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Wings to touch.

08.06.17 – Old-growth

A boy lay amongst the scattered golden curls listening to the wonders zoom over head. He could hear the whine of metal and flame firing in the sky, a show of angels and man flashing and fighting amidst the smoke and azure. He couldn’t catch them beneath the shade, just bright glints folding open and closing as the leaves did a dance of veils. He started at them with the same interest as a man might for such temptation, but never was a sight given, just the impression of movement and the overwhelming cacophony of sound that fell through the boughs. He seemed content enough to collapse into a dream and catch those flitting fireflies in that foggy and whimsical field.

The old oak cradled him, and its branches broke off in all directions to keep the revolving fire from rounding down to his sensitive skin. What children the tree still held, not stolen by heat or season, fluttered but stayed straight with their duty. They wanted a dreamer amongst their roots, someone unafraid to carve his hopes in the bark but leave the core untapped. The boy couldn’t see stars even if our own hadn’t been there to blind him, but he could imagine a wish for every leaf and count them between here and the night with hope. The trunk softened and sloped to hold him closer like it might know more of his secrets if it took him in. He seemed willing without an ask; protected and trusting of this motherly grove.

Maybe he rang the knots or tugged at the gnarls and asked that aging tree what questions he had. Maybe he spoke to it, sung gently beneath the limbs and carried a tune to its top. He sat in a small forest cut in a great city but always he chose that tree to lie under and let stories roll forward. He made fort, a home, and a bed in the tamed wilds and felt far from all the grey steam of industry. And though he could hear the crash and din of a world at work around him, it only came as a churning noise, repetitive and unimportant, easy to forget and easy to send him off to other lands that hadn’t yet been discovered. He stared up through the leaves and caught the gleams and the blues briefly, smiling all the while.