WINDS ESKER                
  
                                          
 THERE WAS THIS PLACE  THAT FOR TWO YEARS 
 I  COULDN'T GO  TO. REGARDLESS HOW  MUCH 
 DISCUSSED  WITH OTHERS,  OR POINTED  OUT 
 ON MAPS, I COULD  NOT THINK  OF  IT WHEN 
 ALONE.  I  WOULD  OFTEN TRAVEL PAST  THE 
 FORK, WHERE  A  RIGHT  TURN WOULD SURELY 
 TAKE ME THERE, BUT EVEN THEN,  SOMETHING 
               KEPT ME AWAY.              
                                          
 WHEN  I  FINALLY GOT THERE,  AFTER  SOME 
     HEAVY SUBCONSCIOUS BATTLE I MUST     
 ASSUME,  THE   PLACE  WAS   SURREAL.  AN 
 ESKER, LIKE  A NEEDLE-THIN  RIFT  OUT IN 
 THE  LAKE,  BUT   TEN  METERS  HIGH  AND 
 ADORNED  IN BIRCH,  WILLOW, BRACKEN, AND 
               BLUEBERRIES.               
                                          
 WALKING  ATOP  THAT  SPINE,  I  CAME  TO 
 NOTICE THE  VIEW TO EITHER  SIDE.  THERE 
 SHOULD  BE  SHORES,  OF  COURSE,  BUT  I 
 DIDN'T  RECOGNIZE THEM. FIRST OFF,  THEY 
 WERE MUCH TOO CLOSE, AS  THE LAKE SHOULD 
 STRETCH FOR A  HUNDRED  METERS  MORE  ON 
 BOTH  SIDES.  BUT  NOW  I  FELT  I COULD 
 ALMOST REACH  OUT AND  TOUCH  THEM.  AND 
 THEN, WHEN  I REALIZED WHICH SHORES THEY 
           WERE, I HAD TO STOP.           
                                          
 THEY  WERE  OF  THE RIGHT LAKE. BUT THIS 
      LAKE IS LARGE, FRACTURED, AND       
 BIPARTITE.  LIKE A  PAIR OF LUNGS CARVED 
 INTO THE GRANITE, AND  WITH NO LESS THAN 
   FIVE COMMUNITIES ANCHORED AT VARIOUS   
      POINTS. AND SO, STUDYING THESE      
    IMPOSSIBLY CLOSE SHORES, I SLOWLY     
 UNDERSTOOD THEM AS BELONGING  MANY MILES 
                   AWAY.                  
                                          
 I  EXAMINED  THE  RIDGE,  THE   TREELINE 
 ABOVE. WAS THIS  WHAT YOU  SAW OPPOSITE, 
 FROM  THOSE  OTHER  SHORES?  I  COULDN'T 
                REMEMBER.                 
                                          
 CARRYING  FORWARD,  ON  THE VERY  TIP OF 
 THE ESKER,  I  FOUND THE  RUINS OF  SOME 
    OLD BUILDING. THERE WERE OVERGROWN    
 MARBLE STAIRCASES, STONE FLOORS BENEATH  
 THE MOSS,  AND  STRANGE  SLABS  INSERTED 
 INTO  THE  SLOPE LIKE  DAMS  AGAINST THE 
              GROUND ITSELF.              
                                          
 SITTING  THERE, I COULD  SEE ACROSS  THE 
 NARROWED LAKE MY ENTIRE PATH  TO WHERE I 
 SAT:  FROM  THE  STAIRWELL  OF MY HOUSE, 
 THROUGH  THE  OLD WOODS BEHIND THE  TILE 
      FACTORY, THE BRIDGE OVER ROUTE      
 TWENTY THREE  AND  THEN  BACK  UNDER IT, 
 THROUGH   THE  FANCY  VILLAS,  OVER  THE 
 FIELDS, AND THEN THAT RIGHT  TURN AT THE 
                   FORK.                  
                                          
 AND THEN  THE STAIRS UP  ON  THE  RIDGE. 
 THINKING  BACK,  THIS  WAS  PROBABLY IT. 
 HIDDEN  IN  A GROVE, THERE  WERE  STAIRS 
 MUCH LIKE THE ONES  I CURRENTLY SAT  ON, 
 OLD  AND  WORN  DOWN, THAT  LEAD YOU  UP 
 ONTO THE  ESKER. THE POINT OF ENTRY. HAD 
 I  INSTED  OPTED TO WALK THE PATH AT ITS 
 FOOT,  I'M SURE MY  EXPERIENCE  WOULD'VE 
          BEEN DIFFERENT INDEED.          
                                          
  
                                          
 ON   THE  LAKE,  THERE  WERE  PEOPLE  IN 
 BOATS. I WONDERED, COULD THEY  EVEN  SEE 
 ME?  IF  I SHOUTED,  WOULD  THEY TURN TO 
          STARE RIGHT THROUGH ME?