That Which You Cannot Imagine This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

December 3, 2011
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I find myself standing in an old steel roller coaster car. Everything is gray; my skin, my clothes, and the dry, wispy grass that is growing on either side of the coaster tracks, which are embedded in the earth that is the side of a steep hill. The top of the hill is so high up; I can barely see the sky - only silvery grass and this dull, zigzagging roller coaster track. The car is slowly sailing towards the hill’s peak, from which emits a serene glow. The air is still, or nonexistent, but heavy with silence; there are no smells, and there are no breezes. (I’m not even sure if I am breathing.) I feel calm and light, and my mind is quiet. I can’t even feel my body, which is now a mere wrapping that encases the swirl of thoughts that is my soul. As the top of the hill edges near, the wind picks up and the grass begins to gleam a bit, resembling a field of slender mirrors. A solid wall of crisp wind shatters the silence and engulfs the car and I am standing on a plateau of shimmering, golden wheat. I can feel everything. Each stem reflects the searing sunlight; the ground itself is swimming with light. My bare feet sink into the cool soil. It is heavy and soft on my skin, like flour. I don’t wonder where I am and I don’t think; instead, I feel the landscape. I take in the scene. The wheat lightly caresses the backs of my knees and fondles the branches of thick, dark pine trees that pepper the landscape – odd shadowy masses floating on a sea of gold. The sun floods the sky and sparkles off the tips of the waves. An audience of clouds moves through the air, great plumes of mist outlined in an alabaster glow, an array of white-hot contours against an unbelievable periwinkle sky. I feel like I’m floating. This is the afterlife.

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