There is a stain on the edge of the forest. There is a line marring the woods.
This line, it is a recent memory. A dream, perspiring from the pores of the trees. A dream, clinging to you long after you slip away.
You almost have to blur your eyes to see it. As though you were painting your dream upon reality. As though this line was not really here, on these trees, hanging above the forest floor.
It transects tree trunks, no caution in its presence.
This line, this memory, this stain. This forest, this water, this memory.
There was a time when the line would move. When the rains would fall and the line would rise. When the earth would breathe a liquid breath, kissing these woods with a sweet exhale. The line, in that time, was a pleasing companion. It was there for the egrets, the herons, the fish. It was there for the maples, the cypress, the oak. It was there for the springs, for the river, for the sea. It danced among the roots. It tickled the limestone and strengthened the youth.
And then, one day, this line began to rise. Above the sea, above the roots.
It rose above the springs, rising until it hung among the branches. Rising until it turned off the springs, until it turned off the river. It rose above the otter den and the salamander. The tortoise and the fox.
And then, the line was still.
There is a stain on the edge of the forest. There is a line marring the edge of the woods.
This line, it has a recent memory. A dream, perspiring from the pores of the trees. A dream where it tickled the limestone and danced among the roots.
It was there for the egrets, the heron, the fish. It was there for the springs, for the river, for the sea.
In the fall of 2015, the Rodman Dam was opened, allowing the Ocklawaha River to return to its historic channel and the water levels to drop by more than five feet. This happens approximately once every three to four years, and when it does, more than twenty springs–normally flooded by the waters held back by the dam–come alive again. Check out the teaser below for an upcoming documentary on these lost springs.