Monday, February 20, 2017


- protection, grounding, healing -

Nephele wakes up. She promptly turns over and picks up her phone, clicking the home button. 9:45, the clock reads. 9:45?? She thinks. She hasn’t slept that late in ages. Nephele tries to recall her nightmare from the night before but she comes up empty. Is it possible that she hadn’t had a nightmare that night?


The light is streaming in through my apartment window, and for the first time in ages I feel hope swelling in my chest like a balloon getting filled with helium. Is it possible that the old man from the park really got rid of my nightmares? Everything feels soft and new again, I feel as if I am walking on eggshells now because I don’t want this feeling to go away.

Nephele pulls her nose out of her journal, and touches her obsidian necklace. A look of determination settles on her face as she decides that she must go and question the old man. Nephele pulls on black jeans and a corduroy jacket before leaving her apartment, a small bounce in the way she walks. The air smells like flowers, the perfume only adding to her feeling of newness and happiness. Nephele notices that the town had been adorned with flowers, she stops and picks one, slipping it into her journal. After entering the park, she searches for the old man and the boy who just yesterday sat under an old oak tree, when she arrives at the tree she finds nothing but a pair of porcelain salt and pepper shakers. She picks them up, the smooth material cold on her skin. She finds that her eyes are swelling with tears, like her happiness depended on finding the pair of men. Dropping the salt and pepper shakers, she heads to St. Cecelia’s.

The feeling of dread has returned to Nephele, and as she sits on a bench underneath a magnolia tree, the light shining through the branches dappling her legs, she begins to cry. It has been a long time since Nephele has allowed herself to cry. She has always seen it as a sign of weakness, and she was supposed to be anything but. But sitting here crying Nephele can’t explain why she was chose now to break,  nothing bad had happened. But the lump of dread in her throat has now grown to be a blanket of dread covering her body. She is lost, completely dumbfounded when it came to what she is supposed to do now. So, Nephele cries, clutching the stone around her neck that is supposed to be protecting, healing her.


- wisdom, balance, peace -

Nephele’s dreams trouble her for a week and she wakes many times, having trouble falling back to sleep each time. Eventually she gives up on trying to find any peace and decides to write instead what she dreamed.

There was a green film that covered everything; it looked as though through a piece of murky cellophane. I remember there was blood, and a man. He was yelling but I couldn’t hear him. It’s gotten louder each night.


Nephele woke up one morning to find the city draped in a thick fog, the kind the tops of buildings like to disappear into. Nephele is the type of person whose mood is affected by the weather, and today she feels like a wet washcloth has been draped over her face. She stands and pads across her apartment, coming to stand in front of the fridge, where she finds a bottle of Sriracha and an apple on the white shelves. That meal doesn’t seem particularly appetizing to her, so she pulls on a pair of jeans, tucks her long shirt into it, and slips her feet into a pair of paint stained black converse. Her steps waver at the door of the apartment building, and she can’t quite figure out the reason why. She pushes her way through the doors anyways, despite the little voice in the back of her head telling her not to. She has grown accustomed to not listening to that voice.

Clutching her worn moleskine journal to her chest, she lowers her head and plunges into the fog. Ignoring her growing dread, she walks on towards the pizza place by St. Cecelia’s, suddenly hearing a voice cut through the fog.

“You there, in the converse.”

Nephele moves towards the voice, her curiosity outweighing the bad feeling manifesting itself as a lump in her throat. Emerging from the fog there is a small man, his wrinkles etching canyons through his face accompanied by a small boy with silver duct tape on his mouth.

“I sense there is something bothering you, I can relieve that for a small price.” The old man utters. Something inside of Nephele possesses her to tell him that she will do anything to stop the dreams that plague her during the night.

“Give me your arm, Nephele.” Her breath catches in her throat yet she extends her arm anyways. The man reaches out and winds his spindly fingers around his wrist, his knuckles pressing into her skin. With his other hand he reaches into his pocket and takes out a small dagger. He drags the blade across her skin and a dark red liquid bubbles up from her skin. The boy produces a slide and takes a drop of her blood. Nephele is too shocked to do anything about this strange ritual. Finally, the man speaks;

“How terrible--to see the truth, when the truth is only pain to him who sees.”

Thursday, December 15, 2016


- strength, problem-solving, insight -

Nephele sleeps terribly throughout the night, twisting and turning as her dreams berate her with misshapen images and faint songs. she wakes up at 3am from a dream about a forest. the trees the forest extended so high into the sky that their trunks were consumed by the clouds before one could catch a glimpse of the top. she feels uneasy and decides to get up to grab a glass of water before descending back into her fitful sleep, but the sink yields no liquid as she turns the knob. crawling back into bed she stares at her bedroom ceiling considering a piece of peeling paint as her eyes become heavy once again.


it is noon.

