Keep Art Alive :: “Leaf Hat” :: Art by Kelly Vivanco
And one day she just woke up
Once upon a time there was a girl who found herself in
a huge and overwhelming world she wasn’t ready for.
This girl had lived her young life hiding in books,
school and her imagination.
She had many secrets and pain hidden deep inside her pale,
almost translucent skin,
and she walked about with a very thin veil of trust,
for anyone who tried to peak beneath the surface
of her quiet smile.
She thought she could change the person she had been.
For as long as she could remember taking breath,
she had tried on many disguises,
and filled herself with poisons that would temporarily mask the wounds she held too deep.
She opened herself up to strangers,
and they offered her candy and liberties,
and, more pain.
Than one day she met a boy painted with vibrant colors and glittery wings.
He too was hiding behind a costumed happiness.
He too was trying to evolve into something brighter and different.
The girl and this boy began a strange friendship that seemed to
transcend both the outer and inner selves they were alone.
One night a kiss awoke the two sleeping souls,
and they began a dance of healing and bliss.
The girl slowly opened up her boxes and trinkets.
She laid them out in front of the boy and he held them gently,
listening to their whispered tales.
He left tiny kisses all over them and very slowly the cracks were
covered over with translucent light.
He brought to her similar tales and scratched up jewels which she took
in her arms and made beautiful,
shining and rare.
Too soon these healing children were separated by
truths and lies, and the outside world.
They tried to fly back into each other’s realms occasionally,
and were always re-greeted by music.
But, after a while the melodies waned and began to lose their rhythm.
The boy’s wings grew brittle and broke off,
and the girl took her trinkets and shoved them down deeper than
The boy went off into unknown skies,
taking on feathers in exchange for the wings he had left behind.
The girl tried to tie on his wing,
but they slipped and fell into the mud.
She ended up wrapping them up in a silver lined blanket and putting
them away under her bed at her childhood home.
Back to where dreams were spun,
and her story had started.
Her life took strange turns after that.
Some of them full of wonder and glory,
others plagued by ghosts and sorrow.
She caught glimpses of the boy’s life,
but they always came as blurred snapshots that were hard
to make out.
She tried to forget the colors they spun together,
hand in hand,
and she took out new brushes to paint herself a future;
a silver band wrapping itself tightly over a new revelation.
Someday later the boy’s name crossed her path again
and she called to him in a quiet voice full of trepidation.
Just hearing her name spoken from his lips made her suddenly remember,
spinning in circles and the feel of sand between her feet.
She felt the tickle of fins where her toes should be,
and heard the call of the waves.
So, she silently traversed back to the house of her beginning,
shoving her adult body underneath her little girl bed of long ago.
There she found the set of wings still intact,
albeit dusty and much older.
She sits with them now at the edge of the shore
and wonders how he will look when she hands them back to him.
She asks herself if he will even remember.
Landed (live) :: Ben Lee