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Cornelius J. Johnson
copyright 2015, AltroMondo Editore
soluzioni grafiche e realizzazione
Cornelius J. Johnson
Is really all fair in love and war?
Each of us, has found ourselves, over time, confronting complex and difficult situations, or even embarrassing and overwhelming ones. This is because life does not give you much time to evaluate what happens, so you find yourself at a crossroads, and even if you don’t want to, you must decide which road to take.
Not always will the choice you make be the right one, not always will there be a clear reasoning, not always will the choice be the best one and not always, what you find, will be what you expected or hoped for.
However ,with time, you will understand that there is no way to turn back or to take the alternative path, and so absolutely ,do not let your soul consume you. What happens to us is inevitable and nobody can prevent it from happening. Let us be strong in our decisions, knowing that we have our limits. If something goes wrong or if we don’t find what we are looking for, accept it for what you will. Life after all, is only choices to make, just choices.
He spread out his arms, letting the sun’s rays warm the palms of his hands, he closed his eyes and started to tell the tale......
Once upon a time, in a place far, far away, there was a large forest, there were lush woods, full of tall trees. Trees with enormous foliage ,that created amazing shapes and magical designs, from the sunlight that shone through, mixing mysteriously shadows and light. Moving within these woods ,even the most insensitive were left amazed, yet attracted by all this splendor. These woods, these magical woods, were so immense, so limitless, so alive, that in this part of the world they named it, in a friendly sense, “Tommy”.
Those that lived it and observed it, close up, considered themselves fortunate, whilst those that came from afar to see it, would distance themselves with pain. Hence it was not rare to find strangers that would stay a few days, nearby, in a small tent, with a torch and little else.
Tommy, allowed itself to be enjoyed, to be watched and to be admired, by whomever approached it: there weren’t any exclusions, nor preferences, after all, it was only a forest.
Whomever could approach it, to admire it, but not everyone managed to experience it, as he did. A young farmer, a simple person, sweet, easygoing, one of those people that aren’t
easily noticed, one of those people that would never harm anything or anyone, one of those people that preferred to isolate themselves, rather than disturb others, one of those people that passed a large part of their lives in their own company.
He lived in a land distant from the “friendly” woods, a place in the country, a place that had a few thousand inhabitants, spread over three hills, a town square, a few restaurants, a church and many hay fields.
He spent his days working his family’s land and looking after the farm animals. When he had a free moment, he would go for long walks along the stream that flowed through the town.
Walking in silence, kicking the larger stones, watching them roll away, listening to their sound, staring towards the flowing water with its passage of flowing leaves and insects, was a source of energy for him; that relaxed his mind and his body, allowing him to be at peace with himself and with the world around him.
He certainly wasn’t a person that loved company or noise, but had friends, dear friends with whom he joked, with whom he had heard small talk about Tommy or “the woods” as they were called, in his part of the world.
He had heard so many fantastic stories, recounted by his friends, about that part of the world. Unique things, incredible things. All kinds of stories existed about Tommy, because those that were fortunate to see it, also had this need to describe and share this unique experience. So many stories that left one amazed, fantastic stories that seemed fairy tales. Magical stories that enticed all who listened. Stories that were wonderful to listen to, but even more incredible to experience. He said to himself,
“Why not see it in person? Why not experience those stories rather than listen to them? Why not go?”
Thinking about it, it wasn’t so far away and if he organized himself, he could find a day for himself and for Tommy. And so he did.
He caught the bus that crossed the Land of the Sun, and after a few hours listening to his heart, watching the slowly passing scenery, isolating himself completely, even from the person beside him that had attempted some small talk, he was in front of Tommy and he was stunned.
The colors ,the lights and the sounds were much more intense, than how they had been described. They were only lights and colors ,of course, but never in his life, had he seen something so intense and blinding , colors that left him confused and troubled. Shadows and light that mixed together, allowing the imagination to create fantasies. Intense emotions, strong and real, maybe too much so. Those magical shapes that flickered within it, were truly unique and fantastic.
