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Elusive Wind Spirit


Just a couple days ago I found myself alone on a lonely path in some lonely woods. It was cold out, the way winter should feel despite living in a place where winter never shows itself. The branches on the trees ached. I know this because I could feel them and see them. Some bark crumbled off one of the branches. They made noises like they were about to snap, but they never did. Regardless, the ground was covered in small branches that had fallen from the trees. Those small branches made the floor seem like a nest, and I imagined myself a small bird inside a large home.

Just a couple days ago while I was sitting in the lonely woods I found myself being carried away by an elusive wind spirit. I let it happen as though it were meant to be, and after all, who is to say it isn’t? I let it carry my skin away, crawling under branches and soaring above them all at once, breaking into particles that I could not see but only feel. I was everywhere at once while being nowhere at all, or at least nowhere in existence. This is an elusive place that only an elusive wind spirit can go, and so I imaged it to be true, that I could be there as well, and so I was.

Some days I imagine myself a small child near a small house in a small valley between two huge mountains. I breathe in the smell of the cold forest despite the air feeling warm. I see fog in the distance despite the sun shining through in a patch where I am sitting. I don’t go in the small house because I know magic awaits outside, but I am happy to know that safety is only steps away. I imagine all of this as though it happened yesterday despite never being there at all. And perhaps, having never been there at all, I am able to be there.

In certain times, I imagine myself a small child floating in the middle of the ocean, not knowing how many hundreds of feet of water exist below me and not knowing how many miles of water exist around me. I imagine animals of non-existence existing underneath me, despite the water appearing calm. I imagine a storm of dangerous possibilities brewing above me, despite the sun shining wildly in my eyes. I have to close them, and so I do, and so I wake up from a dream.

There are dreams that seem real in no small measure, and reality that seems a nightmare. There are times of incredible happiness and dreams of mourning. At some point they blend together without a single soul realizing it, and our memories become dreams, and our dreams become memories. At some point, our nightmares become our fears and our fears become our future. At some point, our dreams take hold of our minds, and we think ourselves to be anywhere in existence.

And, if we are very lucky, our imaginations take hold and we believe ourselves to be anywhere in existence, and anywhere beyond existence as well.

A lesson in dreaming is a lesson in believing. I believe in nothing more than the power of my imagination. Because of it, I can exist anywhere and I so often I do.

It whistles at me in a pitch far greater than can be heard

and takes pains to kiss my skin lightly

making sure to deliver good intentions

rather than the burn of impending storm.

It is elusive like a great spirit in the ghost world,

much like one trapped in an old house

that curious people always try to find

but never will succeed in trapping.



{ 10 } Comments

  1. jeff | February 14, 2012 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    That looks like an Ansel Adams photo. Did you shoot it?

  2. Brooke Shaden | February 14, 2012 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    I did, at Yosemite – the Ansel Adams stomping ground ;-)

  3. Oscar | February 14, 2012 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    A woman after my own heart. I am in love with your writing.

  4. Alicia Savage | February 14, 2012 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    This is excellent Brooke! Beautiful! I love how your expression of words is so consistent and connected to the style of your work.

  5. Nika Witkowski | February 14, 2012 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    This is the stuff artistry is made of. If your spirit can fly, your work can too :)

  6. Liana Gandarillas | February 14, 2012 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    I can’t even tell you how perfectly that song matches your writing. If you ever go blind or something and can’t be a photographer, you need to look into writing…

  7. Sue | February 20, 2012 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    Hello Brooke,

    I’ve recently come across your work and I’m hooked. Your images, writings, and fearlessness has inspired me. I’m a forty-six year old mom who purchased a DSLR last year and I’m finally comfortable using the manual mode. Like you – I’ve always loved the arts and reading a good prose, but fear has always held me back from being creative. Thank you for inspiring me and sharing your knowledge. You are a beautiful soul. I’m currently viewing all your videos, viewing all your flicker photos, and catching up with reading your blog. And yes, taking time to study photography and shoot as often as often as I can.

  8. Guro Zahir Storskjær | February 29, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Always enjoy reading your blog.
    Your really good with words and ofcourse your pictures are stunners!
    Im not that good with word’s so I use photography to express my feelings.
    So it’s always so nice to reading you blog.

  9. Guro Zahir Storskjær | February 29, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Always enjoy reading your blog.
    Your really good with words and ofcourse your pictures are stunners!
    Im not that good with word’s so I use photography to express my feelings.
    So it’s always so nice to reading you blog.

  10. mg | March 10, 2012 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Brooke! Please consider doing a workshop in south Florida (Fort Lauderdale/Miami!)

    Please :(!?

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