Tuesday, 5 October 2010
IT WAS A COLD AND MISTY MORNING IN THE FOREST...
I had gone to sleep with the full moon peering through my open window, a dreamless night, ready to wake at dawn like every other morning. The house was quiet, except for the creaking of the attic door that was loose on its hinges, the noise reminded me of withered old bones.
I dressed quickly, pulling on my tattered boots and long velvet coat that kept the wind out. As I opened the front door and stepped out on to the gravelled path, I caught a glimpse of a startled fox foraging through the dustbin, a piece of yesterday’s remains dangling from its mouth.
A hawk circled lazily in the sky, watching, as I climbed the rickety bridge that lead to the waterfall. The water level was particularly high this morning, and autumn leaves floated downstream to meet their fate. As I reached the familiar meadow, with its welcoming silver birch trees, I discovered that I wasn’t alone.
The girl sat in the centre of the meadow, legs crossed, in a meditative state. I was aware of her gaze darting to my face, but she remained tranquil. She told me her name was Leaf.
When we clasped hands, I saw that she was a being of the earth, the forest her natural element. Leaf was a story teller, a weaver of magics.
Her fingers were stained with mud and berry juice and the dress she wore was ragged and adorned with different shades of green. Bracelets and bone jewellery hung from her slender wrists, jangling with the slightest movement. There was a circle of flowers laid out on the ground, enclosed by acorns and chestnut shells, an offering for the wood mother.
She began to tell me a story, about the lore of the ancient trees and gods of the earth.