THE GRYPHON SAID

(A Play on Words)



EXTRACT FOUR - ACT TWO




So let us then begin to seek the difference between I and U... Let us look at that in which you were schooled and seek to lessen the poison of the adder, beginning with the alphabet.


Where you were taught to form letters, the Fool focused on and learned characters...


Here we have the standard English Alphabet... ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ. I suppose we should immediately remove DUREX as those French letters, but for the sake of entente cordiale shall they remain. And though we do not work to become bi-lingual, we do look for bi-as...


ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ...


While you were busy learning by rote and repetition twenty-six letters, by the time you got as far as ABC, I was ahead of you by a quarter century down the line...


'Y': I had found the Tree of Knowledge, the glass to hold my Molotov, the path of life and the truth of choice...


Yet I came closer to the beginning than you ever did, you were already moving away from it: I was learning to complete before you even knew how to end. Even the first lesson in the alphabet had sealed our fates, marked me as different from you...


EFGH... Y!Y!Y!


Teacher could not take me beyond Y!Y!Y!; and I have never lost my fascination for and glory in that glorious facet of character. Sir, however, could not see beyond the Y! to the why? and thought me willful - and less than a week into the education cistern, I was sent to the stool in punishment, to learn the lesson of my alphabet in solitude.


Punishment? Punishment? This infant was done the biggest favour ever received. Away from the sufferance of the rote and repetition of twenty-six letters. Time, peace, space, to focus on the beautiful Why? The base of a kite and its string, flying, flying... A tulip, a sycamore seed, a sign at a road junction. Looked at from another perspective, it’s an arrow, piercing target; at another its a shoot, sprouting, a man going for a walk...


The intonation of...LMN...in the background is not heard; for there is a magic world being entered by the Fool. The initial possibilities of 'Y' exhausted, attention, undistracted by the teacher's prattle, is turned to the writing on the wall...


One letter stands out. I admire its uncluttered simplicity and sense its importance - but it doesn't go anywhere, it doesn't do anything: it doesn't even have a single squiggle to make it interesting. This one requires much reflection, even though its reflection is itself and thus would appear to need no more. But you, for its very simplicity - anything for an easy life - will come to love it and use it and abuse it, even as it will use and abuse you. It is going to dominate your entire life. Its influence will be your single, one-way track; its function no more than a crutch - but without it, you would have no means of following your non-sense of direction. I!I!I!I!I!


In blissful solitude do I then sit and C. You clutter that which you would, its pure form has small appeal to you - so you would cross or stroke it for C to become saw, that seen 'Gee...' Yet the sea was beautiful and still enough for me, so when I crossed it, that is when I discovered Paradise.


U. You have begun to think in terms of you and I: any U has nothing to do with your I. Are they not polls apart? Your selfishness and sense of superiority have already begun to be indoctrinated and received: for is it not always I before U? Yet I have so many U'S and only three I's. There is you and yew and ewe; and one is good and one is would and one is cud; there is one of you, a group of you... so men-y yous. Too am I two, both I and U, and to you I am you and you are I. There is no difference between us to my perspective, only eleven noble characters, with another, you would suppose, in 'L'...


Then did eye come to focus on how to B. It is only I who is being at the beginning; for you have progressed to owing, peeing and queuing. I have found the be all, as you are approaching the end all; you will carry-all, I alone have the hold-all: I can B, when you have forgotten how.


O! and R! To me is conjured visions of splendour and awe; and I gasp in breathless wonder. To you is only either or and, thus, you have neither nor - for you have not tasted the magic nor seen the miracle, but seek the alchemists art of transforming ore. Oh! Oh! Noticing that lips are shaped, even as they exclaim. I sigh it. Oh! I surprise it: oh! I give warning - oh! I delight - oh! Oh! I discovered onomatopoeias a decade before you.


I have thirty-five years of learning on you, before you have even reached 'Why'...


And I lose myself in the kaleidescope of the perfection of O: and know that, wherever I may choose to begin, if the hand and the heart of my I are kept steady and flowing, will I always complete. I can take any single point and return to begin again and again and again - and it doesn't matter which point I take, it is always only a part of the whole, of the Oh!


But I sense an importance to have a place of commencement and one of completion; one to call home and one to call destination. So I am happy to accept both A and Z; and, of course, there is a certain attraction in just one more character...


X. It is two noses, rubbing together: and didn't mommy say that was how Eskimos kiss? And isn't it what I put on the bottom of my letters, love-jewels, kiss, kiss, kiss. That's nice. Too do I find a point of peace at the point of perfect balance within its perfect symmetry. X - a symbol of love and the reason for being: X-ist, the seed of life in germination. Ex-X? Without it, I would be without and, thus, I would not be or C or O and R, nor would ever know Y. I have found the merit in ex-am, and none in XL, exS and ex-q's.


Lesson: Alphabet, twenty-six letters.


Yet there is the less in me: ten characters.


You have gone by the board as I have swept it. And what do you have? A series of symbols, ordered, but without meaning. While I have fewer, disordered, but full of meaning:


Oh, you are 'azy as I be and see. Why? Ex-it!


Or, rather, ex-'em. The first to go must be F-N-L, after all we seek heaven on earth. Get rid of the queues; drop the H-bomb; we are after manna, not manners, so throw away high T; and, of course, there are no P's for the wicked, so you can't have any of those. Get off the K's; walk the J. We look for one-self, so dispose of the double-you; we seek to live for the moment, not the diem. We are looking for understanding, balance, healing and dreams, so no more V-too, it prohibits.


Oh, Gee! There is little of the familiar now left. And even the basis of your reality is about to be removed: forget the esse, that which you judge as existing by the actual.


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