Tuesday, January 21, 2014


Jamison lay on the ground and spread dead leaves like a quilt across his legs and stomach. Once candy red mixed with pale yellow, the leaves were now were uniformly brown as the year pushed deeper into winter. Each day colored the ground another, darker shade as no new leaves fell and the ones on the ground faded.

The leaves were dry and each gust of wind pushed around the top layer. To his eyes it seemed like his blanket was alive and moving. The olive-colored tips of his boots stuck out from under the leaves, and when he tried to wiggle his toes he found it difficult given how the boots were a little too tight on his feet.

Above Jamison was the only visible tree with any foliage left, a striking pine that jutted toward the sky as if challenging wind and cold. He imagined it was strident about how the rest of its neighbors were taken apart one bright leaf at a time. A few thick green-to-brown needles were interspersed between the other leaves on the ground, but they must be inconsequential to such a mighty tree, single skirmishes lost in an endless war it was winning.

With the sun filtering down through the needles and branches, Jamison curled into a ball under the leaves and slept.

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