From the unfinished writing challenge.
| It felt strange to be standing on flat land and being told by a tiny placard that a great mountain used to stand here. I can hear the rambling on of the tour guide in the background. He keeps going on and on about erosion and tectonic plates, lava flows and forgotten villages. I kick at the ground and imagine the dusty dirt as volcanic ash, grey flakes floating down like snow in December except it’s midsummer and in the nineties. What happened to the people that once lived in the shadow of the mountain? Were they all caught up in the rivers of lava? Did they escape and migrate elsewhere? My own theories entertained me more than the tour guide’s version.
I can imagine standing atop the mountain, feeling it quake and tremble, awaiting the momentous explosion of the elements. For now, I am stuck here on flat ground, staring at a mound of earth no taller than two story my apartment building. Had it truly eroded to this point? Dwindled down to nothing more than a hill, inactive and without a voice of its own. Only a small black piece of plastic on a post with white letters screaming the name of its previously awe-inspiring stature. Poor mountain, it was belittled just as I was, lost in time and seemingly insignificant to all that pass.
If only I could resurrect the once magnificent sight of this natural wonder. I would dance and pray and sing to the gods to allow another earth shattering eruption and watch with joy as the tour guide in his khaki shorts got whisked away on a river of lava along with all of these other boring tour goers. Wouldn’t it be grand? I’d stand and wave to them from atop the glorious mountain and continue to dance in a shower of ashes.
It would be spectacular.
Free at last.