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Merlin and the Maze April 8, 2012

Posted by nrhatch in Fiction, Magick & Mystery, Mindfulness.

Wikipedia ~ Le Morte d’Arthur (in Public Domain)

We reached the centre of the maze, and I spied a bronze plaque, “This is the centre, you now have two choices.” 

What?  Find our way out, or stay and starve to death?

I looked down at my shoelaces . . . untied again!  Anyone would think they were alive and seeking freedom.

I bent to tie the lace and noticed an odd shape in the ground, a portion of a circle.

I kicked at it and the friable soil moved away, disclosing a brass ring, attached by another ring to a wooden trapdoor. 

I looked at Merlin, “do you suppose this is the second choice?”

Without responding, Merlin turned away from the trapdoor and started to retrace our steps out of the maze.

I chased after him, “Aren’t you the least bit curious?”

“Not at all.”

“Why not?  Don’t you want to see what’s on the other side?”

Wikipedia ~ Maze (in Public Domain)

Merlin stopped in his tracks, “Why did the chicken cross the road?”

“To get to the other side.”

“Exactly.”  With that, he marched on.

“Merlin, I don’t understand.  What do chickens crossing the road have to do with that trapdoor?”

“Nothing.  And everything.”

Archimedes flew overhead, “Of course, you don’t understand, boy.  You never do.  At this rate, Excalibur will be left without an owner for another millenia.”

I glanced up, “What?  . . . Who?  . . . Excalibur?”

Archimedes laughed at my discomfiture, “Hoo . . . Hoo.”

Merlin marched on . . . robes flying.

I trudged after him, doing my best to keep up, fighting the urge to turn around.

As we exited the maze, Merlin spoke, “Archimedes has a point, Arthur.”

Archimedes nodded in agreement, “Sharp talons too!”

Annoyed at them both, I jutted my chin out and glared at Merlin, “Where are we going?”

Merlin met and held my gaze, “I thought you wanted to know about the other side of the trapdoor.”

Wikipedia ~ Merlin (in Public Domain)

“I did.  I do.  But, Merlin . . . ”

“Come then.  We’re off to consult the Book of Ways.”

“The Book of Ways?  What’s that?”

Archimedes flapped his wings, “The most potent portal of all.”

Merlin slowed and draped an arm across my shoulders, “Arthur, life is a maze . . .  with magic and mystery behind each hidden door.”

“That’s why I . . . ”

“. . . but if you stop to explore every rabbit hole that attracts your attention, you’ll be lost, like Alice, and never reach your destiny.”

“Wait?  What?  . . . I have a destiny?”

“Indeed you do, Arthur . . . Camelot awaits.”

Related posts:  Sidey’s Weekend Theme ~ The Centre of the Maze * The Centre of the Maze (Kate Shrewsday) * Gee!  It’s A-Maze-Ing! (PTC) * The Trapdoor (Love’s Camel) * It Was All A Dream (ElspethC)


1. Nicola - April 8, 2012

Brilliant 🙂

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

Thanks, Nicola! Sidey got the ball rolling and the wheels turning with this theme, didn’t she?

Nicola - April 8, 2012

Yes, lots of possibilities 😉

2. kateshrewsday - April 8, 2012

Ah, there: I had Lewis Carroll down for this from the very beginning. Perfect sense of dream unreality, fantastic post with a solid, down to earth conclusion. Doorways can be so tempting can’t they, unless you have a plan…

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

Thanks, Kate. I considered sending them off to consult with Dumbledore and his pensieve at Hogwarts, but I wasn’t certain that Archimedes would mesh well with the Phoenix.

If Arthur had opened the trapdoor, perhaps he would have been met by the Cheshire Cat’s ubiquitous grin, or by the Mad Hatter trying to evade the Red Queen as she cried, “Off with his head.”

Shades of Henry VIII’s there, of course.

Here’s to foolhardy jesters and gestures! 😆

3. CMSmith - April 8, 2012

Very impressive writing. With good humor.

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

Thanks, Christine. Sidey’s theme provides the excuse to flex beyond the ordinary . . . this week in particular. 😀

4. viviankirkfield - April 8, 2012

Wow! How powerful! Nancy, this is amazing. I’ve been struggling with the time management of my blogging/commenting/work/taking care of home/professional writing.

“Life is a maze, but if you stop to explore every rabbit hole that attracts your attention, you’ll be lost, like Alice, and never reach your destiny.”

I love that…it touches a chord in my soul and helps me realize that I need to make some choices when it comes to exploring all of the rabbit holes that attract my attention. 🙂

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

Exactly what I was thinking as I wrote it, Vivian!

It’s tempting to wander through every cyber-portal we encounter, but visiting each enticing “rabbit hole” will consume all available time . . . and then some. So, as you’ve noted, we must pick and choose.

Glad you enjoyed visiting this “rabbit hole” . . . on Easter!

5. Pocket Perspectives - April 8, 2012

What? what?…I shouldn’t stop at every rabbit hole???? …but..but..but… they’re so interesting and might contain treasures!…
Okay…I’m supposed to be making appetizers and getting ready to go to someone’s house for dinner….and I got distracted…I got interested in making pages instead of doing what I was supposed to do… choices, choices, choices…and this story and that quote sure grabbed my attention : )

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

Enjoy dinner . . . hope your appetizers are a hit! Have fun.

