The white line moves past 3,582 times. I look out the window and count trees as they fly past. I am thankful that the waters of my mind are now calm, and that I can focus on the little details and think and feel nothing. Usually those waters are a tempest, usually they are roaring back and forth, and the sound of them clashing off of nearby rocks echoes through my thoughts and tells me that all time away from doing what needs to be done is wasted time. But the trees outside my window are calming, and the trees are making me feel that it can all be still, and that a simple sway back and forth is enough work for one day, and that just existing, just growing so slowly that one can’t even tell that it is happening is enough growth for one day, and just staying in one place and enjoying the sun is enough activity for one day, and just being a home to for the breeze to cling to, and just being a place for rain drops to collect is enough exercise for one day. I look at the trees and wonder if I can be the same way, and just the idea of thinking about it is enough to calm me. I close my eyes. The speakers of the car have acoustic guitars wafting through them, as the workers of the punk rock buzz saw have taken a day off. I count the lines on the road: 3,582. The line goes on forever and ever, it is like a word count, one without end, and it is a line that can be as long or as short as the journey demands. There is no set amount of lines on the road, there is no set amount of lines that one must pass to say that a journey is complete, or that a trip is over, or that the story of this particular drive has come to a close; it is always just enough, just far enough, just enough lines, just enough words, and it is always correct. If I was to get out of the car and stand on one of the lines in the middle of the road and look around, it would be view enough for a year, there would be details enough to drink in for hours on end, there would be enough to dwell on to fill thousands of coffee cup thoughts. Are my words the same? Is a single word of a story like a line in this road? Can it be stood on and all of the details surrounding it looked on endlessly? Are there exactly as many words in this as there needs to be? Are the words of this story like the trees I would see from my line on the road? Imperfect, but yet somehow always flawless? Where they need to be and worthy of study? I like to think so. I like to think that I am planting a forest with this writing, and while it may not be dense and it may not be deep, each of its words, it’s trees, it’s lines, is worth study, as a journey. The fact that they are there is enough.
The words in the paragraph above are the forest on Little Mountain. They are the lines on the road leading up to the summit. It is a small journey, yes, but every detail of it can be consumed in as much, or as little detail as possible. It can be a boring trip, where you wonder what all the fuss was about, or it can be something enjoyable, something you take something away from. The advantage of this forest, is that is will always be easy to get to, and all of its trees can be seen at once. Its uniqueness comes from the ability to pull certain trees from it at will, and form smaller forests of one’s own making, combining trees from the opening, from the rear, and in close proximity or no proximity at all.
A single word of a story
where they need to be and worthy of study
just far enough
rain drops to collect
waters of my mind now calm.
It is a new forest; a new journey drawn from the old.
Coffee cup thoughts
this particular drive has come to a close
I can be the same way.
These forests are plentiful. You can find them in any paragraph, on any mountain. They belong to no one. Take these trees, and make your own.