Once Upon a Time in a Timeless State of Mind…   Jack, the Pumpkin Headed Son of Earth, and 2 other men named Lost & Soul were shackled inside of a cave; forced to face the wall in front of them. Behind them is a fire, and between their backs and the fire is a fluttering bat that produces a moving shadow on their wall.

Lost: Look! Look! There it is again!

Soul: Oh, it is dancing around this time! What is this reality? What do we call this real thing?

Jack: Are we certain that this dark spot moving along this rock wall is a concrete reality?

Lost: How may this dark spot moving along this rock wall not be a concrete reality, Jack?

Soul: Look at it go! You do see it moving along this rock wall, don’t you, Jack?

Jack: (squints) I do see the movement, and the spot, and the morphing shape, but something inside of my psyche mourns in disbelief.

Lost: It is real, Jack.

Soul: It is just as real as us, Jack.

Jack: I don’t know.

PLATO’S CAVE

From the corner of his right eye, Jack espies a glimpse of the quickened bat.

Jack: What was that?

And in the swiftness of a flying moment, Jack’s chains fall.

Jack: I am free? (turns to bat)You are real? Such a liberating thing it is, to spy out a new reality.

The bat moves, Jack follows, and they exit the cave.

Jack: What is this? What is that? What are those wholesome objects? What are these bright-

Plato: –Colors.

Jack: Colors? You mean to tell me that there is more to life than shades of gray?

Plato: There is always more than meets the eye, Jack.

A rainbow births.

Plato: Ah, there is a True Form of color now.

JackIt is a True Form or the truest form, Plato?

Plato: Let us take a walk over to the rainbow and espy it out for ourselves. It is always good to come face to face with a thing before casting a judgement onto it.

Plato & Jack walk up to the rainbow, and the rainbow disappears like they tend to do.

Jack: It is gone now?

Plato: It is gone, or it has gone somewhere else? Perhaps it is still here?

Jack: Well, if it is, I do not see it. Can something be here that seizes to be greeted by the eyes?

A breeze blows.

Plato: Do you feel this light wind, Jack?

Jack: I do, Plato.

Plato: It is here?

Jack: Indubitably.

Plato: And yet it seizes to be greeted by the eyes?

Jack: Indubitably so.

Plato: Step backwards so we may move forwards.

Plato & Jack step backwards, and the rainbow reappears.

Jack: It is here.

Plato: Indubitably.

Jack: There is always more than meets the eye.

Plato: Indubitably so, Jack.

Jack bends down to peek an eye at a caterpillar who weaves herself a cocoon.

Jack: What is this wiggly odd creature? And what does she build? It is too tight to be a home, and too stuffy to attain comfort. Perhaps it is a coffin for her own self?

Plato: Perhaps it is, Jack, but what comes after the coffin?

Jack: Rot and ruin and good fertilizer.

Plato: You are certain of this?

The caterpillar takes a deep breath, and zips the cocoon shut for completion.

Jack: Death. Should we mention a prayer, Plato?

Plato: Pray we shall.

Jack bows his head, as does Plato.

Jack: Dear Fatherly Force, may this not be an end, but a beginning.

The cocoon breaks, Jack’s eyes bulge, and a butterfly births and stretches out her wings.

Jack: Do you see this transformation, Plato? This is magnificent. This is magick. This is Divine. But is it –

Plato: — True Form?

Jack: I am stuck, Plato. This life is all new to me, and as for my entire past – I have stood and stared at nothing but the black & gray shadows on the side of a rock wall. For I do not know what a True Form is, considering every time that I clasp onto a concretized belief in a thing, it withers and slips away like water through my fingertips. What is real? Is True Form true? Perhaps it is only momentarily True, and then a new Truth is born – but then, is that a Truth? If only Lost & Soul could see the beauty and the light of Life, the shadows on the rock wall would melt and surrender into the cast of darkness for good.

Plato: The gospel is not for all, Jack.

A spider on a branch begins to weave a web.

Jack: What is that, Plato?

Plato: The invented word for this being is Spider, Jack.

Jack: (trance) You know… I’ve seen this being’s shadow before…casted upon the rock wall…so much bigger in the cave…so much more Divine in smaller form…

The spider completes a circle.

Jack: Circle. Is everything made to be circular in this life? Look there at that ball of fire to my right; what is the invented word for that, Plato?

Plato: That is the Sun, Jack.

Jack: And to my left, that far away rock that floats out yonder; there is an invented word for that, as well?

Plato: Yes, that is the Moon, Jack.

Jack: And this spider produces her home in circles. What is the circle, Plato?

Plato: It is the perfection of life, Jack, and the symbol of the Fatherly Force – with no beginning and no end.

Jack: It is a totality and a completion-symbol, as well. Is it not, Plato?

Plato: A completion that was always complete, and eternally turns.

The Spider completes the web.

Jack: It is miraculously Divine, the invention of this Spider-being, Plato. She is gifted with the body-suit to produce her own silk, and she is endowed with the mind to use it as best – and she is so very precise with it too! This web is beautifully flawless, and nature is perfectly made – like the circle. The caterpillar & the butterfly are Divine; this spider and her silk are Divine; even the birth of the colorful rainbow is a wildly Divine thing. All is Divine for all as I can tell, Plato.

Plato: Now you see.

Jack: I must report back to the cave.

Plato: The gospel is not for all, Jack.

Jack: It is no matter, Plato. So long as there are still few with an eye to see and an ear to hear, I will make it my best efforts, like the Spider, to weave The Word afar.

Jack heads back into the cave. He finds Lost & Soul in their proper places; and a hanging spider casts a large shadow onto the rock wall.

Lost: Look! Look! There it is again!

Soul: Oh, it is swinging to and fro this time! What is this reality? What do we call this real thing?

Jack: Lost & Soul, this is not a concrete reality; I have seen it with my own 2 eyes.

Lost: Ha! You fool. How may this dark spot moving along this rock wall not be a concrete reality?

Soul: Look at it go! Do you not see it moving along this rock wall? Are you a blind man, Jack?

Jack: You 2 are disillusioned and stone headed. You know not a thing of life, and even less of what there is beyond it. Your chains jingle to the heavy sound of disillusion, and you believe in nothing but the emptiness of fraudulent shadows.

Lost: Ha! Imbecile! It is real, Jack.

Soul: It is just as real as us, Jack.

From the corner of his right eye, Soul espies a glimpse of a flying bat.

Soul: Wait, what was that?

And in the swiftness of a flying moment, Soul’s chains fall.

Soul: I am free? (turns to bat) You are real? Such a liberating thing it is, to spy out a new reality.

The bat moves, and Soul follows her into the darkness.

Lost: Imbecile! Fool! Blind man!

From high up above, the hanging spider drops down onto Lost’s forehead. He murders it with a heavy hand.

Lost: Disgusting.

Plato: The Gospel is Not for All.

Abracadabra.

-Jack O’Lantern