Drops of nature's tears danced as diamonds from yesterdays heavy rain. I reached into the tall wet grass and found a lady-bug playing on a single dry, sharp blade.
The grass cut me as my hand passed over it. Living inside a dream, there was no pain. The lady-bug lighted next to the red river forming on my hand. She caught herself in the breath of a new wind and flew across the meadow as if asking me to play. I rose into the sky again and followed her in flight. We danced together through mist and arches of rainbows spraying across the rich blue sky. I smiled in wonder of the land traveling with us both below.
We danced and played for hours over the meadow. Both across and back. She followed a path cutting through a forest. Calling for chase still climbing high up into the hills. We reached a mountain top with a clearing in the wilderness and a view so magnificent. A place only story-books might proclaim.
As lady-bug carried on about her way, I touched down. Landing lightly once again through the incredible scent wafting into the air. Wild flowers covered every inch across this foreign land. To inhale the scent, I picked some pale blue and yellow spheres of colour whose stems fit nicely behind my ears.
Some trout danced in a nearby stream. They jumped skillfully through the water almost staring at me as they burst through the stillness of the brook. I smiled. I lay down, burying my head beneath the pool of the stream and drank deep gulps of mountain nectar. Cold and sweet.
I lay in the current. The stream carried me away, and I could then smell the sea. The wind intensified. The water carrying me to a gulf, it spilled into the ocean. I swam in the azure sea, the salt burning my eyes as I sought refuge in this memory of the womb that was once inside my mother my safe, forever home.
Resting in the water, I floated with the waves like a cork of wine. In the distance, not all that far away, I spied a ship. A boat. A tall-ship, stood ahead of me in the water. I carved my way towards her pulling myself through the ocean with all my strength. I reached the hull and climbed upon a rope ladder hanging across the damp wood. An old man reached down to me from the deck and gently pulled me up. He didn’t speak. He just led me to the wheel. He nodded to some other men on board who worked the lines as we started to sail.
The wind blew it’s breath into the cloth engines of the ship as she cut her way towards patches of land we couldn’t see. The old man knew the way. He lit a pipe and hung his arm over the rail filled with reverence as he watched the water pass us by. He turned to me and smiled. I smiled again.
“Joshua!” The voice startled me from downstairs. Staring out of the window I saw the rain splashing against the pane. The room was stale. The breath of the wind was gone. The old man's pipe, left not a lingering scent of the freedom I'd suddenly lost, as quickly as it had come. Outside, the black of winter hung heavy in the trees. My heart sunk again, into the depth of uncertainty within.
“Joshua,” the voice called again. “It’s time to drive the kids to school.”
I walked downstairs. I looked into Aaron’s eyes as he came, back-pack in hand up the stairs to meet me. He reached up.
“Good-morning daddy! What were you doing up there?”
As I lifted him into my arms he hugged me. I hugged him back. I smiled again.
“Chasing spring,” I told my son. “Daddy was upstairs chasing spring.”
Darren Michael Gregory, September 4th, 2014
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