A Gray Dream

May 25, 2012
By LemonJuicer BRONZE, Hagerstown, Maryland
LemonJuicer BRONZE, Hagerstown, Maryland
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and if all else remained, and he were annihilated, the universe would turn to a mighty stranger: I should not seem a part of it."
Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights, Ch.9

I trudge through the snow. My thick, fur-lined boots drag across the mounds of white crystal, pushing down to the frozen rock below. My eyes sweep across the landscape and I see emptiness. Complete and despairing emptiness, save for a flash of gray against the blindingly white background. I do a double take and see it standing there.

A tree. Simple, alone, and determined as it stands among the blankness, with its spindly branches bowed from many centuries withstanding the fierce winds. I stand still for a moment, feeling the sogginess of wet snow in my socks, feeling the bite of frosty wind on my cheeks, feeling the heavy burden of loneliness on my shoulders.

Somehow, I find the strength to move my sore, frozen muscles towards the tree. The edge of my boot is caught on a piece of ice and I go sprawling across the soft snow, my inky curls creating a striking contrast against the whiteness. The cold creeps even further into me, reaching down to my bones with its icy fingers, turning my blood to slush, stealing my warmth. In a way, I pity the poor, lonely cold. It has no warmth of its own. It has been consumed by jealousy and it now holds a terrible wanting. The same wanting I feel now. The wanting of warmth.

I look up at the frozen tree and I know that its own rough bark has also been penetrated by the icy fingers of the bitter cold, that its warmth has also been stolen, that it also has the wanting. And yet it still stands, and so I will stand. My feet are under me again and I slog--no, I march. I march to the tree, wrapping my arms around its thick trunk, struggling to find the little warmth left inside of me so that I can share it with the freezing thing. Its knobby arms embrace me, welcoming me.

Welcoming a friend who knows its pain.

When I open my eyes, there is no tree. There is no cold. There is no emptiness. I am in a warm bed, beside my warm husband, in my warm home, where my warm children sleep but a wall away.

"Just a dream." I whisper to myself, struggling to stop the insistent trembling that grips my soul. "Just a gray dream."

The author's comments:
This story came to me when I was looking through some pictures and found one of a tree, standing gray and alone in a sea of snow. I whipped this small piece up one night and have been editing it ever since. I just hope that you won't regret having read it.

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