Mysterious Places
Nora Ausman

A cold wind blows across the water, sending ripples that encase the lake in consecutive circles.
The pine trees just beyond the beach whisper and sway as they shift in the wind.
Far in the middle of the lake, a lonesome cottage sits on an abandoned island.
It doesn’t make a sound, not even a creak, as the moon slowly rises above the lake.
A lone wolf cries out in the milky moonlight.
A little tree dances by itself on a rocky hill.
A gaping cave offers no one but itself company as the lake falls asleep.
Creatures all around are sleeping, but all of them alone.
All alone, without another one of their kind to offer comfort.
Are there more in hiding, or are they lost without a way home?
Do the entities of this lake choose a solitary lifestyle?
Why do they choose to be alone?
Are they afraid of being hurt?
Is it too much to try something new?
Only the deepest part of the lake holds the answers, the answers that have been buried for far too long.
Deep beneath the water, past all the rock and mud, lies the answer to the lake’s lonesomeness.
If there was a soul willing to find it, it might free more than the lake.
It might free the whole forest.