Wednesday, December 21, 2011

KekahJ Week 83: The Meadow


Picture 1

Picture 2

KekahJ's Choice: Picture 2


The Meadow

The mist shrouded the meadow, twisting into unfamiliar shapes. It made the place I once loved look strange and foreign. Even the trees, the trees that had been my friends my entire life, looked different. It was as if they didn’t recognize me, as if time had changed me into a stranger to them. Or maybe they did recognize me. Maybe they remembered as well as I did.

Despite the foreboding I felt, I continued to walk out of the depths of the forest and into the meadow I once called home. Unfamiliar plants brushed against my legs. How could everything have changed so completely? Even the sun, once a warm golden orb high in the sky, seemed hostile. It was as if the light reached the meadow floor, but the warmth did not.

I tried not to think about how long it had been, but it was impossible to stop my brain from automatically doing the math. Two years. Two years since the fateful day that had changed my life forever. Before I knew it, I was standing in the very spot it had happened. Maybe my subconscious had led me there. There was nothing left to indicate that this was the spot, but every fiber of my being told me that it was.

I wasn’t sure whether to be relieved or disappointed that no physical remains of that day were left behind. What had I expected? To see crimson blood still staining the reeds? To see the meadow grass still trampled down and flattened from the struggle? Of course not. Nature had reclaimed the spot that would always hold such significance for me and made it as unremarkable as the rest of the meadow.

After a moment, I began to pace around the meadow again. Had anyone else been here? Did anyone else know? I couldn’t help wondering what had happened in the aftermath of that day. The memories that I’d worked so hard to repress came crashing down on me now. Unable to stand on my own any longer, I sought the comfort of a large boulder. I wiped the sweat away from my forehead with trembling hands as flashes of the day assaulted me. Soon, the sweat that poured down my face was mixed with tears. Why had I come here? This was a mistake.

The snap of a twig had me on my feet in an instant. Without thinking I fled, fear propelling my shaking legs as I sought safety. My heart raced as I tore through the forest back to the comfort of my car. The terror I felt, whether real or imagined, was enough to convince me of the foolishness of my return to the meadow. I had mistaken the once beloved meadow as a place I where I was still welcome. I would not make the same mistake again.