Where Sky Meets Land

January 11, 2010
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I live in a world where everything seems, on the surface, to be inexplicably perfect. It is a place where all of your simple wishes are granted. A place to dream, change your mind, and aspire once again. There are a thousand words for beauty and my home fits each one of them.

Where I come from, the Earth ripples in a dance of rounded mountains. They stand still, photo worthy, until you turned your back- at which point they would move and shift, whispering secrets to one another. The trees leap in brilliant shades of green forests. Flowers bloom in every color- including those you’ve never seen- and run wild across meadow floors. When you are quiet, the world will speak to you. When you are at peace, it will sing. The songs are both ancient and brand new, being revised each time they escape the ground from which they are born. But, no matter how it seems, this world is not entirely perfect.

The winter my brother went away was colder than usual. The autumn skies were still bleeding reds and yellows when snow began to dust the mountaintops. The chill itself seemed to hail from the hard, frozen ground. As often as I dare, I venture forth to a kingdom where the air was always a little warmer, where the sun shone a little brighter. The palace sits on a hill, and while the castle is imaginary, the comfort it provides is real.

My kingdom is enclosed on three sides by thick, towering, mountain trees. That winter, their bare arms reached overhead, sheltering me in a canopy of gray. To the north, all that remains is a crumbling stone fireplace with ivy crawling up its back. A wooden swing with rusty chains creaks in the breeze. The breeze that also stirs the tall grass in the meadows below. It ripples like ocean waves, and its voice is carried to me on the wind. It says that the world is still. Waiting- always waiting.

That winter, I forgot what it felt like to be warm. I would dream of easy summers under green leaves, singing with the birds, and wish I could go to my kingdom. But the real world kept grabbing me by the collar and yanking me back. Reality was demanding, chaotic, and cold. My day to day life felt so unlike my time in the woods.

Some might say a clearing at the crest of a hill was ordinary. They would be wrong. Because here, the air simmered with magic possibility. The view isn’t breathtaking. Instead, it fills your lungs with sweet, frosty air. I revel in the simple splendor- the feeling that you’re the only person in the world. The indigo mountains rose up around me and green fields extended to the mouths of red barns. Flat, smooth stones covered the ground. They’d seen the love of friendship and the sorrow of goodbye. They knew all of the answers, but didn’t bother to share them with the mortal world. Here, at this place, you can hide where everyone can see you. You could reach out and touch the clouds just to see what it would feel like. The mystery and intrigue- the feeling of being alive- this is what draws me there.

The woods in the valley is where I wish upon stars without having anything to wish for. I can see the tops of the earth, kissing the clouds. It’s as if you sit in the hands of God. This is where sky meets land.

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