Ashleigh had grown roots.
It wasn’t something she intended to do, but having happened she couldn’t make it unhappen.
She had stood still too long, and the place had gotten to her. Feathers feelers came from the soles of her feet, reaching down into the dirt of the town while the dirt reached up to embrace them.
Threadlike things those roots were and her friends tried to convince her it wasn’t too late.
Her friends didn’t have roots. They could travel and stay gone and never feel the effects of being uprooted.
“Just come with us,” they would sing and coo. “There is no reason you can’t.”
She had intended to graduate. She had intended to go to college. She had intended to move to the big city, to get a good job. She had intended to grow, to go away, to never look back.
She stood in her own yard, looking at the horizon she could never cross. In her blood she could feel the history of the town, being fed to her by the hairs on her feet.
“You can grow here,” her mother told her. “You can thrive. I’ve done well. Look at your father. You’ll be happy like we’re happy.”
Her mother’s roots were strong and firmly planted. They reached and traveled far under the dirt of the town, embracing it all. In the spring her mother flowered. Her father was broad and strong and his roots so deep she thought he would live forever.
They had done very well. They were very happy.
But they could never leave. Never for long. Outside of the town her parents aged and wilted.
She knew it would be true for her too.
Her roots were young, but they were roots. They would grow far, like her mothers. They would grow deep like her fathers.
Closing her eyes she sighed and turned her face to the sun.
Ashleigh had grown roots, and now she would thrive.
Inspired by: Roots