The Snowman of the North
The wind rushes by as I make my way slowly to the birthplace of my people. The wind stings my eyes, but I don't need them to walk this path. I have walked it more times than I can count. Yet, this is the only time I have walked it alone. The rush of the wind dulls out any other sounds or thought. The only thing to focus on is the increasing amount of snow and the decreasing temperature. I stand behind a tree and move my walking stick to lean against my shoulder. I remove the animal fur from around my hands and begin to rub them. However, they are too frozen to accurately spread warmth. I bring my hands to my face and breathe into them. The hoarse breath does little more for my hands than trying to rub the cold away. I put my hands back into the fur and move my walking stick back to my left hand.
As I walk around the tree back against the wind, I force my body farther down and begin to move forward. The seconds seem like hours, but I make my way slowly. This will be the last time. No one else will come here. The thought enters my mind and I cannot stop the emotions from coming. The loud singing and dancing of my people during the winter festival. The terrifying hunt for food among other deadly killers. The love of family being close in the cave. The sound of the wind howling outside. The silence as someone else goes to meet the Great Dark.
The flash of memory stops me in my walk. I stand there and fell the despair of my people. We, the Great Snowmen of the North, fell one after another. Hunger. Cold. Wolves. We who knew more about the cold than any other tribe died from it. The beasts we hunted are now frozen. The caves that were warm are now stone cold. There is no one else but me. I am the last. With this thought, I start moving again. For the last time, my birthplace will welcome home another family member. Though none welcome me, I chose to die where it all began. After a few more minutes of struggling against the wind, I see the decline to the valley below. A new surge of energy spreads through my body as I go over the hill. Down below, I can see the valley covered in ice. Yet, even in ice, it is still more beautiful than any other place. The spree to the hill takes it toll. I fall in exhaustion. I have made it home. Goodbye, you Men of the North. No one else will come here. This was the last time. I close me eyes and see no more.
-Forward 1500 Years-
"I've found it! The Lost Valley!" I exclaim to my team behind me. They all rush to gather around me. We stand on the rim of a crater with a beautiful green valley in the middle. "Well done, Thomas! You were right with your calculations." The director congratulates me. I feel the joy and excitement rush through my body. We all begin to make the decent into the valley when one of the new recruits falls. We rush over to him to find that he tripped over a skeleton. Or part of one.
We kneel down and examine the ruins. "What do you make of it, Thomas?" Fredrick asks in his Scottish ascent. I shake my head as I examine the distance from the valley and our location. "I don't know. His bone structure is of the time period, but it shouldn't be this far away." I express my confusion. We throw around ideas, but nothing too concrete. "Let's go over it later. I want a look at that valley before the sun goes down." The director says ending the discussion. My team get up and start to head down. The new recruit is helped back to the main site. I stay behind looking at the remains of the skeleton. I shake my head and race to meet up with my team.
The 8 lb. Book
(The story of a textbook)
Oh, how I hate you, you 8 lb. book of droning knowledge.
Oh, how I wish you were smaller and so much more entertaining.
Oh, how your explanations never reach an end or meaning.
Oh, how can I read another page, another sentence, another word.
Oh, how can we be expected to know you through and through.
Oh, how I wish I could absorb you without reading you.
Oh, how long until the test on you.
Oh, how much more of this agony must I be subject to.
Oh, how grateful I am that the end is in sight.
Oh, fuck, I should have read you more...you 8 lb. book.
The Land of Fiction
Logophile. A strange and somewhat questionable term, but whose meaning describes so many. A lover of books. Yet, how does one become a “lover of books”? What qualifies a person to be one? Is it the young kid who waits up every night to hear one more bed story? Or is it the college student who is reading yet another chapter on their designated degree? Oh, I know. It is that elderly man who sits down at the breakfast table with the latest newspaper copy open in front of him? Are these people logophiles?
To become a "lover of books", one has to fall in love, right? Instead of being that little kid who wanted a bed story, I was the one who wanted to stay just 10 more minutes outside playing. Books were seen as things of wisdom that my parents would look at ocasionally. Nothing I as a child would. However, the day came when these "knowledge holders" became something else: forced learning. Oh, how the days would go so slow as I was forced to sit and look at words on a page while the sun was shinning. After suffering for six years, my outlook of books was the same if not worse. Until, I was left out of the fun school trip because I didn't earn enough points for reading those "forced learning knowledge holders".
With a vow of retribution, I began to partake of the "knowledge holders". However, this vow turned into a statement of retribution, then a half-hearted murmur. By forcing myself to read, I began to fall in love with what I was reading. So, what book broke through the border into the land of fiction? Eragon by Christopher Paolini stopped my young heart and sent it soaring with a dragon across Alagaesia. And over my many years of visiting Middle Earth, Hogwarts, The Capital and the like, I have fallen deeper and deeper in love with those "knowledge holders".
So, what makes a "lover of books"? A logophile is someone who cherishes the rectangular pieces of knowledge passed down from generation to generation. Someone who can't stop in the middle of a binge-reading just because the clock hit 10 o'clock. Someone who instantly calms down when in a room filled with books. Or who sees a comfy chair and just wants to read.