Long ago;

I dreamt of old leaves and these huge, towering trees. The smell of rotting wood, sap and fertile soil mixed with the cool winds from the west.

A raven soared in the overhead canopy. Its wings were jet black with a sheen of silver. The cool air brushed against my skin, its touch chilly, and I took in the rich greenery of an everlasting haven.

“I’ll show you something.”

A mischievous glimmer shone in your amber orbs. Grinning, you ran from the base of one tree to the top of a moss-covered rock. It jutted out from the earth like the invasion of a wisdom tooth.

And there you were.

You flipped through the air like an elegant elf, twirling and flipping as the air carried you in its embrace. Your brown, short-cropped hair formed gentle, silk-like waves, your angled features serene in movement.

My breath hitched, caught like a hiccup.

There, was beauty in its entirety.

Then you were gone and I was alone, trapped in the emerald paradise.

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Haunted.

Oh little one,
why didn’t you flee?
Why didn’t you let your legs
carry you far and free?

Oh little one,
keep running, don’t look back–
Remember my golden curls in all its glory,
not this bloodied, lifeless wreck.

Oh little one,
’tis is a rough and gravelled road.
“Take the road less traveled,” they said
Ha! It has stolen precious empathy,
a cursed, beloved abode.

Oh little one,
in the years to come,
will you come to loathe and
loathe,
holding love

for none?