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Mountain and Trees

A celebration of dawn’s quiet joy

The ashen sky was dusted with creamy pearls. Street lamps cast their gentle aura across the unlit streets. No sounds could be heard; it was too late for the owls and wolves to be out but too early for a siren to shatter the deathly silence. A cool breeze churned through the crisp night air, changing it into something much softer and warmer. Suddenly, smears of color began to span the horizon, as if the world were catching fire.

The fiery inferno of sunrise began to lighten the world. A gentle, buttery light took a stroll through the dim town. Closed blinds let in the faintest strips of gold and copper, which stretched across walnut floors. Leaves rustled and trees swayed. The morning began to grow louder, and through the scattered pandemonium, the soft and delicate songs of the birds could be heard. Splintering light flooded into dreams. Soft murmurs drifted through open windows and into the open air.

Oh, and the food!

Every breakfast pan was a new sight or smell. Hands of all different colors, from chocolate brown to a sandy hue, reached into the dishes and frying pans to flip their pancakes or stir their stew. Spicy and sweet scents of food from around the world blended into a perfect mix, and if you stood on the street, you could breathe in the aroma of fresh bread and fiery curry and buttery croissants and rich coffee. Flavors melded together. Brightly colored fruits let sweet juices drip from the corners of mouths. Under every rooftop a family was gathered, making the time to treasure the morning and lock it away. Children turned the pages in their books. They talked with their brothers and sisters. They quickly scarfed down their lovingly prepared breakfasts. No face was without a smile.

At last, the fire on the horizon had spread across the whole landscape, and the world bathed itself in such beautiful tones of amber, emerald, sapphire, crimson, lilac, and tangerine. Even in the midst of all this, nothing could shine brighter than the warm smiles spread across every face.

Maggie Shelton
Maggie Shelton, 12
Bethesda, MD

Djin Thornton
Djin Thornton, 10
Purdys, NY