Thursday, January 29, 2004

Story time... 

Warm. Bright. Fragrant. Isolated.

Such love she had for this spot, this tiny piece of earth near the trickling stream. Barely enough lush grass for her to stretch out upon, but it was still enough. The trees rose up around her, protecting her haven from the rude, mechanized world in which she lived. A world she had once enjoyed, truth be told, with the bustling energy that swept her up and whirled her around, leaving her breathless, dizzy, unsure, but yearning for more, like the teacups at Disneyland.

But for those times when even she could no longer bear the ruthless pace of the city she had come here. A patch of grass and dirt, a few rocks at the edge of the stream, and the forest, so close to the highway, yet a universe away. None of this ever appeared to be disturbed by human hands, for which she was grateful. She had no idea how the area had managed to elude groping teenagers and littering troglodytes. She tried not to think about it too much, to just enjoy the nature surrounding her for as long as possible.

As she lay on the green turf, the singing of birds and gurgling of water fluttering in her ears, she felt the sun gently wash over her, warming her, soothing her. It had been too long since she felt this simple pleasure, too many years spent in the "real" world. She had almost let him, her memories of him and their shared time, steal her sanctuary. The last time she visited this retreat she brought him with her. It was the last bit of herself left to share with him. And share she did, as they sank to the ground, cushioned by verdant wild flora underneath. They sat and listened to the music of the forest, felt it enter them and swim in their blood, the ever-present warmth of the sun charging them with an erotic languor. Slowly, with a fluid serenity generally uncommon to their encounters, clothes were peeled off and skin was stroked, tongues and lips and limbs entwined and explored, crescendos were reached again and again.

She was happy to share this final piece of herself with him. She felt drunk, with the perfume of the earth and trees and water, with the sounds of nature, with the scent and feel and sounds of him, enveloping her, filling her, a part of her. It felt as though he would be a part of her always.

It was not long until she discovered that always was a nebulous concept at best. Soon after their wondrous time spent in her refuge, no, their refuge, always was ripped from her, wrenched away by a young man with too much alcohol and too little sense. The pain was too great to bear, so it was stuffed down and down until it seemed to disappear, along with recollections of the beauty of their perfect afternoon together along the side of the stream.

Finally not even she could escape the reality of his death. Years later it overwhelmed her, flinging itself at her to be faced, to be dealt with, to be truly accepted before she could heal again. Tears fell until she was dry and numb, then they came again. She was afraid to go to her usual place of peace, terrified of the reminders that might incapacitate her until she dissolved into a puddle of tears and pain and anger.

At last she realized she could stay away no longer. Not if she was going to finally live her life again. And so she entered the place that had once brought her so much contentment, almost surprised to find it exactly as she remembered, happy that humans had not desecrated it. Even more surprising was the pain that she feared so much never materialized. In its place was the peace that used to bring her here. Tinged with sadness, it was true, but somehow fuller for the bittersweet it brought. She sat on the ground as she used to, the light breeze stirring her soft cotton sundress, the sunshine warming her supple pale skin and glinting against her burnished tresses. She thought she could smell his fragrance enfold her, feel his arms embrace her, and the burden she had carried for so many years evaporated in the simple pureness of the landscape and remembrance of his love. The burden would come back, she knew that, but she also knew it would be less than before.

Again she was grateful for this secluded bit of earth. She found that she had been right so long ago, that he would be a part of her always.

And, as she lay down on the thick lush grass, she knew she would never forsake her haven again.


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Carol/Female/36-40. Lives in United States/California/Los Angeles/San Fernando Valley, speaks English. Spends 40% of daytime online. Uses a Normal (56k) connection.
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