Before you, I was sleeping, deep in a dream far removed from lucidity. But you grabbed my hand and shook me until I opened my eyes.
You woke me up.
You woke up my body, my senses, my mind. Colors became more vibrant. Tastes became more flavorful. Smells became more complex.
You took me on adventures, showing me universes I never knew existed and corners of myself that I never thought to look in.
You told me that there was so much for me to learn and I hungered Continue reading
“Hi.” The word was warm, toasted in the sun and rolled in dulcet honeyed tones.
“Hi,” I breathed back, looking into your eyes, confirming they were the ones I remembered. That you were really there. It had been so long since I’d seen you. Since I’d heard you say hello.
You grasped Continue reading
She made her home in the hollow of an old tree. There she took shelter from the weather in the winter months, and in the spring she hung flowers out to dry from its branches.
Her days were passed by feeding the animals and conversing with them through the language of touch and gesture. She spent her nights under the stars, gazing up at the moon and singing love songs to it. For food she ate the berries, nuts, roots, and wild mushrooms that the forest gladly offered up to her.
She took no more than she needed and left no mark upon the land. Above all, she did no harm. And for this, the forest loved her.
On rare occasion, she would see Continue reading
Out in the mountains, deep in the dark of the forest where secrets are kept, I found a hiding spot. The most perfect spot to squirrel something away. A quiet, lonely spot, where no one would ever go. Where no one would ever think to look.
I went at night, when the forest was singing its praises of the cool evening air. The trip was difficult, full of tears and heavy as my heart. But the trees sung me to them, pulled me in, guided me to the spot.
And that was where I let you go. Where I left you. Where I buried you away. That was the place where I hid what was left of you from the world, so that no one would ever mention you again and Continue reading
“Won’t you come play?” the sea asked the land, lapping with gentle waves, hoping to coax the land into a game.
The land did not move. It did not say a word.
“Come dance with me,” the sea whined the next day with foaming tides and sparkling waves.
But the land stayed still, ignoring the rhythm of the water.
“Please,” the sea cried the following day. “Don’t you want to laugh with me? Don’t you love me?”
The land Continue reading
“Stand over there,” the witch said, pointing to a patch of dirt that had been cleared of the dead autumn leaves.
The girl walked slowly, head hung low, movement sluggish. She stood in the dirt, looking down at her feet, and didn’t say a word.
The witch paid her little attention as she worked, muttering incantations as she threw handfuls of herbs and flowers into the cauldron in front of her. Steam rose to the lip of the cauldron, hovering there before spilling over the edge and creeping towards the girl.
With slow, curious tendrils, the smoke round itself around her ankles. The girl twitched at its touch and made to move away.
“Don’t move!” the witch spat. “The spell won’t work if you don’t stay still!”
The girl gave a whimper, but did as she was told, rooting herself to the spot as the smoke Continue reading
“It’s cold. And it’s getting dark. I want to go home!”
Maggie rolled her eyes and ignored her little brother’s complaints. It was cold and it certainly was getting dark, but they were lost. They couldn’t go home. If they could, they wouldn’t be out in the woods, wandering around.
Joey sniffled. “Please, Maggie. Can’t we go home?”
Maggie sighed and turned around to face her brother.
“I’m trying to get us home,” she said, weariness in her voice. “But I don’t know where home is. We’re lost, Joey.”
She turned and looked around at all the trees, everything looking the same, yet somehow completely alien.
“Look,” she said finally, “there’s a hill, see, over that way?”
Joey nodded and wiped his nose on his sleeve.
“Let’s try to get up the hill before the sun goes down and see if we can see anything. Maybe we can get an idea of where our house is if we’re higher up.”
They stomped through the brush and dead leaves, hiking up the hill at a desperate pace, trying Continue reading
I found you on the shore, in the wild anarchy of the sand. Tumbling over rocks and fragments of shells, you were at the mercy of the water. So I picked you up. Plucked you from the purgatory of the tides.
I had no idea where you had been or what your story was. To me, you were new.
A bath, a towel, a dry place to sleep.
I spent the next day clinging to you, wanting you near me through each hour. And the days turned to weeks. Adventures came to us, we conquered them, we found more.
And then Continue reading
My mother and I take long walks together down the coast line. There are only a few houses, a smattering of people, between our cottage and the end of the world.
When we walk, she holds her head high and tells me of the land she came from. Of the life she fled.
“I was the queen, you know,” she says. “I ruled a whole kingdom before I came here.”
We walk, staring out at the sea and the point where it meets the sky. At the edge of all things. And when we run out of land to walk on, we turn around to retrace our steps back home.
“Why did you give it up?” I ask, wanting to know why a queen would leave her kingdom.
“I left for you. Before Continue reading
“Water!” the girl giggled, clapping her hands in an anticipation that betrayed her youth.
The man peered into the worn leather pouch. His knotted hands moved slowly – as apparent a marker of his age as the grey hairs in his beard and his outward calm.
“I’ve already done water for you before.” His words were a half-distracted murmur. More of a disclaimer than an beratement.
“Yes, but that one is my favorite.”
An understanding nod. A furrowed brow. Then the token emerged from the bag, pinched between the man’s fingers.
The man held the token up between his eyes – a small, curved coin that approximated the shape of a cresting wave, detailed with Continue reading