Sunday, August 16

Sanctuary of Ruin: Touring Western Australia's Piano

"Legend has it that when an elephant becomes aware its own death is imminent, it leaves the herd and travels alone to a final resting place known by instinct, an arched cathedral of bleached bones and ivory known as the elephant graveyard. Here all past elephants have converged, creating a reverent repository of sorts. The graveyard is thought apocryphal but some facets of the myth ring true: elephants do venerate the bones of their dead, especially the ivory, carrying the tusks about or gently rolling them back and forth beneath their sensitive feet. And elephant remains are often found en masse; perhaps due to ivory-poaching massacres or the tendency of older elephants to congregate around waterholes where plants are soft on the palate. The myth conjures a mysterious place, heavy with memory and metaphor, where one might ruminate on lost things, the majesty of life, and the inevitability of ruin. And on treasure. ..."