After a steep climb from beneath a deep depression away at the inlet of the cavern, I lingered there, under the lined overgrowth, buried ankle-deep within what seemed like a mountain of virgin white. My left index finger cautiously stretched toward the edge of a jutting limb, poising just above the chalky tips, toying with the tiny droplets of the dew upon the bed of irregular shaped snowflakes. Then out of the thin air with speed at full tilt, a burst of red-tailed hawks and sooty ravens swooped downward from some aloft hanging branches, leaving a great flurry of pale silver in their wake. The discarded crystals scattered all around, buffeted by the wind, spun side to side as they tumbled then at once, sank to the drenched terrain throughout.
For a moment, everything was silent. I stood there heedlessly caved-in, conspicuously lost as to seem utterly posed, deeply unnerved by the otherworldly ambiance. With a large gulp of air dragged in and racked up in my lungs, I fell backward to the snow-veiled earth, where I sensed the ground sloping away beneath my back, uneven and powdery, and where I was found some time much later, staring upward in stock-still silence at the wild blue yonder above me. The distant moon was glowing a saffron-red, gave way to a mosaic slate-gray of the midnight sky a fluid pane of plexi-glass, sharply cutting in two, the jarring realm of the living from the muffled world of the dead.
Lana Bella has a diverse work of poetry and flash fiction anthologized, published and forthcoming with more than eighty journals, including Aurorean Poetry, Chiron Review, Contrary Magazine, elsewhere, The Criterion Journal, The Voices Project, Poetry Quarterly, and Featured Artist with Quail Bell Magazine, among others. She resides in the coastal town of Nha Trang, Vietnam with her novelist husband and two frolicsome imps. https://www.facebook.com/niaallanpoe