What is it inside the heart? What drives him to paddle about the lake in vain? His mossy coracle slides across the watery surface in the grey drizzle and the raindrops become a starburst of spirals all around. Shimmers of purple and green. With his paddle, he sifts about in hope, stabs the lake over and over again.
What does he think of as he wanders through the overgrown garden? The eyes that twinkled at him are no longer there. The ivy leaves have swallowed the gazebo and the roses bloom for nobody. Please don't wander off, I lose sight of you and can only wonder at the empty heavens.
Nobody kicks the scattered pebbles anymore. Nobody steps on the crunchy leaves. The rain leaves the stone walls slimy. What is he thinking when he caresses the rock? He twists the stone this way and that as he sits, nestled in the crumbling foundations. Oh, but you are a lonely fool, Ragdoe!
All those hours of catatonic silence. The moon chases the sun away and still, no sign. The perfume is no longer in the air, but it lingers in his nostrils and he cups his face in his hands. His brown hair is matted and dirty, his clothes unkempt. Yet he waits for me to come back.
I loved you because you were melancholic. I left you because you were melancholic. But still, I come back just to listen to your fingers on the piano when you finally decide to play. What drives you to pound heartache from the ivory keys? Why have you not returned Insanity's kiss, my darling Ragdoe?
I lie, shattered, amongst the thorns and petals. I watch from beneath watery depths. I sit akimbo on the broken rocks. What is love, Ragdoe? Surely not this madness with which you search for me! Has nobody told you what a breakable being a Muse is? This game of Hide & Seek wearies me, Musician.
Much has been written of the Erotes, those lovely lusty winged youths but there seems to be no literature about their sooty servant. When hearts are broken and letters are burnt, it is the little Lampblacker who comes along to clean up after the flames have died.
Dark of skin and eyes, he sweeps away the painful debris into his sack to take to his dwellings. But before he can leave, he has work to do. With a brush and a small pot of oil, he prepares a pigment made from powder dusted off his skin. Carefully, he applies the slow drying paste wherever it is needed.
The Lampblacker blots out memories. Have you never felt the coolness of his steady brush gliding over your mind? The calm rhythm brings peace and he is so silent in his work, that most of us do not even realise who brings such sweet relief. And when the last memory is painted over, he leaves as quietly as he came.
His vision is poor, the result of rubbing his own crying eyes eons ago. Poor Lampblacker! His touch is poisonous and only a balm concocted by Anteros brings him respite from time to time. Half-blind, he shuffles home with his sack of pain.
Into a pit that leads to the bottom of the world does he fling the fragments and tears. The Lampblacker dwells in a small cave where no mortal is to set foot for fear that the poor soul might tumble into that pit in the middle. Come nightfall, he sits in his shadowy garden and gazes inwards to read the secrets in his own bleak heart. In the darkness, he is home.