Intruders This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

November 17, 2016

The wind blew, the trees shook, the water trembled, but at that exact moment, everything was peaceful. The trees were at ease, the water fragile. There was no thought of the natural world, just actions. I began to realize that the trees, the lake, the flowers, they did not add to my world; I took from theirs. I was an intruder.

As the whistling breeze and caroling birds settled, the pond came to life. The small fish rose to the surface, quickly speeding across. The geese dunked their heads, screaming at each other in between the soaks. Large fish leaped, making a splash loud enough to startle the flock of geese out of the water. But the wind came again, then everything was at peace, almost as if time stood still.

As the wind settled, my eyes carried me to the small island in the middle of the pond. Trees and bushes grew freely, the island only touched by the natural ingredients provided by the lake. The ground covered in decaying leaves and aged tree roots provided for the strong, flourishing life of powerful trunks and colorful bushes. The death of nature gave birth to life, working symbiotically and without need for anything else. The island represented a delicious meal created with only the best ingredients. It represented a healthy world, one without crime or waste. It represented a life untouched by intruders and want, only influenced by need.

The independence of the island created a question: If life is so peaceful living on its own, what created the greed, waste, and the intruders of humanity? Nature represents purity, peaceful actions, and life fueled by instinct and needs.

The cries of my cat interrupted my peaceful thoughts of an untouched natural world, and I realized that anything can be an intruder, depending on how it is understood.

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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