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

I just checked out the page you made . . . I love it!!! Thanks, Kathy. 😀

6. souldipper - April 8, 2012

Nancy, this is a fabulous bit of writing. Mon Dieu…do more! I’m serious – I was sure you slipped in an excerpt from one Mary Stewart’s books! It’s YOU!

nrhatch - April 8, 2012

Thanks, Amy! What a lovely comment to receive ~ I devoured Mary Stewart books as a teen (Hollow Hills, Crystal Cave, Nine Coaches Waiting, The Gabriel Hounds, and . . . Touch Not The Cat, our clan motto!).

I used to write more fiction than I do at present ~ it’s always fun writing snippets of dialogue like this . . . especially with notable characters like Merlin, Arthur, and Archimedes (the talking owl).

7. JOriginal Muse - April 8, 2012

Gosh, and I was going to invite you in for some tea at my new rabbit hole, Nancy… I just started blogging with Blog Spot, where my daughter is blogging.

I never realized until yesterday, that when I signed up here, I was actually creating a profile to blog. What do I know? I must have slipped into a rabbit hole without looking at the address.

Anyhow, I see how easy it is to get trapped in the Cyberspace maze. But I will know when to step away from the keyboard. Like right now…! But before I run, I just want to say I’m glad I did drop into your rabbit hole.. It was Merlin who invited me in. He’s always been a keeper in my book… Great hook, I might add…! 😉

nrhatch - April 9, 2012

Of course, I’ll stop in for tea at your rabbit hole, Joanne ~ just toss me the link.

Wasn’t it magic (talking jeans on WEbook) that hooked us up to begin with ~ lots of water over the cyberdam since then, eh?

8. sweetdaysundertheoaks - April 9, 2012

What a delightful read Nancy!

nrhatch - April 9, 2012

Thanks, Pix! Sidey’s themes inspire FUN!

9. bluebee - April 9, 2012

“Wait?  What?  . . . I have a destiny?” – a profound question 🙂 What Merlin doesn’t seem to understand is that it’s all about the journey – Camelot can wait

nrhatch - April 9, 2012

I agree, BB . . . but maybe it’s different when you’re looking at life through a backwards telescope, like Merlin. 😀

10. ceceliafutch - April 9, 2012

“Life is a maze, but if you stop to explore every rabbit hole that attracts your attention, you’ll be lost, like Alice, and never reach your destiny.”

Most powerful statement of all . . . and very apropos for me right now! I LOVED this post!

nrhatch - April 9, 2012

Thanks, Cecelia! We have to be on our guard or time “evaporates” into thin air . . . especially in cyber-space.

Just found you in my SPAM folder . . . sorry that WP is picking on you today.

ceceliafutch - April 9, 2012

Ahhhh . . . breathe. All will be well (I say to myself.) I will let WP problems drift away as I get back into the swing of coursework. When I return to regular blogging in 10 weeks, WP will be my friend again. 😉

nrhatch - April 10, 2012

Good plan ~ last week, I was spinning my wheels. Today, problems started to resolve themselves.

Aah . . . that’s better!

11. sufilight - April 9, 2012

Wow, this is brilliant, Nancy you were able to bring attention to a spiritual truth in an entertaining way. I stopped exploring every rabbit hole many years ago and without this distraction finding my treasure was revealed. 🙂

nrhatch - April 9, 2012

Thanks, Marie! I had lots of FUN with Merlin.

Life comes at us fast and is FULL of distractions ~ it’s up to us to pick and choose where to center our focus.

12. Three Well Beings - April 9, 2012

You made such significant points using the best in imagery and storytelling. And such creativity in the process! Debra

nrhatch - April 9, 2012

Thanks, Debra!

I enjoyed working with Sidey’s prompt ~ it reminded me that, if we listen, our “Inner Merlin” guides us away from the “wrong” rabbit holes, creating space for what matters.

13. wightrabbit - April 10, 2012

A-maze-ing! A simple tale, told with w light touch, yet carrying deeper meaning. Thank you, Nancy.

nrhatch - April 10, 2012

Thanks, Jacqueline! Exactly what I desire ~ to entertain and inspire thought . . . in few words. 😀

14. SidevieW - April 11, 2012

Wonderful. TH White would have loved it

nrhatch - April 11, 2012

“It is a pity that there are no big creatures to prey on humanity. If there were enough dragons and rocs, perhaps mankind would turn its might against them. Unfortunately man is preyed upon by microbes, which are too small to be appreciated.”
― T.H. White, The Book of Merlyn: The Unpublished Conclusion to The Once & Future King

SidevieW - April 11, 2012

a smart man indeed

nrhatch - April 11, 2012

Definitely had a handle on learning as an antidote for life. 😀

15. eof737 - April 22, 2012

Yep, we all need to limit our exposure to those rabbit holes… I’m on it. 😦

nrhatch - April 24, 2012

It’s tempting to wander through every cyber-portal we encounter, but visiting each enticing “rabbit hole” will consume all available time . . . and then some.

16. Team Oyeniyi - April 24, 2012

WOW! 😀

nrhatch - April 24, 2012

Thanks, Robyn! I need to do another of these moralistic “fables.”

17. dearrosie - March 29, 2013

so many layers of story here.. love it…
This is a great sentence:
“Arthur, life is a maze . . . with magic and mystery behind each hidden door.”

I’d love to walk in mazes like these. Did you take the photos?

nrhatch - March 30, 2013

Life is a labyrinth. All the photos are from Wikipedia ~ Merlin and Mazes = Perfect Together. 😀

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