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Jun 12
Saturday
Arts and Poetry, Community Articles, Mountain States
A Story: Little Girl Wishes

By Lois Lungta
Part of the ongoing blog kept by Jennifer Holder, titled Tracking Jewels. The exact date of this composition is unknown.

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I bought this leather-bound journal this winter to honor many things: the significance of this moment in my life as choice once again causes me to suffer my freedoms; to invoke a mind that sees and to record what it sees; to explore a new decade (as the big 3-0 birthday launched me forward into a new phase) that is seeded by history, meditation practice, passion, and curiosity.

I am at my mother’s home in Colorado, having just left – or rather, torn myself from Manhattan. Life is so open, the paths before me so vast and unknown, that I am driven deep within to choose the way forward. Sadness was my traveling companion as I left the Big Apple, and is with me still. It cramps my stomach at times and has me gasping for air. But I do not cry, maybe because I know not for what I am crying. This is my oldest grief ~ I can tell my mother it is cause by leaving Manhattan, but I know it is much bigger than place or groundlessness or even loss.

This is my heart bleeding its deepest wound, felt since childhood, maybe even the womb and before that. Mind is a brilliant mystery, perhaps as vast as the cosmos, and I know this grief is for life itself. Our direction is unbearably sad, our thwarted attempts to right ourselves are endlessly heartbreaking, and our successes are small. I have been visiting the memory-laden places of my upbringing, in youth, and rest in the comfort and insight of the spot. Sometimes they remind me of my old friend, this pain.

Can this resurgence of grief to the forefront of my awareness be the result of my choice to return? Is it informing and guiding my every step? I wonder, because at the moment it is quite paralyzing: I find I cannot work, even at the tasks I am so passionate about. There is relief in how far I have come in three decades of life, spent pursuing – and now living – my dream of being a professional writer and editor. And the recent thrust to become a publisher of books the worlds is longing for but cannot yet provide, and perhaps cannot yet receive. Ah… the brilliance of it.

If only the conditions of our world weren’t so depressed, and so very maniacally dedicated to all the wrong things. If only this work, and my arrival at this flourishing point in my career – could be met with better economics. At times, the outlook is so simple: a challenge of navigating the complexity of stimulous, emotions, and relationships.

I feel like telling a story…

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Once upon a time (yes, a fairy tale beginning)… in a grove of aspen that grew on the banks of a mountain stream, a little girl sat blowing dandelion seeds into the wind. The fuzzy whites filled the air, enchanting the time beyond her seven years with wonder and possibility. The wind was blowing sweetly, causing grass and leaves to bend and clatter in the soft music of comfort and beauty. Pieces of sun and sky danced around the little girl with the swaying of branches, and the trickle of the nearby stream played a tune of peace as water droplets made their long distance journey across landscapes, oceans, and continents.

There was nothing the little girl wanted more than a home and love. But the world she was born into, the house and parents, the world and customs, was foreign and familiar at the same time. Warm and cold intermixed, despite everyone’s trying and pretendeding things were okay. It was not the experience of life that she held in her heart and wished for.

Nothing is precious about this story, nothing far-reaching or idealistic. It is such a simple story, telling the truth, in the basic message that the only purity in life she could find was elemental.

Under her flowery comforter at night, in a room filled with teddy bears and lovely dolls, the little girl would worry about her circumstances of being thrust alone into a family, forced to face life as a lonely person among strangers who were so very – terrifyingly – intimate and in control.

But on the banks of that stream, with a breeze whispering through fine strands of her blonde hair… she was not alone. For hours she would sit amongst nature’s kin, resting in company so familiar: warm-hearted and pure.

It was always clear there had been some great mistake. Things were not as they should be – or rather, could be. Happiness could not be found here, unless one removed body and soul from the world and took refuge in wind whispers, musical leaves, fragrant grasses, and the fathomlessness of water. The great mistake caused such sadness in the little girl. Only old objects comforted her: the candle holders and horses and books; the museum dioramas of people in animal skins; the renovated B&Bs, castles, ruins, and graveyards of her father’s homeland; the enormity of the trees she climbed and held close as they swayed and changed with the seasons. It was things of age and endurance that brought joy and even bliss, including hand-crafted objects that were imagined, gripped, and shaped by human creators, and mechanics in things like watches and clocks with catalysts and gears that could be observed.

In her nights of longing — when she felt overwhelmed by the world as it was and begged the moon outside her window to make things stop – in the moment before sleep made all become wide open, all the secrets of her heart, and its meaning would return. The night would pass quietly and her dreams let all emerge.

Perhaps that was what the little girl is wishing for every time her exhaling breath fills the air with dancing white seeds – a home where there can be meaning. A place of a pace that does not outstride meaning, that recalls just what is happening amidst the landscape of time and space.

In her dreams, meaning was simply a home. Built by hand with bricks of affection and a mortar blended with earth and love, meaning could even be a home of sticks: Twigs and mud suspended by the trunks of trees. And in spring ~ when the seeds blow and swirl, dance and finally land, maybe — just maybe — they will land on this mud home and a dandelion flower could bloom.

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