All that glitters is not gold

My Great Aunt, Catherine Victoria Edmonstone, who was a fan of neither cats nor finance, would take me as a young child to beautiful places to watch the dawn or setting sun and recite to me lines from the poets.

One sunrise, listening to the morning song, she taught me: "All that glitters, is not gold."

Australian sunrises and sunsets are noisy. Kookaburras laugh, and magpies sing as the sheep move towards the sun. At night, as you remind me, there are riches in the sky, just out of reach. As a rule, sunsets, sunrises, and night-times don't need gold, and they do not have dragons.


I spent a lot of time with my Great Aunt as a small child. Her seanathair; her grandfather, came from Ireland. A doctor by trade, he disappeared in the Victorian goldfields after the Eureka Stockade uprising.

I remembered her telling me about the little people, the dark aelfs. She held my hand and took me to collect eggs from the bottom of her garden. As we walked, she explained that dark aelfs live in red mushrooms deep in the woods. They collect vast stores of gold coins and travel the sky using rainbows. 

She then asked me if I could keep a secret. I nodded and leaned in closer. She said she had never told anyone else. I promised to never tell. Then, she told me that the dark aelfs bury their loot at the end of their rainbows.

My Great Aunt loved rainbows and would chase them with great determination, just like I chase dragons. And yet again I saw her looking into my eyes shaking her head and saying "All that glitters, is not gold."

She brought magic into my world, and it has never left.


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