Star of wonder, p.15

Star of Wonder, page 15


Star of Wonder

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  “The final gift of the Kings is myrrh.” This lump of resin, held carefully in Suncrest’s hand, was more yellow than the first, and had a waxy appearance. “Myrrh, which comes from a living tree, but which is used to anoint the dead. Myrrh, the gift of a wise man, who knew that even the baby born in the manger must someday die.”

  “But the final gift of the Sisters is milk.” Duskdance drew a hand delicately across her bosom. “The same milk which would give that child, and every child ever born, nourishment and life. These gifts, more than any others, seem contradictory—and yet they are not.” She accepted her husband’s hand to help her to her feet. “All that lives will die. Yet still, we rejoice, we celebrate, for today, we live. We love. We laugh, and learn, and leave behind rich stories, for those who will go on living when we ourselves have died.”

  “Our days are numbered, every one of us.” Suncrest drew the myrrh gently across Duskdance’s wrist, awakening its dark, smoky scent. “We hope the number will be large, yet even the largest number dwindles at last to nothing. What will be left of us when we are gone? What will we leave behind in this world, if tomorrow we die? Will those who knew us best breathe silent sighs of relief, or weep tears of bitter sorrow? The answer lies in our own hands, and our own hearts, to decide.”

  “When we live every day that we are given in this world to its fullest extent,” Duskdance proclaimed, lifting her free hand as Suncrest did the same. “When always we remember that we could be remembered, just as we are at the moment. When we devote ourselves to openingdoors for others, rather than slamming them shut—to freeing prisoners, saving the condemned, restoring sight to the blind—to giving others life, so that at our deaths we may survive in their memories.” Her voice rang out over the silent clan. “That, in how we ought to live our lives, is enough.”

  Full quiet reigned for three slow breaths. Then, softly, the princess Starsong began to sing.

  “Veni, veni, Emmanuel,

  “Captivum solve Israel…”

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