Memories are like the branches of your favorite tree. They twist and turn like they’re in their own private caverns, traveling by a map only they know. And unlike footprints in the snow, they’re always there, even if you don’t remember them in the moment.

When something has an -x, I expect big things. Matrix. Exodus. Vortex. The words feel so fixed, so weathered by our fluctuatingly accurate memories that they’ve been etched into permanence along side the things we say and don’t understand.

If I could, I would, so I should, but I just can’t. Tiny little words. If they’d had -x’s, maybe they’d take us somewhere. I like to believe that x marks the spot, and that our branches are searching for buried treasure in the sky, and that when times are tough it’s just because the tunnels have gone dark for a moment, that when a canary stops singing, it’s just because it lost its voice and needs to rest. Because when branches rest, they become roots.


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