Hazel Dormice at the Devil’s Jumps

Let us go then, you and I, to walk over hill, over hill, to the steady tramp of tired feet, to the adventures sought by tired feet, let us go, let us go! The way unfolds before us like a serpent in its winding, the way stretches out before us like a carpet unrolled, the way falls before us and we feel as though to go another step forward would be to walk at last right into the sky—our breath caught and let go, released in the disappointment of knowing how close and yet—

Physics. If only I could calculate the variables, we might leave the ground, but it’s an impossible task, one that I can’t do alone, and you’re not interested, you’ve already moved on to some other distraction more interesting to you than the question of how we might fly through the clouds so I’m left grasping for rainbows when the sun has left for warmer parts and the rain falls thick and grey.

The first attempt: Somewhere between the hedgerows, I thought I spotted a grey fox. He winked at me, he climbed a tree, how could this be? A fox in a tree? That was the first impossible thing before breakfast, and I believed it because it was real, but full English breakfasts weigh heavy on one’s stomach, so my thought balloons were not enough to carry me away on the breezes that blew, achoo achoo, on the breezes that blew me away (from -?).

The second attempt: There was a kite, and quite a kite there was. His head was white, and his tail was red, and his wings were spread to fly, no to float, to drift yet stand still, he was quite remote, and I dreamed that I caught him with cobweb reins, but he would not be harnessed, not this kite (how he hovered!), he quickly recovered and broke the thin thread, so I gave up and said my farewells to the chap, I bade him the happiest riding the wind, abiding the while my fate on the ground.

The third attempt: a puff of breath was all that it took to mail a thousand dandelion seeds to a thousand destinations (or maybe just one), much to the chagrin of those who have no souls with which to pay homage to their cheerful yellow faces. I made those tufted sailors into Horcruxes with the murder of a slug on the path, a spider in the bath, and myriad other tiny creatures, too small to avoid when their way intersects mine. And so I go, I go, aloft shall I go, but the flight is with sorrow, I alight with sorrow, for the magic is heavy and my bones are hollow and you do not follow, not this, not the line of thought that led me here now, to the point at the end where I fly over the hilltops. Gone is the blossom, it was carried away.

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