Drabble 52 – Nemophilist

Drabble 52 – Nemophilist

Nemophilist
Moss by Andrew Hill

It’s been a year of drabbles. Well, a little over a year–I missed one or two along the way for a variety of reasons, but even I cut myself some slack on occasion.

I suppose, then, this is a time for reflection. What have I learned in the last year? Putting my writing out there isn’t quite as terrifying as it was a year ago. Since this time last year, I’ve accumulated 11 rejection letters from various SFF magazines. After the last one, I just shrugged and moved on. Sometimes a story isn’t a good fit, and sometimes your story is several years old and no longer reflective of the current state of your writing. It’s fine; you’re growing.

This weekend I read over all that poetry I wrote last year for NaPoWriMo, and even dug one out, tidied it up a bit, slapped a title on it, and sent it out for submission. Poetry might still feel like trying to use a Ouija board in the dark to me, but I seem to be at least a bit better than I think I am. I’m probably never going to write that dreamy, ethereal poetry that makes me scratch my head and wonder what it all means, but some of the language I worked in there was interesting, and I was more honest with my emotions than usual. That’s something.

It’s been a long year, and an arduous one at times. I’ve learned a lot. I have a lot left to learn.

Anyway, here’s a drabble.

NEMOPHILIST

(Noun: Greek νέμω for “wooded pasture, glade” + Greek philist for “lover of”)

A person with a strong fondness for the woods and forests.

Her teeth are green as moss, and her black, shiny eyes blink out from the dark places between trees. Her fingers scuttle like spiders across tree bark. Her howls send shivers up the spines of trespassers.

It’s not that she’s evil, though she is most certainly a monster. Nails brown and caked with earth, skin poisonous, she stalks through the woods with purpose, always scanning from the unfamiliar. Sometimes birds perch on her pointed shoulders and pull worms from her skin.

She is most certainly a monster, all teeth and claw and eyes, but a caretaker, and a protector too.

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