Yeah, these posts aren't particularly interesting, but I sort of want to show you guys that I'm doing something with my time.
Anyways, this is part (negative?) one of a series that I should've written a while ago, but that I'm glad I've left to a time when I can articulate my thoughts properly. It's really not supposed to be separated, but the fact that I finished a section made me feel like I had a right to procrastinate on this.
Prologue. There used to be music. It sounded like laughter, like playing outside after dinner, like dancing in the rain.
Thin legs and feet calloused by summers of running barefoot on the sidewalk form a circle; this July will be no different. Six children exchange war stories of the gruesome, disfigured and unjust teachers of the past year; some mimic the squawks of a berating principal. They knock shoulders and throw punches that never land, not heeding their mothers’ warning to keep hands to themselves. They are of the age to want to be just like James Bond, but not quite old enough to live in the false world of formalities and responsibility.
They’re running now, each fit enough to sprint for hours and still hunger for more. They kick up the dust and dirt, but none of them bother to avoid the earthy field – after all, they live in a world where they would be forced to take bath after bath, and it made sense to them to get sufficiently dirty beforehand.
Sweating and muddy, they reach an old willow tree. They supposed it must have been at least one hundred years in age, but two summers ago, the boy with the glasses declared that no one would ever know for sure, that this would be their tree; that it would never be cut down and no eyes would ever see how many rings were in that trunk. That was how you knew how old a tree was after all, and for seven-year-olds, it was an impressive axiom to cultivate their lives from.
Even as two cycles of the seasons passed, the sextet revered this particular willow, and on the lazy afternoon of the first day of summer, they giggle still at the unsaid sacredness of the wrinkled bark and the floppy canopy of leaves. It’s a ritual for them to decide the next year perched on those branches.
There is only one girl in the group; she digs her toes far into the crumbling soil and leaps upward – efficiently, but with no grace – and finds her grip on the lowest branch, heaves herself up and laughs at the boys below her.
Two of the children left on the ground find that their t-shirts are making them red-faced and overheated, and struggle to peel them off. A fair haired boy jumps up at the tree and climbs expertly around the branches and seats himself on one of the willow’s protruding arms, right above the girl.
The others all take turns swinging on the playground of their sacred tree, and settle down around the first two. Their faces all hold a grin only achieved by children who believe themselves to be kings of mighty empires hidden in the backs of wardrobes. Each of them is tanned to a golden glow, except the boy who already had a skin of rich brown, and all their knees bear ugly scabs from long days of falling onto the tarmac and the pricks of mosquito bites. Grass stains cover whatever clothing they've left draped on their bony frames.
They are the best of friends, who conquered evil villains and discovered pirate treasure together. On the branches of that tree, they are the only people on the planet and they are invincible. They could rebel against shoes and shirts and make their own rules.
The boy with the glasses clears his throat.
A meeting has begun.
Comments would be awesome. I was really hesitant to post this anyway, and opinions would be mucho appreciated. Feel free to correct any spelling or grammar errors, but I would love you hear about your thoughts or maybe parts you didn't understand.
Or, you know, if I'm a disgrace to humanity and should never pick up a pen again.