For the last two years, Biff and Bash attended a pre-school (3K) two towns away. This meant a hefty commute, bunkering down in a book store to write–basically, lots of getting out of the house.
Now that Biff and Bash attend school in town, I can write in the comfort of my own home every day. Hooray!
Except some days I just want to get out of the damn house.
Yesterday was such a day. I had just finished another chapter of Beauty’s Price, saw the clock, and thought, Screw it. I am going to investigate those trees even if only for ten minutes.
You see, one of the beauties of Wisconsin comes with its trees.
They cluster, they watch, they stand steadfast behind the encroaching subdivisions. They erupt amidst the farmland, and farmers never seem to touch them. They hold together like a Roman phalanx, and like Hell will you take them down. Ever since I was a girl I’d look upon them and wonder: What lives in them? Hides in them? They’re a sanctuary, a prison, protecting a secret, protecting us from a secret…
One such cluster is near my daughter’s school. I parked, and entered.
Such a difference a tree-lined path can make for the soul! Sunlight in leaves will forever be Nature’s stained glass to me. A forest is divine, a place where the soul breathes deep that which has always been, and always will be. Churches rise and fall. Their air grows cold and stale as the outdated hymnals in their pews. But the birdsong heard since Creation, the leaves’ processional in the wind–that is always.
I had time for only one path; no concerns, I knew I’d be back for autumn’s transformation. One tree caught my attention:
A vine of some sort? Its roots jutted out like centipede legs.
My fantasy mind turned immediately to roots of dark magic. Possibilities blossomed.
Why else does a writer need sanctuary away from words? Not all stories come to us in the spoken word, but in the whisper of a leaf, the chatter of the twigs, the dance of light upon the stones in the bottom of a stream. Some stories hide among the brush, eyes invisible to the ignorant, waiting for the right imagination on which to pounce.