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Ancient Earth

Updated on December 3, 2010

ice crystals in the air

The Frozen Death of the Tundra

The pale yellow sun had barely broken through the ice crystals in the air as the boy slogged thru the tundra on legs which seemed heavier with every step he took. His arms hung by his side with no strength to wipe the ice from his frost-laden eyebrows. Icicles hung from the edge of his hood, hampering his sight. Frost, which seemed to surround him, had become a film of deception as all he saw danced and swirled, taunting him with graceful movements and its laughing voice. With head hung low he continued, one foot after the other, his unbending flesh fighting his every step.

Had there ever really been a soul in this frozen death; a living creature warm, welcoming. Would it have had the ability to speak hope to his heart; a spirit of life to point the way to life or a specter of death, laughing at the gullibility of such a weakened creature? He looked up at the blinding sea of snow. Waves and waves of white crystallized foam, billowing toward him in ever-increasing strength, sapping him of what little endurance he had left. Another surge of frozen suffering flew up in his eyes, blinding him, deterring him, daring him to defy the inevitable.

Ancient Earth

Walk, walk, walk; the steady drum of his heart; to follow its beat, instinctive. How long could his heart keep bending the will toward its destination? How long would it work as the compass moving him to a shelter of basic need? The hunger for warmth far outweighed his hunger for sustenance. His stomach even failed to pain him any longer feeling the hopelessness of longing and preferring instead to die in peace.

His mind, its roots in primordial fear, cried out in desperation but no sound came to his lips; just the silence, the never ending silence. What drove him on? Why not agree with all that fought against him? The veiled sun blinked painfully in the deepening shadows. There would be no help there. It too had betrayed and abandoned him. Was there nothing in this frozen hell to bring him hope?

He moved as in pace with the ancient turning of the earth. Alien and detached from earth’s primal blood yet driven to be a part of its life. A primitive ache from deep within the boy’s soul drew a thread of life from somewhere far beneath the frozen crust. The rumbles of the deep earth promising, a long awaited victory over the emotionless grip of ice.  



Abruptly, all stood still. The boy stopped. He waited. A shred of life moved slowly thru his veins. Instinct called. He listened. He stood. The sun stood. The wind stood. Ice crystals fell to the ground; the wind had taken away its hand. The boy waited in the ever-deepening stillness.

A drift of foreign wind came sliding past his frozen senses. Again, it swung its tendrils about his face. His mind jolted from the tender impact; the essence foreign but not foe. A long forgotten pledge surfaced with the caressing of its silent fingers. He moved impassively to follow its leading; drawn by its gentle call.  The boy lifted confused eyes and beheld a shadow of lengths.

Hope feebly lifted its head from deep in his breast. Move, to the shadows, there is safety in the shadows, was the instinctual call. The mystical form of familiar mist gathered around his shoulders holding him to his feet. Darker shadows, which held a star, formed on the earth; flickering, calling beckoning; pulling him deep within its mystery. The shadow loomed cavernous before him, the star lost in its depth. He could go no farther. His feet beseeched movement but he could move no more. His head fell forward and rested on the solid presence of the shadow.


The shadow opened its heart to the mystery of the star and blinded the boy in its sudden brightness and fierce warmth. He lifted his head. He blinked in recognition, his mind racing back to home. Before him, stood his mother with her hands on her hips, her lips pulled together in strong disapproval.

“Son, why must you always take so long to come home from school? The others have been home and done their chores? What am I to do with your imagination?” The boy blinked and smiled at the victorious outcome of his adventure.



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    • UlrikeGrace profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Canada

      *coffeesnob! Thank you for your gracious words, it was actually a very fun piece to write, had the most amazing fun doing it. Kids have the best imagination so I tried to just let mine run with the flow, oh to be a kid again, how much better my writing would be...Love you

      *Dave, yes I do too! It was always fun and I never needed to be bored. Wish I could convince children or parents of today to LET their kids develope their imaginations! Blessings to you my brother

      *Well Lynda, I hope you have a warm fire or heat register :) (ain't quite the same is it) to warm up beside. Cold may be beautiful as the crystals catch the glint of the sun but it is not friendly! Blessing to you girl.

      *Shannon...thanks for stopping in and having a read...I can relate as well, but then Ihave never been to the Far far north, to what they really do call the tundra in the dead of winter when all you see is cold and must be very frightening at times. Bless you sweetie

      *parrster, thank you for your encouragement. Coming from you I am greatly inspired to keep going. Thanks for your input and fellowship. I read your stuff over and over again. You are the king of descriptive in my books and use the metaphor to perfection! Bless you my friend

      Thanks all for your love and encouragement...Ulrike Grace

    • parrster profile image

      Richard Parr 

      8 years ago from Australia

      UlrikeGrace, your writing improves each time I stop by to read. I loved this. great description, wonderful use of metaphor, and a surprisingly neat ending. Both thumbs up.

    • profile image

      shannon b 

      8 years ago

      LOVE your descriptions!! Great story. Definitely can relate to the boy, as I find myself out n' about this time of the year on one of my walks, marveling, at the creation around me.....and my Creator.



    • lmmartin profile image


      8 years ago from Alberta and Florida

      I've had walks like that in the severe cold, and they weren't imaginary, either. Great description. I felt chilled reading it. Lynda

    • DavePrice profile image


      8 years ago from Sugar Grove, Ill

      I miss the inagination I had as a child.

    • profile image


      8 years ago


      This was soooo up and awesome! Powerfully written

    • UlrikeGrace profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Canada

      Thank you rls, you are always so encouraging...Bless you UlrikeGrace

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Wow Ulrike Grace! You had me on this one. Good job of drawing me in. Reminds me of some of younger days. Keep writing like that and you'll do just "fine." Your descriptions are excellent and powerful to move the emotions.


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