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The Magic Bed of Tucuman

Here is a copy of my children's story .

The Magic Bed of Tucumán

By Alexandra Newton Rios


My name is Gabriel.

I have a magic bed.

All I have to do is spin my globe of the world

before I go to sleep.

Where my finger lands

when it stops

is where I will go.

The wood of my magic bed

is quebracho.

It comes from Amaicha

high up in the mountains

above Tucumán.

The Diaguitas lived there.

They are different than the Incas

or the Spanish.

The Quebracho is a sacred tree.

It is the only tree of my family’s village.

It grew a very long time before

my great grandfather

who was a holy man

broke off four of its most majestic branches

and saved them for ten years.

He carved the wood into my bed.

The bed belonged to my grandfather.

Then to my father.

Now it is mine.

It is why we have vision.

I lie on my bed.

Close my eyes.

I always visit the ocean first.

I smell the flowers of Provence

and then I am in Switzerland.

I am climbing, climbing, climbing

the mountain to Montana Crans.

I speak French.


J’aime le matin.


I love the morning.

The mountain is hard to climb.

My magic bed gives me strength.

I want a friend to travel with me.

Will you come?

My bed will make your bed

a magic bed.

Close your eyes.

Take my hand.

We go to the ocean first.

Smell the salt.

The vastness without a horizon.

The sand.

The seagulls.

Then climb the mountain with me.

Here is an ice pick for you.

Tie yourself to me.

We won’t fall.

I won’t let you.

We are at Mont Blanc.

We are one.

Snow is everywhere.

C’est tres beau.

It is very beautiful.

There is a blue feather on the snow.

I will take it back.

The snow is so soft,

white, everywhere

like my happiness

that I have a new friend.

Good night.

I hear three knocks

against my large wooden door.

Siesta time is over.

Go back and play outside.

Kick a ball.

Ride your bicycle.

Play cards.

You don’t have to prepare

for your next trip.


You are back again.

I hope you are not too tired.

My magic bed will rest you.

I spin the globe of the world.

My finger lands on Tibet.

Ta shee day lay

Hello to the tallest mountains

in the world.

We climb to a hanging monastery.

The corridors are long.

They hug the mountain.

There is stone everywhere.

I will be a holy man someday.

I want to help others.

Today we climb the mountain

with horses.

I call my horse Fierce Winged Feet

because she runs like the wind.

You can ride with me.

This river is so clear.

Fierce Winged Feet drinks deeply.

I, too, drink from its waters

for it is sacred.

We arrive at the mountains

of illumination.

These mountains we must not climb.

They are the sacred mountains

of the Bonpo, Buddhist and Hindu.

I meet a Bonpo shaman.

He belongs to the original people

of Tibet

before the Buddhists and Hindu.

He gives me a small diamond

that was passed down to him

from his great grandfather.

He tells me to save it

for my sister

when I return home.

She must save it and give it

to her first great grandchild.

We circle the holy mountains

with the other pilgrims.

The pilgrims usually take

four days.

My magic bed will help us

return by morning.

T’oo-Je-Che Thank you

mountains for growing tall with beauty.

Oh precious jewels of the snow,

T’oo-Je-Che Thank you

for watching over Winged Feet,

my friend

and me.

No feet can touch

the summits of the sacred mountains

unless they are pure.

My magic bed will cleanse us.

I hear a knock on the door.

It is long and insistent.

We must return.

Good night.


I have rested.

How wonderful to sleep deeply.

Today I spin the globe of the world.

My finger lands on Machu Picchu.

Home of the Incas.

But first we touch the Pacific.

Breathe its blue calm.

Dip our feet in Lake Titicaca.

I dreamt of these mountains

before I ever came here.

Now we shall climb to the top

slowly, steadily.

My magic bed lets our feet

leap with the alpaca.

First the mist turns pink

before the sun arrives

like a red bird

over the top of Machu Picchu.

Oh Old Mountain

Paschi thank you,

for your beauty.

For the Incas the sun is God

who loves the moon.

He gives a new day as a gift

to us and to his love the moon.

What will you do with the gift?

I take a round soft stone

that is shaped like an arrow

from the path.

Where will it lead us?

I will put it under my magic bed.

Let us harness our strength

like the water harnessed

by the Incas into a passageway

down the mountain.

We run next to it

all the way down!

If we are pure in our mind

Machu Picchu will show us everything.

The mountain looks like a face.

We smile back.

We are home.

The sun is setting on the trail.

We must get back.

Good night.


I spin my finger on the globe of the world

and feel light rain

dancing a mist around the summit

of Mt. Rainier.

We watch a bald eagle

and the northern spotted owl

spread their wings for us.

In the northern Pacific the choppy waters

are cold to my feet.

We are southeast of Seattle, Washington.

The rain turns into a light coat

made of rainbows.

We put our rainbow coats on.

We are warm again.

The rain turns into snow.

Let’s run in the snow fields

of Mt. Rainier.

Everyone calls her The Mountain.

The Puyallup used to call her Tacoma

Mother of Waters.

We swim in the Nisqually River.

Snow covers the volcano.

Look, a piece of lava stone!

It looks like a little boat.

We float it on our river.

You take it home with you.

You are my best friend.

The Mountain waits.

It knows everything like a mother.

Our mothers wait for us.

We must return with the magic bed.

Good night.


I spin the globe.

Elidir Fawr in Snowdonia, North Wales

waits for us tonight.

Dia Duit. Good Morning.

But first we must breathe the air,

feel the cool water of Lake Marchlyn Mawr.

Go raibh maith agait.

Thank you waters.

We arrive to the Black Mountains.

of Wales.

Let us travel inside the slate tunnels

of Elidir Fawr.

I will take this tunnel.

You take the other.

I will meet you at the top.

Don’t be afraid.

My magic bed will give you power

to go through darkness

to the light.

We must travel alone

to reach the top,

to reach the light.


When I spin the globe tonight

my finger finds Mount Sinai.

We must first salute the birds

of the Red Sea.

In Mount Sinai

the angels of the world

are fighting.

There is a special light

that the people carry inside them.

We want to help them.

Let us lend the angels what we have kept safe

in our magic bed.

Here is the feather,

the diamond,

the arrow stone.

Do you have your lava rock?

They become four swords.

They will restore peace in the world

without blood.

Sleep well tonight.

The End.

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