Ocean Calling

By the ocean, you can hear it.

If you’re quiet enough. Humble enough. Tired enough.

You can hear it.

It’s not a siren’s call. It isn’t the sound of a mermaid. Not the kraken’s roar.

No.

It’s not nearly as angry as all that.

Not nearly. Continue reading “Ocean Calling”

Red Snow, Warm Sands

The snow used to be clear. White. Clean-looking. Crisp, airy tufts that graced the landscape. Bunched together in a kind, soft array.

Before we got here, it wasn’t hard-packed.

Wasn’t disturbed.

And it most certainly wasn’t running with red.

Continue reading “Red Snow, Warm Sands”

Flooding Lions

If you were in an ocean, a fish would go unnoticed, yes? They’re fairly common there, don’t you think? If a fish were to jump in the ocean, it wouldn’t be strange for the other fish. It’d be relatively common place, no?

That’s what I think of—what comes to mind—when I think of his arrival. The tall man, with the black bow and piercing arrows, with the gnarled sword and jagged dagger.

The tall man with the black beard, the monster’s cloak.

The tall man astride the most beautiful beast I’d seen.

Astride the white lion. Continue reading “Flooding Lions”

Gentle Darkness, Soft Light

The ghost breathes. A wind that chills me. Turns the temperature down.

Relieves me.

Ha.

And here I was, wandering about clueless.

Thinking that I was alone. Continue reading “Gentle Darkness, Soft Light”

Wandering Star

I wandered.

Through the evergreens, across the frozen lakes, beyond the towering glaciers. I moved, endlessly onward. Pursuing only that wisp. That dream. An inkling that tickled at the back of my mind. Rode the tail of the Northern Lights. Disappeared in the dawn, leaving a faint memory.

This way.

I pursued.

I wandered.

Wandered, not aimlessly. Not at all.

But with a goal:

I will find it.

I will find you. Continue reading “Wandering Star”

Grim Light

I have wandered. For my whole life, in fact. First through the mountains, then down the river, and now, I’m here. In the dip of the valley. Huddled between two mountains. The night greets me as it always does—as it always has. With silence and shadow. Places to run, to hide.

I never meant to come out of that darkness. To step into the beam of light.

But…

She was hurt.

The small thing without fur.

On a cold night, she shivered against the itchy, dead grass. Life spilling from some spot on her body. The mountain cat still lingering nearby, frightened, though it’d done so much damage. Though it had fought—and won—against such a small, frail thing.

Silly cats.

Always so skittish.

I offered to take the small thing from him, and he quickly gave me permission. Gave me his thanks. Ran off, back into the higher parts of the mountain. Where the pinkish things didn’t often tread.

I never meant to step into the light.

Never.

But that night, because of that foolish scaredy cat, and this dying little furless thing…

I did.

And it seems to have shaken me to my core. Brought me from the shadows into a place where light can touch. Where things are not what I’ve thought. A place of reality, and yet, it feels like an illusion.

A place with flesh-things. Continue reading “Grim Light”

Churning

Rest will come soon.

It’s the only thing that keeps me going. Makes me able to take the next step, or any step at all, for that matter.

Soon.

The wind is chilly today. Biting from the back of its own throat. Gnawing at my sleeves, at my boots. Covering over my coat.

It burns my nose. Stings my eyes.

Good.

It just means that I’m still making it. That I’m not there yet.

I’m still alive. Continue reading “Churning”

Wandering the Dark

Flashes of light. Words that burst into the dark, that puncture its stranglehold. That fight against the waves.

What lies in the dark?

There’s you, and there’s me, and there’s something else here, too, isn’t there? Not something that can be seen, or touched, or felt in any physical way. But it’s here, isn’t it?

You can’t see me.

You breathe.

Inhale once, exhale again. A whisper comes out, distorted through the dark. Not loud, and not powerful in the exhale. But that isn’t what matters.

It’s the inhale that brings the strength.

You breathe in my name. Let it go, just a little. Soft words in the dark. Tiny fragments of light. A star in the ever-distant sky. Not a lot.

But it’s enough.

Enough to guide you north. Continue reading “Wandering the Dark”

Man of the Shell

I knew a man who made a deal with a turtle.

It was just one deal. Just once. He never spoke to the turtle again after that. Never went back to see how it turned out for the turtle. Didn’t care to.

He made a deal with a turtle.

He traded the turtle his house for the turtle’s shell. The turtle wanted more stability, the guy said. Told me it was easy to talk him out of his shell. Talk him into that place instead, that place of brick and concrete. So, so easy.

And, once the deal was done, the guy moved on. Took the turtle’s shell, and went out on the road.

And the guy never did look back.

He was too content.

I often wonder if the turtle felt the same.

Or if, sometimes, he thinks about it. Thinks about his old shell. His mobile home.

I wonder:

Does the turtle see it the same? Continue reading “Man of the Shell”