One of the rare times that I tripped, I happened to do so over the heads of a pair of gods, which I had mistaken for a pile of stones. Though they were sunk to their shoulders into the ground, they smiled contentedly at me. One had moss growing on its round cheeks and the other an orange lily blossom resting upon its rocky curls.
This I had knocked askew on my trip to the ground. I reached up to straighten it. “How did you two get stuck like this?”
“We sat down here and we just didn’t feel like getting back up,” said the mossy one. “I mean, look at this place.”
Trying not to think about how stone eyes could see, I took in the glade around us. Moss grew everywhere in a thick verdant carpet, clinging to the roots of stumps and the trunks of trees. A clear stream meandered by, babbling over stones in showers of spray, enticing heavy white blossoms up out of the rich, black earth. Blue and orange butterflies flitted lazily from shade to sun and back, wings flashing in the light. Vines grew up and around and over everything.
Taking a seat next to the gods, I worked off my shoes. Moss tickled my toes and cooled my aching heels; a large fern frond draped around my shoulders in welcome. This was a place for resting.
Knowing I could not stay, I released a wistful sigh.
“Do you see?” the blossom god asked.
My lungs filled with fresh air, but my bones felt weightier. I understood how one might become stone from tarrying here too long.
“Yes,” I said, “I believe I do.”
With that, I closed my eyes and fell asleep with a couple of stone gods for company.
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Little Blue Marble 2022: Warmer Worlds
Featuring “I Hope This Email Does Not Find You!”
The last eight years have been the warmest on record.
Little Blue Marble‘s anthology of speculative climate fiction and poetry from an international slate of authors mourns and hopes in equal measure for the fate of our world and its ecosystems.
May these visions of the future inspire collective action before climate chaos becomes irreversible.
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