Posts Tagged With: nature

Discovery 8: Breathing for Clouds


by Christopher Reilley

Genre: Poetry, Anthology

I throw my heart up into the sky –
honest joy pinwheeling on errant breeze.
Take this, this simple song and do what you will,
throw it into the abyss of the center,
hide it where the sand meets the sea,
bury it beneath the scales of monsters.

Surely somewhere, somewhen,
it will be found by one who needed to find it.
It will be measured, wondered about, recited.
Perhaps a high note might stun a pragmatist
or maybe the low throb of its rhythm
will find a gaunt heart to give its warmth to.

But mark me well, oh gentle reader,
one fine day, when the world least expects it
the love that is crafted in this simple voice
will spin and whirl, dip and dive, breathing for clouds.
One whose world needed exactly this voice to set it free
will slap life with fevered palm and be its master.

©2014 Christopher Reilley

Buy the collection on Amazon

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Real, fantastic places

Sometimes lovers of fantasy can find inspiration in real places. Here are some amazing, real places that could easily come right out of our favorite fantasy novels:

(Click pictures to see original articles)

  • The Crooked Forest is located right outside of Nowe Czarnowo, West Pomerania, Poland. The grove contains approximately 400 pine trees with bent trunks. They were planted sometime in 1939, but why or who made them crooked is unknown. 

  • Skaftafell’s blend of highland plateau, summer meadows and ice-blue glaciers are best explored by hiking, biking or climbing.

  • Jökulsárlón is a large glacial lake in southeast Iceland, on the borders of Vatnajökull National Park.

  • The Jeita Grotto in Lebanon

  • The jungle creeps back into the Temples of Angkor


  • Sedona, Arizona, a town surrounded by amazing natural red rock formations. (I’ve been here and it is way more impressive in person.)

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Source of Power and Technology Withdrawal

My trip was amazing! It was nothing like what I expected. I expected mountains, yes. That was a no-brainer. What I didn’t expect was technology withdrawal! 45 minutes before we got to our rental cabin, my phone service cut out. I had hopes that their website was correct and that they had wifi. But the page, last updated in 2009, was wrong. No email, no voicemail, no Facebook, no Google. It was a whistling vacuum of information. It was relaxing once I got over the struggle to reconnect.

Even the pay phone didn’t cooperate with me. I felt transported back in time standing in that booth, wrestling with the clunky cord and trying to follow the instructions of that female voice, pushing scratched metal buttons. The spider in the corner was not impressed.

So we explored, and it was great! The region was a mixture of small-town charm and spectacular views.

There were three dams up there, all lined up along the river: Gorge Dam, Diablo Dam, and Ross Dam. We drove along roads chipped into the mountainside and walked trails surrounded by metal rails so we wouldn’t plunge into the ravine. There was a sense that gravity was different here.


This is where my family gets 18% of our power. (That’s what the plaques and brochures said). This is why I headed up here in the first place, to show my kids where their tech gets its juice.

Tuesday evening came and my 11-year-old was giddy with excitement. He was overjoyed to return home in the morning to his internet connection, his cable TV, and his computer games. He’s getting to be that age. So we came home to use that 18% as much as possible (and they have been). I sure hope they remember though!


Categories: Reading | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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