Nephele awakes, her throat incredibly dry. when she tries the faucet this time she is disappointed that what she hoped had been a dream was, in fact, reality. she opens the fridge and grabs a juice box, the last one. she takes one sip and decides to ration it for the remainder of the day as she has run out of money for the week.

with nothing to do and a steady feeling of discomfort Nephele dresses warmly and grabs an old book, “the meaning of Stones, stars, and spells.” she makes her way to her safe place, St. Cecelia’s cathedral and sits on the still wet grass. she reads.


it is 3pm.

Nephele is deep into her book, again finding herself on a page on Lapis Lazuli, when she hears her.

“interesting title.” a voice says. Nephele jumps, startled.

“I find it extremely informative. I don't believe in witchcraft. I like collecting stones...they've got a certain draw you know?" she responds shyly, unsure of herself. the girl is wearing a Turquoise necklace and Nephele gives her a small smile as she recalls that the gemstone is widely considered the cousin of Lapis Lazuli. "you's all about the energy."

the girls talk briefly, exchanging names; her name is colette.
“it’s funny, i was just reading about Lapis Lazuli when you came up.” Nephele says, segueing out of the small talk.

“oh, really? isn’t that one associated with truth?”

“yeah… and friendship and wisdom and awareness.” Nephele smiles again, the feeling is somewhat unfamiliar.


it is 9pm and Nephele writes.

I made a friend and she understands.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Dalmatian Jasper

- alleviated negativity, nightmares / / new patience -

Nephele is an early riser, but today she sleeps later than usual. she might have even slept longer if she hadn't been woken up by a sharp knock on her door.

her eyes are still heavy with sleep as she rolls out of bed, literally, on to the floor with a quiet thud. sitting up and then standing up she pats her brown hair down and smoothes her t-shirt before she goes to the door.

she looks through the peephole she sees a short, balding man with a 5 o'clock shadow and a slight scowl.

another knock.


"are you available, for an interview?" the stout man drawls the ends of his phrases.

Nephele backs away from the door in both confusion and fear, people don't knock on her door, they know not to. several years ago a UPS man had come up to her door to deliver a package and, long story short, the day ended with an ambulance, a broken table, and a small order of breadsticks.

"uh, sorry. no."

"ma'am, it will only take about 10 minutes, maybe even less. i'd be very appreciative."

Nephele's heart races and her hands shake, but she reaches for the door and soon looks down upon the pushy little man. she had to try.

she motions towards the lumpy couch against the wall, inviting the man inside.

"thank you ma'am" he nods and waddles inside, "now, what is your name? and how did you get here?"

"my names nephele, pronounced neff-eh-lee, neil and i live here with my aunt. well, kind of. she's rarely here. she just pays the rent really..." nephele trails, wishing she hadn't invited the man inside as she grew more and more uncomfortable.

"tell me about that name." the man replies, furiously scribbling on his notepad.

"Nepehele, the goddess of hospitality and the mother of centaurs. she was a cloud that zeus created to look like Hera in order to test ixion in containing his lust for Hera. he failed and fathered the centaurs. she is a forgotten one and not so individual in the eyes of many, as she was created in the image of Hera." Nephele picks at the skin on her fingers, gritting her teeth, "i'm sorry but i don't think i have it in me to continue this interview."

before the man knows better he is being ushered out of the door and soon stands in the hall, dumfounded by his interaction with such a strange girl.


again Nephele sits down to write.

my name suits me in more ways than one. i am forgotten. i am fragile like the clouds that occupy my name. nephele. nephele. nephele. even my last name argues my lack of permanence.

Nephele stops and rips out the page, tossing it in the trash. she sits down to read. set in stone lies open in her lap to a page on Chiastolite. it reads "Chiastolite can be helpful during a state of change, assisting one to traverse disquieting situations and to gain a foothold in the new. It can also be used for problem solving and to provide insight to answers to mysterious occurrences."


- remembered dreams, meditation, prophecy -

"did you see the clouds today?"
"no, i missed them i suppose"

Nephele lays in the grey twilight, soon to be drenched in darkness, talking to no one.

...or perhaps there is someone, but they can not be seen.


fumbling for her keys, Nephele drops her stack of books. she has been reading on the lawn of St. Cecilia's cathedral. it is the only place she feels safe from the almost eerie atmosphere of the city. often, it feels as though she is being watched. by someone. by something.

entering her modest apartment, she sighs, letting the door hang open as she tosses book after book onto the floor of her living room.

a collection of poems by anonymous authors

another on the meanings of stones

and one discussing Newton's laws and their deeper implications

Nephele is an avid collector of stones and gems. she figures that something from the earth must have a natural aspect of power.

"it's all about the energy." she says into her 1986 tape recorder, "the law of conservation of energy. it states that the total energy of an isolated system must remain constant. is that not applicable to our planetary ecosystem? the energy we possess must go somewhere. why not a stone?"

later that night Nephele lays in bed awake. unable to shut her thoughts out.  

she decides to write as she often does in times like these. the lights do not come on when she flicks the switch so she lights a candle instead.

i can't. i can't. i can't. i can't shake the feeling that something big is coming. that something will be revealed to me sooner than later. something that will change everything.

shit. i forgot to pay the rent again.