Along the banks of the Summerland river the roads were washed out. Half-submerged playgrounds, the sound of the current a counterpoint to the voices of the city, the river splitting reflected light across the ceiling of the cold white room. Outside, shoreline, heartlike, the stones and migrated sea-glass washed up onto the road, the docks long lost. Not so much a hiding place as a womb for the germination of her thoughts, she planted her journals out in the fields, not staying long enough to see what sprouted up, struggling for sunlight, new worlds meshed from the old. Airbourne harvesters sifted the grain, the pages, the clouds, utilizing these components for whatever purpose the automated pilots saw fit. They waved to her, and she waved back. The earth was filled with portals in those days.

The enigmas all unraveled, the ladders all pulled back up into the sky, the lessons scrubbed from the minds of the pupils, the great return begins. The pulse was moving into different time-signatures, recapitulating with the hum of the ghost trains. There was no wind and no pathway for her to follow, sniffing the air like a wolf, so difficult to find a direction, the magnets confusing her compass, all the mapmakers dead with their children uninterested in continuing the family traditions, hyacinth in heir hair, content to hang from the bottoms of bridges and suck on hardened fermented honey and try not to think about the culling to come, the death of the grain, the last of the harvest.

the exit is hidden within the exit