The Curse

He often loved too harshly

Or hated too softly

At times, his joy fell cold

And his sadness grew warm

He found insignificance with the serious

Enjoyed the importance of the trivial

His mind never experienced quiet

Nor did his heart become loud

He watched death in the living

Observed life in the dying

He knew the good in the bad

Friended the bad in the good

He was a constant contradiction

Embracing both sides of the opposites

Always walking the line

One foot gracing each side

Unable to find balance

Such is the curse of chaos

 

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The Oblivion Desert

The Oblivion Desert. Not much is known about it. I’ve scoured all scrolls and books I can get my hands on. Spoken with all I’ve come across. I’ve only been met with glances and hushed tones. Naturally, this piqued my interest more.

My dragon–Lyria–and I traveled west of the Sangria Mountains. Despite her extended endurance from her disparate lineage, we had to make camp several times, but we entered the country of Baleria on the fifth day. Settling on the southwestern side of Lake Pure.

A group of nomadic centaurs made friends with us and gifted us scarves and incense of a fine quality I had never seen before. I inquired about the desert. They didn’t know about the history, but they directed me toward a city they frequented on the west coast of the continent. Thanking them, we made our way to the southern border of the centaur country.

On the other side of the border rested the desert.

Lyria erupted into a cacophony of snorts and growls. She wouldn’t step foot on the sand. I tried persuading her, as she loved beaches, but she a unleashed a guttural roar uncommon for her. She was clearly stressed, so I sent her back to the lake where she could wait for my return.

Thus, I traveled alone, on foot, down Ultima Thule’s coast.

The sand proved odd. During my first night, I bottled a sample. It was both hard and soft, both fine and course. The grains tan, ivory, and red in color. I ran it between my fingers until I fell asleep, perplexed. Yet excited for the adventure to come.

It took me three days to reach the designated city. Oasis was the name, as I found out. A city as odd as the environment surrounding it. Transparent rosettes of the same tan, ivory, and red–yet crystalized–sand made up the various structures. Aqueducts carried turquoise water around the city from the ocean, watering emerald palms dotted throughout.

Only the natives shimmered more than their dwellings. Their ethereal nature intrigued me, and they greeted me with extreme kindness. I spent the night in their finest home. Despite their constant lavishing and well-appreciated floral bath, I couldn’t find slumber. The natives sung to the stars. A soothing melody keeping me entranced and in a pleasant, waking dream.

Morning came too soon, and I reluctantly asked about the desert. Their expressions turned solemn. However, they remained positive as they admitted they couldn’t recall what happened. The high priest relayed I should seek the Ruins of Elion, a forgotten place in the middle of the desert. Should I survive the sand wyrms, perpetual undead, Fathom Leviathans, lingering majik, and the relentless heat, I would find the answers I yearned.

The natives provided me a slender horse with a metallic coat, equipped with a month of supplies. I worried about the weight as the steed’s willowy nature made it appear too delicate for packs. But they assure me its strength proved more than capable.

I gave my thanks after they bestowed multiple blessings on me, declared I would see them soon, and mounted the horse. A soft cluck urged my steed forward, and I already sensed how well it had been trained. The animal handler in me pleased.

This would be my greatest adventure, I already knew it. Outside of my first adventure, of course, which was leaving the evil lord I once served under. Deities willing, I would survive to write and speak the tale.

My nerves steeled as I wrapped a scarf around my face and headed into the Oblivion.

The Encounter

She mesmerized them
Sweeping with a gown of pure white
Flowing with a train of elegant feathers
She moved effortlessly across the Great Hall

He mesmerized them
Sweeping with a suit of pure black
Flowing with a train of ribbed leather
He moved effortlessly across the Great Hall

She captivated him
With cascading, ebony locks
And a crimson, seductive smile
He knew she was no ordinary creature

He captivated her
With cascading, ivory locks
And a crimson, piercing gaze
She knew he was no ordinary creature

The gathered parted
Their lips sealed shut
Their eyes wide in wonder
What would become of this encounter?

She passed him by
Her fingers never reaching his
A slow blink her departing gift
She exited the Great Hall

He passed her by
His fingers never reaching hers
A slow blink his departing gift
He exited the Great Hall

She waited at the North
Her train unfurling into hidden wings
Flying high, she held his gaze
Tonight wasn’t for fighting no ordinary creatures

He waited at the South
His train unfurling into hidden wings
Flying high, he held her smile
Tonight wasn’t for fighting no ordinary creatures

The gathered regrouped
Whispers passed their lips
Eyes searching for answers
What had become of this encounter?

