|at Two Writing Teachers!|
We had some free hours to discover the inspirations hiding around Kenyon's campus, and I was lucky enough to be one of the first from our group to discover the magical wishing tree.
As soon as our project directors mentioned that there was a special tree people could "go inside", I just had to find it. I was always that kid who loved crawling under tables, benches, and bushes to create secluded forts and cozy hideaways. However, I wasn't prepared for the surprise that awaited me.
I was picturing a stately tree with a hole or hollow in the trunk. Instead, I found a gangly, unkempt monster.
But when I dared to come closer, I discovered that the unwieldy arms of this hulking beast actually hide inviting passageways into an enchanted paradise.
|Looking back toward the "doorway" through which I entered. |
(The tags are wishes left by visitors)
Following a well-worn path to duck through the curtain of leaves, I reeled with the magic of what I found: The tree's branches enclosed it in a mystical living shroud, 360 degrees around.
Were forest nymphs going to shyly come out of hiding, or would talking animals greet me with songs of welcome?
In the center of this secluded dome, the tree's massive trunk stood strong, reaching toward the sky even as delicate strands from its its branches dangled back down toward the ground.
Delighted, I scampered around the bright green bubble, taking pictures from all angles. I crawled onto the massive branches and climbed until the ground seemed too far away.
I knew I HAD to write here, so I settled into a branch that seemed made to hold me.
Relaxing, I opened up all my senses, and the words came...
Soft sunlight wafts down onto my skin, peeking through gnarled branches and tumbling green cascades. Wispy puffs of cotton sail by high overhead. Enveloped in a green sanctuary, I am completely alone, but not lonely. Cheerful birds call to their friends, occasionally interrupted by the deep brassy bellowing of sacred bells. Spindly, shiny ants toddle through their tiny lives along these branches we share. The soothing breeze gently ruffles waxy leaves that dangle with veins full of life. I gulp renewing breaths of untainted air as my muscles slowly let go of lingering tensions. The sturdy gray branch against my back reassures me as it cradles me. These worn knots and ancient wrinkles hold a thousand dreams and wishes. If I am still enough, I can almost feel the heartbeat of those stories coursing through the coiling branches. Faraway, yet right outside, bright tennis shoes and deep blue jeans stroll by, unaware of my hidden refuge. Do they know what they are missing?
(Special thanks to my CAWP colleague Shelly, who discovered me writing and took the last 3 pictures!)