A Short Thought of Time

A woman sat on a porch, holding a mug filled with steam that wafted about the air.  The air itself was still.  Only the steam and a dog’s tail wavered back and forth.  Thus she sat in calm content, and thought of time.
            Time weaves and flows and falls, she thought.  The edge of it never appeared… until it did; abruptly.  And all that once seemed a circle suddenly proves false, she thought again.  All those silly people never understood, never got it; that it was never the world, but time that lay flat—and was all the more epic for being so…
            She blinked.  She had all the time in the circle… before it hit the edge.  It was, she thought, a truth with which it was well worth doing something.  And that, of course, made it all the more imperative to stand up, walk about, apply herself.
            But the air felt cool on her cheeks.  And the dog sat next to her so comfortably.  Surely, just this once, time would keep moving in a circle.  The edge was not so near.  And if it was, perhaps she wasn’t so unready to meet it.
            It was a nice thought. 
            She looked down into the depths of her cup.  The furthest depths.  Empty.  She rose, for the edge of time had met her—at least this edge.  But that was a thought for another morning. 

The Breath of the Wind

The wind whirled and cracked.Or maybe it had cracked something.The house, perhaps.
Stepping outside in the midst of the storm was inadvisable, but the man wanted to survey the damage.It was not the house that had cracked; it was the old apple tree.The wind had split it down the middle. He shook off the snow from his boots as he stepped back inside. ‘Nothing hit the cottage,’ he said to his wife. ‘That’s a relief,’ his wife replied, then went back to her sewing. ‘But,’ the man began.The wife looked back up.And then she saw it.The look in his eyes.And she knew, even before he said, ‘It’s the apple tree.’ He left it at that, but a knot found its way between his brows. His wife started to sink.As though she could fall through her chair, as though the solid outlines of her world had begun to fade.He watched her begin to slip away; it was a sight he had not seen in a long time.
Nights passed sleeplessly for the man, because nights passed sleeplessly for his wife.And in the day, he watched as she st…

A Tale of the Snow Queen

There was once a young woman who was not especially kind, nor especially brave.In fact, there was nothing particularly special about her at all, save that she was human, and that kind was of a sort that was never entirely similar to one another.Perhaps it was because her life had been rather clear-cut, with nothing of challenge or consternation to develop her character.Or perhaps it was because little was expected of her, or that she had never witnessed need. And perhaps all of that had made her heart a bit small, a bit cold, a bit distant, and little inclined to care.
One winter’s day she wandered about the forest, to be free of village prattle and intrusions on her thoughts, when she came upon a pack of mice, seven in all, who looked frozen with cold.They seemed dead, but for the faintest beat of their hearts.A spark of compassion lit within her, and it seemed a fate of gross cruelty that snow and ice should cause the animals such pain.And in a desire to nurse them back to health, sh…

Reflections of an Elderly Witch

And so it happened, one winter afternoon, that a woman of elder years sat in a wing-backed chair fat with cushions, and thought deeply.
She thought about many things—about kings and princes, and whether she should do away with the lot of them; about fairies, and whether she should call and ask them to sit about inside her cottage house again, as they had made it look so cozy the last time; and, of course, about cats. But the last was because there was one sitting under a pile of yarn, tugging at the mounds of string that grew slowly smaller and smaller as the woman’s knotted fingers curled around wooden needles for the small magic of making a sweater.It was a small magic; infinitesimal in the grand scheme of the use to which she had put magic to in her time.It was, as she might call it, other magic.She could not say that knitting a sweater was any less magical per se; singular threads became a woven whole, and that was indeed a form of magic.That said, it was a wholly diffe…

A Very Short Tale of Priorities

Joan stared with intensity at the plant, as she had all day, willing it to disappear.Her mind was clear, ready for the final step—the magic.She cracked her knuckles and closed her eyes.Raising her hands, Joan said the incantation.She waited, then opened one eye.She sighed; nothing had happened.Walking over, she picked up the plant and tossed it in the compost.After all, in a world of books and chocolate, she had better things to do.