One year had changed everything. The smell of dirt and earth and plowed fields drifted through the air. The lilting melody of the windchimes rose and fell in a harmonious cacophony. Laughter rang through the air and the birds chirped out their morning song. A family sat at a small table laughing in the warmth and safety and light of the burning fire. It was an image of peace and relaxation and serenity. The landscape looked and sounded and smelled like only one thing: home. And if you listened carefully, over the sound of whirling wind and piercing through the empty silence came the faint sound of gunshots. And if you took a deep breath, the smell of gunpowder reached your nose. And if you looked out on the fields the sight of sweet bleeding roses would greet your eyes. From the little house, eagle eyes filled with fear watched as their young children played in the tall tangled stalks of grass. On the horizon you could see a line of growing grey clouding the mind of the world. And if you paid attention you would see that the mountains had turned black against the sky. And if you looked closely enough you would see that the grass had turned yellow and burned. The war had seeped its way into everything. The water was stained red with it.
January 5, 2018