electric air of a far-off storm calls you to fields draped in dusk, and black clouds heaped tall on the horizon fill you with terrible longing for something you feel but cannot know—a fearful devotion to a place without shape, a love
that burns with no name.
sleep, strange memories bubble up–a buzzing cicada night where you pant and
push onward, pacing low to the ground behind an empty schoolyard, air thick
with the smell of snapped weeds and animal hair, the wail of a distant train.
You aren’t sure what belongs to you there.
doesn’t come like it used to, and the late air hangs heavy with the smell of wet
leaves and slow decay. It presses on you, a blanket of forest that fills your lungs.
Driving at night, you see deer in every shadow, bounding away into the trees,
Cancer: Deep in
the woods, a sheet hangs suspended above a dry riverbed–a cloth that moves
like translucent flesh over the stones and bends the light away. A voice calls
from the other side, and a dozen thin hands reach out for you behind the veil,
to cradle you, to bring you home again.
Leo: When the day
becomes unbearable, seek refuge in the absence of light. Your head comes alive
in the dark, a menagerie of sound, filled with beating wings and unfurling
green. Look into a mirror and see yourself, unfamiliar and intruded upon, a
wild animal watching you through your own eyes.
Virgo: A heart
shifts beneath your skin–a sleeping thing turning over, restless in its final
dream. You’ll become something new on the night that it wakes, and when someone
calls out your name through the woods, searching, the sound will be lost
beneath the roar of the crickets, forgotten at last.
find it lying on warm pavement in the black of night, an
inscrutable god whose head curls back as it returns to the ground. It will
speak its final prayer to you through the sizzling static and swaying
powerlines, warped and guttural with grief. Stay until the air goes quiet.
Scorpio: There is
something you’ve forgotten, though it’s not entirely gone. Trying to remember
it now brings a sad sort of pain, an aching in your eyes and arms. Let your
hands guide you, and find something buried beneath the lake, near the
shore–entombed in silt, bones that once were yours.
Visions tear at the corners of your eyes, peeling back the edges. There’s
something just beneath, another place turned back like a hazy reflection, at once
familiar and strange. It comes and goes, hitches your breath, leaves you gazing
toward a distant mountain that was never there.
dreams, you hear a language without words, a deep humming from the ground and
air around you. You wake to a bitter leaf curled beneath your tongue, and a
circlet of grass about your neck. Outside, the world is murmuring, and each
sound seems like a voice.
of white smoke float like phantoms between the trees at dawn, flameless and
churning among the leaves. Count them before they fade in the light of day—they
are meant as a message, and mark the days until they return for you. Be waiting
outside when they arrive.
Pisces: To your
eyes, the sky moves faster than it has before, sweeping clouds across the
landscape like breakers on the sea. Your blood feels cold, rushed, and the
stars streak across the black expanse, like tracers behind headlights, like the
world is falling away.
Think about high school, when you were riding the bus one morning. Maybe you were exhausted, after only two hours of sleep. You were sipping an energy drink, barely keeping your eyes open as you try to finish a homework assignment that’s due first period. You can’t focus your eyes enough to read the paper, so you give up, but the teacher never collects it.
What about middle school? Did you have that one really funny teacher who knew how to have a fun class? Did they have a sarcastic attitude, and make sassy remarks to the popular kids that made everyone laugh? Was it comforting to be on that side of the situation?
Did you ever make up a really elaborate game with your friends that would take hours to play? You only played it a few times, but it became an initiation to your friend group. Were you heroes, or surviving in the wilderness?
Remember how autumn felt when you gathered all the leaves from your yard just to jump into them? You and your friends or siblings took turns jumping in, yelling about how it’s not as fluffy after they jumped in. When you heard your names called in for dinner, did you pretend you didn’t hear?
Did you ever have to put your gloves and hat and scarf near the radiator or space heater so they could dry while you are dinner, just so you can go back outside again? You would rush to eat the hot meal, and sip hot chocolate out of your favorite mug, but you kept checking to make sure the sun hadn’t set yet.
Can you remember a time when your head didn’t touch the underside of the kitchen table? Did you hide under it, for fun or otherwise? When feet shuffled past you, did you giggle to yourself as those feet call your name?
Have you fallen asleep on a long car ride, sitting up in your car seat, and woken up just as you pull into your driveway? Did you pretend you were still sleeping so you would be carried to your bed? Was it dark and warm outside? Did you feel safe?
Do you remember feeling so small, and still feeling so safe?
Our relationship might be dead, but I still get a thrill in my stomach when I think I might see you again. Your eyes haunt me like a tune that’s stuck in my head. No matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to put these feelings to bed. I try to remember you took razor blades to my heart many times…leaving me broken and bleeding inside. But, I see ghosts of you in the faces of people I pass by; I’m jonesing hard to have you by my side. Maybe someday I’ll let the memories of you die, and I’ll undo the knot that has our souls tied. Until then, I’m linked to you across oceans and between skies…I’ll never forget you were the first to bring my heart to life.