Instructions | Teen Ink

Instructions MAG

February 17, 2015
By woodland GOLD, Los Osos, California
woodland GOLD, Los Osos, California
14 articles 9 photos 3 comments

if you were to walk
twenty-two minutes (plus four seconds if it happens to be a windy day)
heading north of where the birds wing west
to the path no one remembers
then you shadow the moon in its descent,
sinking into
the colossal hills ahead
stepping over the creek that
gushes and rushes all of its secrets with a loud hush
you will cross the threshold of imagination and enter a new realm
in which there will be a field
(it will be the field you dreamt of three years ago)
and standing in the eastern slope
contrast with the dark mysteries of the forest behind
will be a creature
twice the size of you when you stand on
with antlers that pierce and puncture the thin mountain air overhead
and hoofs that shake planets and cause galaxies to tremble
now, pay attention
for only if you lift your eyes so they match the being’s
you will see the hidden anonymities that live within
you will feel rooted to the ground, with taps of fear stretching deep into the earth, but blossoms of admiration above
if you then step back four inches
the beast will lift its nose to the universe
toss its head
and then you will turn
and entranced, with mesmerization reflecting into your eyes
you must run
to the cliffs encompassing the ocean in front of you
and once you have leaped over the golden bluffs
and landed in the welcoming sands
let the sea crawl over your toes
look back
once more
and the elk will gaze at you
in contemplation
then it will
into the woods
forever an echo,

times of wildest dreams.

The author's comments:

Inspired by a memory of a magical afternoon exploring the California coast, I tried to capture the childish wonder I felt that day.

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