . smoky gray to periwinkle blue to misty amethyst. The flaming red hedge bordering the walkway along with the hints of maroon accents on the trim of the structure, flowers and garden art conspired to draw the eye to the over-sized, burgundy door sheltered by the graceful vestibule with its arched entry. In a past life she might have hung her shingle on a place like this to practice her arts.

There in one of the flowerbeds . . . a large, crystal globe. Though colorless and clear, it somehow captures the light releasing it in a kaleidoscopic rainbow of color that glints and sparkles throughout the landscape. Funny how such trappings were never far from her. Wind chimes provide a soothing calliope of sound masking the commotion of the modern world. From the first step onto the path leading to that beckoning entrance, the assurance of acceptance and healing infused the very atmosphere. Visible only from the corner of the eye, sprites and fairies, no doubt, find safe haven in the magical space encompassed by her aura.

She and this place were the ethereal crossroad both of and in this realm of space and time, still transcending it to a peace beyond. She always had been. To live in both worlds, to feel so intimately all the past lives, to deal with the intensity and pain of having come to know her place through eternity could burn like a wild fire through her sanity and serenity. Always the common thread . . . courtesan, consort, mistress, midwife, mystic, gypsy, paramour, pilgrim, oracle, witch, whore, or wise woman . . . always independent, always sought after, but ultimately always alone.

She fashioned her personae for this life much as she created her dwelling. The façade for the world was attractive and appealing . . . approachable, but not attainable. She kept the secrets of herself to herself, still she was easily opened should one ever exist with the strength and bravery to embrace her essence. Rarely was that the case in her many remembered pasts. Usually they came to her wounded in some way . . . seeking to be relieved, revived, renewed, reassured, restored. In this existence many would label her a whore. In kinder times, she’d have been called a courtesan. Her graces bestowed on men yet again. Still it was better than the burning times, when those like her were hunted and persecuted.

Upon entering her domain, the dichotomies abound. This reflected in the décor of the room that greets any guest venturing into her abode. An eclectic mix of mid-century modern and contemporary furnishings with flowing silk curtains lifted by the gentle breeze perpetually wafting through the open windows.
Suggestions abound of what lies within her. There for the clever eye to see, the poem that is she. Miniature, pewter dragons and fairies frolicking about the piano top; fresh tulips in full blossom sitting just off center on the table; numbered prints by a turn-of-the-century artist hanging on the walls; fragile and fanciful perfume bottles peeking out through the glass doors of an art deco china hutch; a faux fur throw casually draping the foot of the red leather chaise; the massive floor-to-ceiling bookshelf overflowing with tomes, scrolls, and sheathes of paper; the fiberoptic lights scattered throughout performing strange dances of ever morphing colors and patterns; all are the clues. If there is but one that wishes to see . . . its all there.

The walls a calming, soft brown save one. The white-framed doorway leading deeper into her sanctuary stands out in stark relief against the darkest blood red of walls at once seductive and cautionary. To pass further is to venture into another place. This wall the metaphor of her face. Lovely and alluring, it demands attention, to be gazed upon. Still frightening the intensity of passion portrayed. Her eyes the doorway into her soul. Ever changing, never the same color, ever the sadness and sorrow, never an end to the tempestuous storm raging just below the temperate, quiet veneer.

To be invited past this admonitory signpost to the inner chambers of her artless environs, is to reach that place of ultimate rest. Among her gifts absolute empathy. Her knowing deeper than any man realizes. She feels their pain and knows where lies the answer for each. She listens until they understand. She gives of herself until they are safe and free to give to her. She giggles with them and at them always to their joy the peels of her laughter like that of a sweet, distant bell calling them home. She allows them to touch her until they can release to her touch. To be carried on the tide of her passion, a gift to any that would travel with her spirit.

She is a chameleon to their every need and desire, but still she is true to her own being. Authentic even in her diversity, she encompasses more than can be released to any one man without burning through his soul. She is the one they will never hold, at least only for as long as karma and fate allow for this fragile child of their governance to be part of any life. These sisters with destiny seem to dictate the beginnings and endings without notice beyond her intuitive sense of an impending finale. Knowing she is a tool makes no less the trauma that each lesson learned and given causes in her.

Sometimes there is a peace with a parting. Sometimes it is like having her soul wrenched from her. Sometimes she feels as if she has failed in some way to divert a karmic debt about to befall one she has felt compassion for. She has learned the harsh lesson that all she can ever do is point to a path, conjure an alternative, shine a brief light. Once a thing is done in whatever manner destiny dictates and she has played her role in the drama, she knows the road each must travel is away from her and her only option to watch them go.

Always another wounded creature will stray into her influence; another willingly submits to her ministrations; another to be touched by her ephemeral radiance and seek the safe haven of her loving embrace. Freely each time she submits to the test. It is her karmic repayment and blessing to have a transient place in the consciousness of so many more than a monogamous, shared life would permit. Should she bravely shoulder this burden now, just maybe there will come a time and place when there will exist one special man to see her, touch her, feel her in all that she is and not pass on from her, but rather incorporate her into his existence and take her with him, to hold her to him for eternity.

Would that among her gifts be the ability to see the happy endings rather than the endless doors closing to her down a vast hallway through infinity. Would that there be somewhere, a place for her to rest. Would it even be that she find a lasting love, her own safe haven?

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