Ahhhh, just to sit among the bushes and shrubbery, no ocean, no seagulls, no fishing boats. Just the scent of the volcanic soil, a black and white rabbit that stood at the trunk of a small tree watching you, suspicious of your motives. Butterflies perched lazily on leaves, their multicoloured wings fluttering as a gentle gust of wind swept through the trees. Small birds whistled in the tree lines, a donkey brayed in the distance, an army of ants marched across the fallen branch, the smell of sugar cane from the plantation just beyond the valley, the sky changes from morning gray to mid morning gold. Yes man, life is an endless summer on a tropical island.
In the rainforest, where the clouds hang over the trees, green and white creating a floating silver lining just above the tree tops. Green leaves sparkle as the grey light bounce off their dew sprinkled surface, monkeys sing in response to the chatter of the parrots. In some parts of the forest, the leaves are green cold, as mother’s eye attempt to escape the clouds. The scent of the soil fills the air, nature on simmer. Straying flower petals glides through the underbrush using natures transportation, settles in the yards, on the dirt roads and on the galvanized roofs.
Its a good day to wake up and smell the salt int the air. Watch the fishermen come in with the day’s catch. Watch the green leaves sway in the early morning breeze. Hear the parrots have a conversation in the forest behind the house. Listen to the birds whistle an unknown melody. Ahhh yes, Sunday morning, relax, simmer down and feel the peace.
Walk across the bridge, fade into the colours of fall. Feel the crisp, cool air tickle your lungs and the wind rushes through the trees creating a whirlpool of leaves across the forest floor and deer scamper across your path and in the air you can smell the firewood burning in the cabin on the hill. You smile to yourself as you anticipate sitting before the fire with a tall glass of cocoa tea. Ahhh yes, fall is upon us once more, its the time of year to cuddle up at night, listen to the wood crack and pop as you doze off to a peaceful slumber.
Its that time of the year, when the world of green gives way to constant colour, where there is no sharp edges, one colour blends into another, creating a whole different shade where they merge. And the air feels like you have just eaten a piece of winter fresh gum. These colours, they make up for the lack of summer sunshine, these colours makes you feel like you are walking in sunshine. Its the time when you hear the fist Christmas carols, When the sent of Thanks Giving meals permeate the air, and Granny is hustling to get the Christmas shopping done, buying things I know we will never use. Ahh yes, fall is like fools gold, something to remember when you are tracking through snow, with frozen noses and almost frost bitten fingers. Ahhh yes, site back and watch the world fade into fall colours.
Nothing like an early morning tropical rainfall, you know, when you can smell the mud, and the grass and the trees. Oh yes, you can even smell the mangoes, and the soursup and the plumbs. What better way to wake up than to smell all these scents tickle your nose, and you lay there, somewhere between a dream and reality, breathing deep, and in your head, you are standing on the edge of Grand Etang Lake, and a light drizzle creates bubbles on the lake’s surface, and suddenly you feel like walking in the rain, so you jumped out of bed, opened your window and is greeted by sparkling leaves. The sun had come out, you have missed your opportunity to go walking in the early morning tropical rain. But have no fear, it is the rainy season, tomorrow morning you will be waiting bright and early for the heavens to open up and cry.
I lay on the bed looking up at the ceiling. Sleepless nights were now part of my life. I was running through the forest, an AK-47 rifle in my hand. I heard the voices of soldiers as they chased me. The forest was dark despite the sun being high in the sky. My lungs were on fire as I maneuvered through the trees and bushes. Bullets whizzed by my head, hitting the trees, creating a buzzing noise in my head. Leaves flew into the air; branches fell in front of me. I hurdled over bodies. Some were still alive, begging for help.
I kept running as the footsteps of my pursuers grew closer. I was so panicked, I did not see the wounded man step out in front of me. Part of his face was blown off and one eye had tears of blood pouring out of it. He lifted his arm as if asking for mercy. I bumped into him and he fell backwards. I stopped and looked down at him. He was trying to get back up, his voice a mere gurgle as blood oozed out of his mouth. I reached out to him, but he fell back to the ground. I looked back and saw the approaching soldiers; I turned and ran off, my legs feeling like they would freeze up. I ran until I came to a precipice. It was about a sixty-foot drop, so I looked around for another escape route. Sweat poured down my face, getting into my eyes. I wiped it off and looked up just in time to see the soldiers standing in front of me. I wanted to run, but I knew I was cornered. I closed my eyes for a second hoping to block out my fate, but I opened my eyes and they were all pointing their M16 rifles at me. I watched as the bullets shot out of the rifles. The closer they got to me, the darker the scene became. I closed my eyes just as the bullets exploded in my body. I screamed, my voice disappearing into the darkness. I sat up in bed, my heart racing so fast, I almost fainted. My ex-wife moved a little asking me if I was alright. I mumbled that I was, got up and went to the bathroom. I looked at myself in the mirror. I was white as a red-headed step child. Sweat rolled down my face as a sudden chill went through my body. I splashed some water in my face, then walked back to the bedroom and stood over her for a moment. She looked so peaceful, that smile on her face. I hoped she was having a better dream than the one I’d just had. I crawled into bed and snuggled up against her. I always felt better when I was close to her. The scent of Egyptian Musk on her skin, the slow throbbing of her heartbeat; quite frankly, it was those moments that kept me sane.
On days, when I sat on the hill top, overlooking the forest, and the grey skies seem to have a golden tint to it, and the tree leaves are midnight green, and I can feel the moisture in the air, right before a light drizzle drenches my skin. It is that moment that I am closest to complete peace.
Houses built into the jungle, and the clouds hangs over their tin roofs as if protecting them from an attack from outer space. The sun reflects off the leaves, golden green, the sound of steel drums float above the tree tops, into the valley, across the stream , down the hill and out to sea.