By G. Russell
Once, a witch put the ghost of a woman inside a tree. The tree stood in the
middle of a forest. It had white limbs and green slender leaves. In summer
it birthed sweet fruits the birds and beasts ate.
There came a woodsman to that part of the forest. He saw the tree and
considered it would make for good firewood. He readied his axe. The woman
shuddered. Tears dripped from the shaking leaves and the woodsman paused.
"There's a spell on this tree," he said. He put down the axe.
The tree sang a lullaby and he fell asleep. When he lay down the ghost-woman
appeared and unwound her obi so she lay naked alongside the asleep man.
How beautiful he is, she said to herself. They curled together, the couple,
warm in the softness of leaves, and with her deep, strong roots she gripped
the heart of the earth, tighter and tighter.
There is a forest. At its heart there are two trees. Their roots tangle and
knit over each other. Their branches are entwined and no living person can
ever separate them. One produces fruit, the other does not.
They have been there forever.
Copyright ©2007, 2011 Gary Russell. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce in any form, including electronic, without the author’s express permission.
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Born in the 60's, Gary Russell gained his considerable reputation whilst living underneath a magical bridge and riddling passers-by for gold dubloons. Whilst interred he was denied access to visitors, writing implements, and sharp metal objects. His present whereabouts, following the explosion that destroyed the facility, remain shrouded in mystery.
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This is Gary's second piece published on this site. Morph. was published here last January.