Friday, June 15, 2018

Scholastic Spotlight: Olivia Data


Gold Key

Author: Olivia Data
8th Grade
Educator: David St. Peter

The sun flooded down
In a haze of golden light
That was broken by the treetops
With their overwhelming height
And so the light flew into fragments
Landing on the forest floor
And it cast the trees around it
As if in a book of lore

All of time seemed to stop
In the intertwining gold
In the dazzle and the sparkle
Cast upon the marigolds
That were hidden in the trees
In their nets of gnarled roots
Forming webs of woven majesty
Each with a different route

And the music of the silence
And the stillness of the woods
Spun a thread of serendipity
Around me where I stood
The euphoria of concord
Resonated in my soul
But things only last forever
Before time takes its toll

I heard the woods call out to me
I felt it in my heart
As the branches seemed to beckon me
Into their web of art
I wished that I could follow
But a voice within my head
Begged, Don’t answer, never answer
So I turned away instead

I knew not what came over me
I had nothing to hide
And yet my instinct tore me
From the calling of the pines
And as I navigated further
From the golden-shining glade
My heartbeat seemed to settle
But my fear did not quite fade

For the trail I took to get here
Should continue through the first
Not wind back through the forest
In a disconcerting blur
And shouldn’t it still be daytime
And if so, where is the light
For the gold’s faded to silver
And the afternoon to night

And with nighttime comes the nightmares
That in daylight seemed so faint
And with darkness comes a canvas
Onto which the nightmares paint
I knew trees couldn’t hurt me,
But I couldn’t shake the dread
That lurked in every shadow
In the corners of my head

Were there footsteps right behind me
Or just tricks played by my mind
Panic writhed inside my stomach
As tree branches intertwined
And I couldn’t shake the feeling
That someone was watching me
But when I turned ‘round to confront them,
There was no one I could see

But once I glanced behind me,
I could not quite seem to stop
I twitched at every rustle
Like a skittish, watchful hawk
Every split twig was a gunshot;
All the trees were silhouettes
Of the figures from my nightmares
And of dark, foreboding threats

The moonlight was no comfort
When it glistened on the leaves,
Spinning threads of silver gossamer
Around the silver trees
And the moonbeams seemed to alter
What I knew was really there
‘Till I was sprinting through a wonderland
Of all my greatest fears

My feet pounded the forest floor
And I began to quake
Did something sleep beneath the dirt?
I prayed it wouldn’t wake
Though I hurtled through the forest,
My fears were close behind
And it soon dawned upon me
I could neither run nor hide

For it will catch up to all of us;
Our bleak and bitter end
Yet this truth won’t stop our fleeing
From the monsters in our heads
Though the dark may prove us cowards
And our hopes aren’t what they seem,
For every silver nightmare
There comes a golden dream