Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Second Snag

(i wrote this memoir for my english class and i thought you all might appreciate reading it)
It was a cold fall morning, a brisk, breeze swept through the small forest of scrub oaks. The tall pine tree that erupted from the middle was seemingly unfazed by the breeze, or the coming winter it clung to the needles of its branches like life itself. Meanwhile the scrub oaks shed the unwanted leaves with every breath of wind that came its way.
The crunching of the leaves beneath my feet kept me on edge. I urged my legs to carry me to the grand pine that had long haunted my dreams. My older brother had braved its timbers many times, and had built a tree fort that any boy would envy. Numerous times I had asked and been denied access to his safe haven. It was early morning and I had been careful to not awaken any members of my family, no one would deny me access to the fort this morning. I made my way to the base of the tree and looked up to see the journey that had tickled my brain for what seemed to be ages.
I jump and fell short of the lowest branch. A strained frown crept onto my face. The first snag of my journey had appeared so early on, the discouragement shot through my legs, I made a desperate leap for the branch. The discouragement fled and was replaced with a sweet feeling of ecstasy as my fingers wrapped around the lowest reaching limb. I pulled my torso level with the branch swung my left leg over. I gathered my balance and looked down to see what I had accomplished. It was meager compared to what I must yet traverse to find myself in the fort.
I slowly and carefully made my way up the branches closer and closer to the fort that no longer seemed a distant dream of a young boy, but the a reality that would soon be his. Impatience took a grip on me I was tired of the arduous climbing, and longed to taste the succor of my objective. It was in this moment of weakness that the poor judgment of a six year old became a dangerous thing. I saw a shortcut…directly above me was a branch that if I leaped for would cut my journey into a quarter of what it was to be. I reasoned with myself that if I did not make it, my feet would land safely on the branch again, and all would be well.
The wait was over, my confidence swelled, I made a desperate leap. Ecstasy did not find me, nor did the branch find my fingers. I prepared to land on the limb that I had jumped from, any second now I would be safe on it again. I was wrong, the branch I had planned to land on swept past my vision, my hands brushed it. My time had come I thought to myself, fear engulfed my very being I couldn’t utter a sound this was it, I was sure.
The gut wrenching fall seemed to never end, and when it did I was afraid to open my eyes. I waited for the pains of death to consume my body and leave me in utter agony until the angel of death came to take me away. But there was no pain. Is this what death felt like I pondered to myself. I gathered all the courage I could muster and opened my eyes. I was in the air ten feet from the ground, I had heard about out of body experiences, I surveyed the ground for my bloodied corpse to no avail. I had reached the second snag in my journey. My pants had caught on a branch. Relief swept over me like a cool breeze, relaxing me.
I shouted for someone to rescue me, a short while later my older brother emerged from the scrub oaks and chortled to himself. He left me alone and ran back through the forest to our home. He returned with my family, they all laughed at my predicament and took pictures. A while later they extracted me from the branch. I had learned a valuable lesson. All shortcuts have costs, this time I was grateful for such a snag.