The Lostlands

There once was, many seasons ago, two friends. One was the cheerful Lucy, the other… I cannot remember. Lucy and her friend frolicked in a secret little place which they named the Lostlands.

You see, summers ago Lucy had crossed the Border of Reality and Fantasy. She had been walking on her own… until she saw a blue hose, triple-thrown on a nail, pinned on the wall of a house. There was a gate next to the wall. It swung open and she had crossed the invisible Border. The whisper-trees had passed along the message of a new stranger to their Queen.

There, in the Lostlands, the grass was long and lazy. The days were relatively short, and the whisper-trees, red and slender branches drooping with raindrops, whispered into the passing wind. Lucy’s toes felt numb, her head light. She saw a daffodil patch, many red bikes tied to  the gate, and almost invisible sprites and fairies leaping from branch to branch. It was then that the Queen of the Lostlands had magically sent her back home. She, of course, told her parents of this wonderful discovery, but as always, they had assumed she was “up to her games and imagination” again.

A few weeks later, she met the nameless girl and they had become close friends. She had found someone who, at last, believed her unbelievable story. Then, it became part of their routine to visit the Lostlands. By then, the Queen and the Lostlands inhabitants had gotten used tho their sudden visits.

But one fateful day, Lucy’s father got a new job in a different and far-away city. Sadly, Lucy bid her friend goodbye and they visited the Lostlands one last time.

From then on, the nameless girl never visited the Lostlands again, for she was too filled with bitter sadness and longing for Lucy to come back. So the Lostlands were forever lost, shrunken and wizened from the lack of happiness.

But they say that only a child, who has an imagination and believes, may find the Lostlands and heal it of bitterness. And so, in the late days of spring, you must find a long-forgotten neighbourhood in the middle of a bustling continent.

There, the grass grows long and lazy,

the days turn short and hazy,

the whisper-trees’ branches droop low, heavy with raindrops.

Your toes will feel numb and your head light.

You’ll see a patch where daffodils grow,

four and plenty red bikes standing in a row,

a thrice-slung blue hose hanging on a nail.

And there, the rusty black gate will swing open, and you will once more find the Lostlands where Lucy and her friend once strayed. If you have enough courage, imagination, and dreams, you will bring spring to the dry, cold winter lands.

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