On Solitude

For a time, I culled sanctuary from the Faroe Islands, pulled up my roots and withdrew into the mossy, verdant interior of these odd treeless hills poking up out of the North Atlantic where few ventured, excepting the ubiquitous sheep and the pervasive dew which clung to my face and hands like a cool gel. Snailish, I pulled in to the house in Klaksvik, shy of sound and disturbance, hesitant, reluctant to move. These islands lie so far from everything familiar, yet some make home here, fill its corners with sweet caramels, tell stories of their travels and share pasta dinners upstairs late at night.  I dug in to their voices and crept close to comfort there at the kitchen table, among strangers.  There I gathered my memories around me like old friends and forgot to mark the time, slept without dreams and woke when sleep left me.  In curiosity and silence, I walked roads, explored tunnels, discovered the contours of the landscape, wanting the warm sun.  I felt the cold weight of isolation in that lonely place, and felt the burden of my own muddled solitude, there in that eighteen-island archipelago full of storms and fog, unwelcoming yet stubbornly lovely, mysterious and rare.

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