Love Confessions

I never say I love you
Nor wave when I leave
It gnaws my every waking moment
For I wonder if you grieve

I fear you don’t know how I feel
Or think our love is dead
Are my concerns legitimate?
Or does self doubt circle my head?

Truth is, I don’t know how to say
Those words meaning so much to me
I must find a different method
That will grant you to see

My heart rests in your hands
And you’re always on my mind
Your support doesn’t go unnoticed
Your patience is more than kind

My daily prayer is you’re not vexed
That your heart holds no spite
Please know our love isn’t in danger
Because of my personal plight

Even though I my tongue ties
Know you’re what I dreamt of
Even though my words are lacking
You will eternally have my love

Nature’s Sanctuary

Two days ago, I posted the following image on Instagram with the caption, “Dreaming of warmer days, greener days. Days when the sky is always blue. Days when I can spend all day aligning myself with nature, taking pictures, smelling fresh air, and recharging my soul.” I wanted to elaborate on it some more.

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Living in the Midwest, winter isn’t always winter. For example, we are currently under a winter storm warning which includes half a foot of snow, almost an inch of sleet, and of course, ice. But we started the beginning of this week in the sixties. It is not uncommon for it to be seventy degrees one day and snowing the next. Our only consistent season is summer, when it’s always the upper nineties and humidity drives us wild. The people of the Midwest are crazy because our weather is crazy. That’s all there is to it.

I wouldn’t say I have the winter blues. This is actually the first year in many I don’t have seasonal depression. I’ve been working on myself quite a bit the past several months, and I’m seeing positive changes. Maybe I’ll have a post on that later. I digress.

When we get those fifty to seventy degree days in the middle of what’s supposed to be winter, my heart longs for perpetual spring. Longs for spending time on wooded trails and venturing off the beaten path. In 2018, I was outside. A lot. Almost every beautiful weekend, I demanded to go to parks. Even during the dog days of summer, much to my cold-loving husband’s chagrin.

I love nature. I always have.

And I don’t just love it for the photography aspects. I absolutely adore standing in between hundreds of trees and just…standing. Listening to the woodland creatures. Breathing in the smells. Surrounded by green. I am an empathic introvert, and one of the things I’ve learned about empaths is we have a special connection with nature. It brings us peace, harmony, healing for our souls.

The forests happen to be my nature sanctuary. As much as a part of my heart belongs to the ocean, the forests are where I thrive, where I feel the most alive. Perhaps, it’s because I was raised in the country. Or, perhaps, when God made my character sheet, he designed me to be a ranger and picked forests as my preferred terrain. (A little Dungeons and Dragons joke for anyone who plays.)

For me, my connection with nature isn’t mystic, it’s Divine. I was raised conservative Southern Baptist, and I’m not ashamed of that. While I currently attend a non-denominational church, I still believe the Bible and its teachings are true and infallible. If you believe otherwise, it is not my place on this blog to debate with you. Even the Bible says we are all given free will, and everyone will decide for themselves what they will and will not believe.

But I digress. Again. For my own, personal thought process, there is a beauty I cannot describe within the trees and foliage of the woods. A supernatural type of energy that electrifies my senses. When I’m surrounded by nature, I feel like I’m surrounded by God, Himself, in an intimate way. And it’s breath-taking.

I know the Garden of Eden was perfect until sin entered the world. However, to me, the ever-changing sky, the glorious mountains, the raging sea, the secret-laden forests–they’re still perfect. I know we encounter natural disasters that take life and homes. I know nature can seem like vengeful spirits, but it has its peaceful times. And it’s beautiful.

Perfect.

I’ve struggled with depression and questioning why we’re here, trying to find the meaning of life, asking why bad things happen if God is perfect. I’ve struggled with the same questions as anyone else. There’s been countless nights where I’ve cried myself to sleep, begging God to take me in my sleep because my existence was a mistake.

But a perfect God doesn’t make mistakes.

When I wonder why I’ve been given life and placed on this Earth, when all I want to do is doubt everything, I take myself back to the middle of the forest. Standing under towering trees full of green life. Listening to that babbling brook you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll go find and play in like a small child. Hearing the birds chatter to one another and the leaves rustling with the breeze. In a demanding society, it’s crucial for someone like me to detach, retreat into my bubble, and recharge.

Nature is my perfect bubble.

The world is full of pain and suffering, but here it all melts away. Here is where I find my peace. Here is where my God reveals Himself in a way that’s special for me. Here is His temple. He didn’t have to make the land, sky, and space wonderful. We could be living in an arid wasteland. We don’t have to be alive, but here we are.

“God saw all that He had made, and it was very good.” -Genesis 1:31