Split rock jetted out of the meadow and leaned into the shadows. We had spent the day traversing around the meadow’s ponds to the other side of the rock, which was the north side. The ground was thick with sword ferns as tall as my waist and we found that a few other people were preparing to scramble up the rock. Our way up was steep and the rock was fairly smooth, but ferns and trees attempted to cling to this side, providing make shift handles to leverage ourselves. Standing at the top we could see the meadow, its many ponds reflecting the blue sky, and miles and miles of trees. A car drove away along the logging road that had brought us here.
The rock was split very much like a log you split for fire wood. A huge gash created the “inside” of the rock where I noticed others calling out to each other and climbing up with ropes. My parents answered my questions by stating that some people chose to come up the rock that way.
But now all was quite and the rock sat in the meadow, leaning into the shadows. The moon was bright lighting everything around me in the night and the rock, meadow, and trees were blue and calm. Next to me my sister had fallen asleep and just beyond her my parents. We lay between two canvas tarps resembling a can of sardines. My eyes moved up toward the sky and suddenly from my toes a large owl glided over our makeshift camp. She spanned the width of our little square and I thought for a fleeting moment that I could reach out and touch her. She took my breath and glided away.
The moon reappeared after her departure, verifying that the owl had left everything the same as it had been, blue and silent. I whispered, afraid to lose the magic, “Dad?” “Mom?” Silence. The moment was only mine.