Mountain Fall


Only way down.


In my dream, it is easy to get up the mountain but way of a series of one way doors which open out onto wooded paths under the canopy of a pine forest. There are a series of such doors, set at intervals up the face of a cliff that would otherwise be a sheer rock face in between the narrow plateaus where the doorways sit. 

No, getting up the mountain is easy: it’s getting back down that is difficult. 

There’s only one way down the mountain, and that is to go into the rushing green waters of the river and to take them over the waterfall. My guide assures me that this is the only way. Not everybody takes it- most people live on the mountain, it’s not a bad life, it just moves in only one direction.

Aren’t there rocks at the bottom? I want to know. 

Yes, there are rocks.

Won’t I be killed? I want to know. 

Maybe. No one has been killed before.

No one? How can that be?

No one knows, it’s a mystery. No one has complained about being killed, anyway.

I am not reassured. Still, I feel compelled to go down the mountain and this is the only way. My guide turns a table upside down- an ordinary, wooden dining room table- this will be the boat that takes me over the edge. This will be the thing that saves me. 

But how will it?

No one knows. 

I’m not alone in my plunge, although I don’t recall whether my companions are anybody that I know or have chosen. We climb into the upturned table and are swept over the brink of the falls, launched out from the edge to free-fall through thin air. There is a joint-numbing sensation of weightlessness and then a crash into the surface of the water below. The plunge is not as deep as I might’ve expected, thanks to the table. Beneath the surface of the water I can see that there are indeed rocks below, but somehow I have missed all of them. 

Now at the bottom, the only thing to do is to go up the mountain again. 

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on April 3, 2017.

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