Backlit sun motes drift against downy lashes, their summer snowstorm dusting leaf silhouette dreams.
Her hand reaches to touch the untouchable treetops from whence they come.
If only she stretches her frail arm farther, she is sure to pull them down. Down like a jungle ladder, like a fantastical floral staircase, like a Jack’s beanstalk.
Hello, she whispers, I seek a sunset castle; giant or no.
But she can’t. Even without looking she sees lines of stitches’ kisses from hip to toe: a story she never wants to read but has to lay through every minute of every day even though she’s shouting, “No, Mom! No! Not that one again!”
And when Mom finally stops reading, mid-cry, the sad-smiling nurses pick up right where Mom left off.
And they have no pictures. No rhymes. No castles. All they have are charts -charts and charts of very serious stories.
Nature’s warm breath roves across her, shaking her picture book view, rustling grass blades and tousling blonde wisps around her eyes. Shifting leaf shapes reflect in half-circle, irised blue as her moted lashes slowly blink.
Here, in the cool grass beneath nature’s canopy is her story’s illustration. -Not down to the heavy parts that anchor her; not to the raised-skin paths where the doctor in the mask wrote the story she never wants to hear.
Her real story is above; with Jack, and Peter Pan, and Thumbelina. It’s trailing amongst the castles, the Neverlands, the fairy houses.
Her reaching fingers know the way.
Her squinting blue eyes follow cloudlit paths.
Her legs cannot feel the tickling green surrounding them, as shadows shake and dance over everything, the good stories and the bad.
But her weightless spirit rises from sleeping smiles to magic skies above.
And she flies.