As a child, we had a forest filled with mystery and enchantment attached to the house. Time and structure never mattered to us back then. Every weekend, my brothers and I would explore unchartered territory. As long as the sun stayed out, we stayed out.
There was a special tree in the centre of the forest. This tree was tall and branchless; it climbed so high that it cut through the sky. No matter how long you stared, you could never see the top. Apart from the tree, we had a big patch of dirt. This was no ordinary dirt. Sometimes we’d sift through it like archeologists to find small pieces of sparkly red treasure, pieces of a broken puzzle. Scattered around, finding it was the easy part; figuring out how it fit together was the challenge. If we weren’t sifting, we were digging. All kinds of objects from the past were waiting to be found. All the things that had been lost through the ages, past secrets lying in wait of being discovered, our imaginations would get the better of us, but all the more reason to dig!
I always dreamt of digging so deep that I’d uncover a house, a house that had been covered by dirt and forgotten about, but I ran out of time. I will never forget the day when our forest came under attack. Chainsaws came with men and began chopping down our beloved tree. It didn’t look so tall with its lifeless and broken parts scattered beside it. They suffocated our dirt and covered our treasure. We never even got to say goodbye.
Today the forest is a beautiful garden, with a path and pretty flowers. The dirt patch has become a garden house where we still spend most of our time, but there is no place to dig, no treasure to be found, no tall tree to wonder about. The men took it all away, but I will never forget those beautiful days. They could never take my memory of those days away.
Featured in our Issue #2 Time & Nostalgia.