coup d'oeil / by IKB

To-day is one of those days of streets invigorated by their wetness, strewn with quickly-tattered and freshly-fallen leaves that perform a chromatic choreography that bridges the spectrum of yellow-brown. Such wet days remind me of the times that I lived in Oregon, short spans that transpired in brevity but nevertheless fruitful. This was the place where I was to experience snow, a giggly child of twelve or headed to such an age; the particulars have never mattered, they can always be invented to fill in the framework of the general.

Cap-and-gloves-clad, I’d exit the house and run down the driveway until reaching the two-lane road that dashed proudly through the desert of green pine trees; perfect asphalt parted at the centre by two whimsical lines of golden yellow. Then I’d proceed to cross her extremity, which gave way to an open field that seemed to fight sword and shield, and perhaps even with a hidden dagger, against the relentless but ever-so-unregistrable march of the forest. As I ran across the field, in the distance detecting the ant-sized house belonging to the neighbors, the closest persons for miles yet seas away, my warm breath mixing with the coldness of the air produced that smoke that always excites children. I might as well have been a chronic smoker, for by the time I reached the edge of the forest, I was exhausted and crying for air. Every gasp relieved and pierced my lungs with an intense pain, the heavy blows of my human limitations.

The gloominess of the forest satiated my desire to be free. Here I played and ceased to be, consumed by the solitude, the obscurity, the cesation of the all-imposing and all-encapsulating civility that infests our being from birth; with vitriolic voracity, the tabula rasa is consumed by the perfunctory – Name: Juan; Sex: Male; Eyes: Brown; and such!

Like man avoids the truth, I would avoid the thin rays of light that with impudency would outrage the sacrosanctity of my Terabithia. Had I pushed my imagination, I would have peopled this land with nymphs and all those wonderful and ancient beings.

Alas, this is not Oregon nor the Pacific Northwest, if anything it is some derranged land raped by time and savaged by the distress of the assault. Whatever fruit she now brings forth, it is not without effort and bitterness. She can no longer cry, her fountains of tears have long run dry. Yet man continues to wear what little remains and slowly she dies, oh sad death.

The mountains that decorate the back of my home were set aflame to-day. Fog spilled forth before recovering sense and perceptibly moving along the horizontal plane. As it trudged along, on occasion she would grow careless, allowing me a glimpse of the mountain tips that had suckled whiteness out of the passing clouds.