The Writers of Half Hollow Hills: Transcendence

Some people can sleep on a bed of nails. Others need a comfy mattress.

Still others, mainly princesses, can t sleep if a pea is nestled in a stack of feather mattresses. Me, I prefer to stretch out, meditate, and levitate. Come along with me on my journey, if you dare.

A sunny day; puffy white clouds drifting in the blue sky above; luscious green grass below. I stretch out on the cool grass and inhale its fresh smell. I breathe in through my nose and out through my mouth. I breathe slowly, ever so slowly. I feel my breath flowing through my body. I feel the sun warming my body.

My neck feels tight; my shoulders feel hunched, my brows feel like they re knit together. I repeat my mantra, let go; let go.   I send extra warmth and breath to my tense areas. I m relishing the warmth of the sun. My stress is melting away; seeping through the pores of my skin like melted butter seeps through a sieve. I feel at one with the sun.

I no longer feel the grass beneath my body.   I am rising slowly, ever so slowly, levitating above the grass. My body is weightless. I am no longer aware of my body parts: my arms, my legs, my head. I am an amorphous mass indistinguishable from the grass and the sun and the sky.

I continue to breathe slowly, deeply. My breath is filling me completely. I want to feel like this forever.

I am aware of my spirit rising out of my body. I look down and see my body resting on the green grass below. I wonder how my expansive spirit ever fit into that small body. I am hovering above my body. I am no longer tethered to my body.   I am a free spirit. Free and floating.

If I don t return to my body now, I will float away forever.   Just maybe?   Maybe? Maaaa…

Elaine Pasquali

Stream of Unconsciousness

and it s because when I think about it, truly, deeply, it resonates with me, like the smell of a campfire on a summer night. The images and memories flooding back into the basin of my brain, swiftly moving me from time after time, until, I am weightless. Until, I am surrounded by experiences once camp, that have been transformed by the mere passing of time to a stature of magical. The good times, the era in our lives when all was young and new and perfect, the years when innocence and responsibility was impervious to our true form. And so we float on and on and on down memory lanes that once were and were not, through ideas and manifestos sculpted by false recall and jagged scars, as if to ask the questions we never dared think. We wander amongst these dreamscape lands, amid obstacles taught with hindsight, looking for acceptance beneath our muddied toes. And for all we know, for all we read, and write, and analyze, the purpose of our endeavors, all but transcends the

David Matthew Friedman

Western Dreams Eastern Lives

There was a time I thought I might really want to live in the wild western plains of America when it was young.  How far west would I go from Long Island, would I pass Lincoln’s Illinois, the Mark Twain’s Mississippi River, Idaho’s potato farms who knows what adventures awaited me once I set up to go, I mean really go.  Why I might be just like my Great Aunts Minnie and Anna, sisters who moved from Prussia in 1890 all the way to New York City then separating on their journey to the states of California and Washington.   Year after year I wondered why they would leave their parents and brothers and all the comforts that family life would provide.  Sometimes I supposed they thought the air might be fresher living with buffalos and other such huge and wild creatures as New York City was not a place to spread yourself out for the kind of adventure the west might offer, even then before electricity automobiles really took over. That’s what I thought anyway as laid myself down to think into slumber what a life might be like, if only I could, if only I could be just like my Aunts. That was how it was until one night I opened my eyes and there before me was the biggest cattle ranch I had ever seen, at least on television shows.  This land was so vast and the sky a rich blue seen deep inside strong dark clouds of gray reaching out beyond the shades of browns and greens, I had had to search before I saw before the timber line to see there was a house of one story that appeared to be made of stone.  In another direction I spotted a wagon train of maybe thirty white covered coaches led by teams of one or two horses slowly moving along almost fading into the sunlight, and in another direction nothing but grazing buffalo, resting so comfortably; but how did I get here and why was I so at home. Rat-a-tat, rat-a-tat, hey, baby, baby I heard coming from somewhere else, I turned and I was back in my bed, the rain beating on the windows and the radio on my phone playing a familiar song.  Hmm, I thought, what just happened must have been a calling to me to join my Aunts in that faraway place, but why, I am not one to travel at least not more than along the east coast all the way to Florida or up to Vermont for a spin through Maine.   What did they want to tell me of the tale of what had been so long ago?   I laughed to myself and knew perhaps it was time to do it, one of these days I would take vacation to look for my vision. With the peace of wakefulness, I started back to drift off to sleep thinking for now it would not be necessary to travel away forever, away from all that I had worked so many years to call my home.  It occurred to me then that their time was another place in history when women wouldn’t dare cut their hair or live without the benefit of matrimony – and that maybe that was the secret of their travel; was it not the place they sought, but the freedom to be liberated, earn money, make decisions.  America and the wild west, those sweet words in a world so big is where I belong, I knew in an instant the wagon train added another coach, the buffalo sniffed the air and the house of stone saw another moon pass over its roof.
Submitted by Caren Lucas