Come, let's go for a walk.
Up the hillside where I used to wander as a child, now following my sister and our children romp and rustle the remains of winter.
The earth is raw, and it smells like iron and old wood. Cold water, pine needles, moss and whispers.
Look. Life is pushing.
Bubbles bursting against rocks, but laughter bursts nowhere. Not here.
The earth's floor is hard and we stare at our shadows, wondering how fast we should run to get away.
And then the light.
Then she gives me a flower, and tells me it's just for me.
New and old.
Messy and work.
Color and absolute death decomposing back into the roots.
We shed and ruffle. Dig and search.
For the new things.
The things that are slippery, slithery, sliding through our fingers, eager to get away.
Wet boots and frizzy curls. Adventurous young boys and pioneer girls.
Sisters who sit on felled beaver's log.
Silence that flits through the trees, woodpecker's songs and little cousins learning to get along.
I like her toothless grin and their spunk. They're content with buckets and nets, and we try to recall where the berry brambles lay hidden beneath the vines. Where did we use to circle ourselves with blackberries turning our fingers purple?
Just there. Down the hill. Back to where we came from.