Writing by Maria Wrang-Rasmussen. Illustration from Unsplash.
Three short-stemmed daffodils.
Looks like they were plucked, carried the 15-20 meters from their colleagues in the flower patch, possibly by a kind hand (maybe a child? or a couple in love?) only to then be discarded here, thoughtlessly, on the ground, next to the bins, on the concrete sidewalk by the co-op.
What do you do?
To pick up the flowers, go on to 2.
Leave them on the ground, scroll to 4.
As you bend down to pick up the flowers, you remember the time your first crush spontaneously picked a daffodil from that little field by the train station which always overgrew with yellow every spring, only to retire two weeks later to its natural state as the rather unremarkable backdrop to a zebra crossing and a selection of over-packed bike racks.
The flower was handed to you as you were walking somewhere together in the evening with the rest of your middle-school friend group. You can’t remember when exactly this happened or where you were going, but you remember the flower, and how you brought it home and put it first in water, then let it dry, whither, until it became a dusty member of the randomly assembled collection of nick-nack on your desk.
You keep walking down the street, towards the park, you’re running late.
Scroll to 5.
Getting something constructive out of this conversation would probably have been a lot easier if it wasn't for the fact that the crow was an asshole.
And now this is not just being said to be rude, the crow agreed with this, as a matter of fact I think he turned it up a notch just for the sake of it.
When you first initiated eye contact with this particular crow, it had not occurred to you that he would actually engage. Who would have thought a crow would have such strong opinions? I guess at the end of the day it’s just nice to have a chat.
Even if it’s with a nosy crow.
You continue walking down the street, towards the park.
You are sad to notice more flowers strewn on the ground, this time purple crocus, a large handful having suffered a concerning amount of trampling by uncaring pedestrians. There’s something quite sad about seeing flowers on the ground like that, after having spent so long waiting for the winter to end and finally here, now, growing from bulb to bud to flower.
You walk past a large house with old steel fencing. There are three perfect daffodils growing by the side of the path leading up to the house. You wonder if they were planted, or if they are weeds someone let grow, smiling every time they walked up their little path leading up to the large house, happy with the thought that those three flowers chose to live right there, on the path leading up to their house with the old steel fencing.
You’re running late, you’ll have to hurry! Scroll to 12.
The park is busy.
You see families, dogs, couples with linked arms.
The park is mowed, but you notice a couple of dandelions which have managed to spread their roots alongside the corners of the crew-cut grass.
You walk past a child asleep in a stroller parked in the shade. You remember this cd you used to play when you were younger,
to help you fall asleep,
or to train your imagination?
The voice would describe the parameters of a landscape, let you fill in the blanks and ask you what you were seeing.
you're in the forest,
you're in a clearing in the forest.
What do you see?
You would see animals, birds, broad, tall trees, way bigger than anything you'd ever seen in real life in the forests around your house. Large trunks of Redwoods, Cedars, and Baobabs were all tucked together side by side as you strolled through the paths you created.
You feel it getting warmer, scroll to 8.
You’ve missed imagining, go on to 6.
The sun heats your face, and you stop to enjoy it.
You feel a cold gust of wind which interrupts your warmth, scroll to 9.
You turn towards the path lined with trees, go on to 7.
You walk past the benches. Each one recalls a different memory, different moments with people who were nearer to you then than they are now. All of these events play out in your mind as you walk, play out in the space, feel close and distant, like it happened yesterday and a million years ago, at the same time and over and over yet always different.
You continue walking, scroll to 15.
You walk out of the park, go on to 11.
You think of when you stopped imagining forest clearings.
When was the last time you sat and imagined something that wasn't related to a stress-induced fever dream about forgetting to pay your council-tax or being all alone in the world because all your friends suddenly decided that what you said that time three years ago when you were three cans of g&t's in at a flat party was actually the worst thing anyone could ever have said, and they all just didn't know how to tell you until now?
A forest clearing would be quite nice.
Somewhere quiet, and warm.
You close your eyes, and imagine a forest.
You pull your coat tighter around your neck as you wait. You can see your breath
in front of you as you breathe out.
Continue walking, go on to 10.
The snow has a way of dampening everything. Like the sound has been muted. You walk across the park and listen in on the sound your feet make as they breach the top layer of the snow.
Swoosh, scroll to 16.
Two men in rain parkas are measuring a wall.
You stroll past and continue on your walk, now equaling x+95,50 in length.
Turn the corner, scroll to 14.
Keep walking ahead, scroll to 15.
You remove your jacket as you sit down to release some of the heat built up from the slight running-late-jog-esque walk.
A crow jumps down and stands front of you. It looks at you with this weird stare. Like he knows, he knows something you don't want him to know and there is nothing you can do about it because he is a bird. And he is judging you for it.
His friend joins in and they chatter on as if they have their own little crowing club that you hate NOT being invited to. The crow's friend looks at you over its shoulder, giving this “I know what you did, and I will make sure that you know that I know that you know” kind of grimace.
If crows had eyebrows, they’d be very, very, firmly scrunched.
The main crow, the one that was there all along, the one who looks like it’s probably always been right here in front of you on the bench on the path in the park, turns to you as well.
Why are you sitting there?
The crow stops its pecking and is now facing directly towards you.
Why are you imagining that I am talking to you?
Its directness takes you by surprise.
Continue staring at crow, go on to 13.
Question the crow's attitude, scroll to 3.
You stare at the crows as they continue to peck at the ground in front of you.
It’s getting cold.
You get up from the bench, put your jacket back on, and walk away.
Fuck ! ! !
You walked the wrong way. You're going to be even later now than you were already set to be, you're gonna have to run.
Turn around and pick up the pace, scroll back to 12.
You get to the edge of the park.
Someone is sitting on the bench you wanted to sit on. You don't know them.
You see they are getting up to leave, and rush across the grass before anyone else gets a chance to take their place.
Scroll to 12.
You arrive at the bench at the edge of the park.
You sit down,