The time passed slowly and he could do nothing else, other than watch it, thinking and observing every small detail.
He couldn’t but listen to every sound, to imagine, to smile. Tommy was “the max”, he said to himself, it was more than whatever his eyes had ever seen or his heart had ever perceived or his brain ever imagined.
None of the stories that had been described to him, were even close to what he was seeing and he understood why each person that had seen it, had this need to recount and describe all the beauty, the joy and the strength that radiated from that piece of land.
He didn’t know what to do, nor was he asking himself what to do. Small steps, long pauses and lots of thoughts. He went to the side of the road, and so, avoiding bothering anyone, and there he stayed for a long time, as if struck by lightning.
It wasn’t simple to remove himself from the woods. He waited for the sun to set, waited the last possible moment before leaving it. Awaiting the last bus to take home, it was with great pain and sadness, that he caught it. The silence and expectations, that been brought to Tommy, had been transformed into an immense emptiness, a feeling of loneliness.
Tommy had troubled him. Tommy had amazed him. Tommy had set his life upside down, and to think that he had only seen it “from behind”.
The days passed slowly, without sense, they were empty without Tommy. He did what he had to do, but without the care, the love and the passion of before. The land that he had cultivated with such dedication, had become only soil to turn over and the animals that gave him food, which he had attended to with such passion, now had become only animals. That encounter had made him even more silent, even more closed and thinking about it, even more sensitive.
Every moment of the day, each single moment, each thought, every single thought was for Tommy. For Him, for the young farmer, that encounter had been violent, incredible, magical.
There wasn’t a moment in which he didn’t think about how to go back there, about how to live it, about how to go back to Tommy. Each second, every single second of the day was passed in this way, with these thoughts, with these feelings, with these anxieties.
He thought about that light and the beauty of its colors, he thought about those magical designs, so unique, so shining.
He suffered, he truly suffered. Something had to change in his life, he knew, but not what? How? What was he supposed to do?
All he needed was an excuse, any excuse to try it and so it was.
He came to know, that near the bus stop, there was an inn and the landlady that ran it, was in need of a young person to help her ,with the land and the animals.
They were only voices, voices that reached him only by chance, hearing other people talk, but it was enough to give him a reason, to give him a possibility.
He took an old, shabby cloth bag, he didn’t remember whose it was, collected his belongings, threw in a few items of clothing, a few keepsakes and left.
You will understand ,once you have grown up, that when these things occur, something so intense that crosses the mind, but more so, the heart, there isn’t space to reflect, there isn’t any way to evaluate, can the dream become reality?
There isn’t the rationality, to understand, if what one has seen, is as it appears or if it is us, our mind and the need to believe, that makes it fantastic.
It is all of little importance, truly little, because when something unique and special, bursts into a life that is “normal” and maybe “monotonous”, with such force, with such energy, with such impetuousness, everything assumes a different dimension. Everything seems and becomes irrelevant, and if what happens is right or wrong, or if it is true or false, becomes of little importance, because what becomes important is the need to live that dream.
If life opens a door to you, to your dreams, we have only two possibilities: enter, hopeful of living them or close it, for fear that they are too beautiful to be true.
For our young farmer, those words, were an opportunity, they were the door that opened his dreams, they were the excuse to go back to a world that had taken him in.
He caught the bus, crossed the Land of the Sun, for the second time in a few months and with one’s heart in one’s mouth and with renewed enthusiasm, he found himself in front of Tommy.
How beautiful it was, incredible, maybe even more so than the first time. He watched it and observed it, in the same manner that he would look at a woman, his woman.
It was useless trying to hide it, Tommy was for him, passion and love.
He went towards the inn, hoping that a place truly existed, for him to find work, but without too much worry or trepidation because he was ready to look elsewhere or to do any other job.
Arriving near the inn, he waited a few moments before entering.