Walking Without Shoes This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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The snow is finally gone and the sun has been shining bright for three days. Just last week it was -5 degrees with blowing winds and four feet of snow, and now I’m walking outside in shorts and a tank top, my bare feet collecting fresh dirt. The winter has made my skin look cold and ghostly, and now, among the brown grass and the pink budding trees, the only color I offer is the blue of my veins peeking through my transparent skin.

Air has never smelled so clear. I inhale the defrosting earth, the new life emerging from below, and the freshness of the cold water running down the creek. The trees surrounding the walking path are still fragile and offer no cover from the gentle sun rays. Dry branches rustle quietly as a light breeze weaves between them, clearing the debris winter left behind.

Everything feels innocent in spring. The flowers that have never seen sunlight blush hues of every color. Animals are young and still learning to balance on their legs or fly with their wings. Even humans seem different – more restless and ready to burst out of school or work to discover what new things nature has to show them.

I feel different in spring. I’m able to see beyond the bleakness of what winter was and look forward to the changes that spring, summer, and autumn will bring. My perception changes, and I feel that anything can happen and that whatever does happen is okay.

The sun is recharging my battery day by day, and I feel energized. I walk with a new purpose and think with a clear mind. Today, I am walking without shoes. I am letting myself reattach to the world so I can grow higher and higher and become beautiful like the flowers that spring inspires me to be.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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