It was only when I met the undertaker riding his Fjord horse that I realized I was hopelessly off the official path.
A lot of my stories start with being hopelessly off the official path.
When I write, my desire to see what is behind the curtain, over the hill, or perched just beyond my searching eyes moves from my feet to my fingers.
I find myself peering into the corners of my imaginary worlds, the places where I catch movement out of the corner of my eye and wonder, “What’s happening there?”
Maybe it isn’t so surprising then that once I have finished a story, one of my first thoughts is, “Well what would have happened if I had gone here instead?”
When the first words of the story appear, there are so many roads to choose from!
They stretch, infinite and appealing, ahead of me and I greedily stare down all of them, my fingers itching for exploration.
I will take the path that looks the most wild, filled with obstacles and weeds braving the cracks, and laugh as I admire the view.
But sometimes I wonder if maybe the wider road, well-kept and fast, might have offered more options or a brighter destination.
When I met the undertaker, he told me about drowning bodies and then paused as his horse side-stepped underneath him.
“There’s no place like this.”
This is the path I have chosen and I have no regrets.
I will gather a bouquet of dandelions and keep one smooth rock in my pocket, to run through my fingers as I write towards the horizon.
A road of lesser passage