Covered in ice, Europa is one of the four of Galilean moons of Jupiter. It is slightly smaller than the Earth’s moon, and it is the sixth largest one in the solar system. Named after Europa, the mother of King Minos and lover of Zeus, the moon is the cold diamond satellite on the neck of space.
I say covered in ice, when really its crust is an ice-water combination, rupturing and freezing in parts, scarring the planet in darker slashes that glow red and rust brown from a distance. The temperature of its surface is about -160°C; bone shatteringly cold and uninhabitable.
But it’s underneath where life begins.
Under the ice crust, but not solely to reside, lie the vast ice cities. Forged out of the frozen nitrogen and comet dust, these vast and palatial cityscapes warren through the planets mantel, each one a testament to design and solar freezing, which bathes the subterranean spaces in a light form that breathes like that of a plant. The air heaves and flows like a tide, washing the buildings and inhabitants in a cosmic breath.
It was here that the girl came from. Deep beneath the ice sheets that, on radiation days she would crack the surface to explore, the girl broke out of the fallen star that signalled her birth. She grew fast, and showed a curiosity that was not usually found in the others around her. Her family were close however, other shards of the same galaxy that collapsed and contracted, reduced down to the tiny crystal balls that grew like eggs, hatching new life. She held an especially strong bond with her particle-father, who nurtured her imagination and curious ways and loved her very much
Though their lives seem strange and distant, their family dynamics are not far removed from those human ones on earth. One example of this is ‘Creation extol’.
Much in the same way as celebrating a birthday, those on Europa celebrate the day of which you were created. It sounds more clinical than it actually is, for the day itself is full of laughter, dance and gift giving. The best part of Creation Extol, and all would agree on this, is the song and dance that is sung called ‘OOcite’. The rules of the dance are as so:
Rules of ‘OOcite’
- Break off into groups of threes.
- Each one has a small pillar of ice in each hand (the size of regular pillar candle).
- You can only have three colours to your pillar: Rust red, Blue or Green and these can’t be mixed. (The one who’s creation day it is, will have a Black one. The meaning behind each colour is significant.)
- As the music begins, the song is sung [lyrics below] and everyone begins to move around holding their ice pillars out in front of them in their palms.
- As the song has a magical property, and only when sung in unison, the ice will begin to emit a glow based on the colour you’ve chosen. They will project an image in front of you between the two pillars (making something that looks like a tv screen).
- Here you can view moments past, present and future.
As the colours signify which, here they are:
Rust red – Past events
Blue – Present happenings*
Green – Future moments**
Black – projects paths and choices to be made to benefit the viewer in the year ahead (a cosmic guide, so to speak)
*This can be from anywhere in the galaxy and beyond.
**As the future is harder to see, the green pillars of ice burn away faster than the others.
- The participants move and rotate like spinning dervishes, graceful and humble.
- The song is repeated until all the pillars have melted away.
- Once the pillars are gone, the colour glows from the ice will fly off and merge, exploding on the one celebrating their creation (think the Hindu Holi festival).
- A large meal follows the dance usually.
Lyrics for ‘OOcite’:
Your days reach forth like fingers of Gods.
Into the palm we dance.
We fall and fold like happenstance.
Frozen like tears in trance.
Each hand in time and eyes of Nara.
View what we wish to see.
Like lunar shells from illumi-trees.
That spark the light within our seas.
So now we peel back the skin of life.
To extol (insert name).
Into hearts, and into heads.
Our love we weave and thread.
Our love we weave and thread.
It isn’t unknown for someone to usually add another verse once the initial song is complete and all the ice pillars have melted. These usually take on a ‘roasting’ nature, playfully poking fun but without any mean spiritedness.
Fact – One such OOcite song/dance went on for 8 hours straight. But as one day on Europa is equal to 85 hrs on earth, this doesn’t seem too long really. They usually only last 30 ‘earth’ minutes.
Read the story ‘White/Blue‘