A Lair

by Tomasz Kawecki

The house in Witowice Dolne is the house of my childhood. It is occupied by my eyes and by the ghosts I collected with great dedication during the first years of my life.
The house stands on the edge of a forest so green and virgin that you cannot help but happen upon magical creatures within it. Returning to its depths, I resume my adventures and rethink riddles left unresolved. I still seek the answers. My grandmother was my guide through this realm. It was she who led me into the forest. She addressed mushrooms, stones, and roots by their true names. Some she gave anthropomorphic features and carried home. Over the years, these objects filled the interior. Nothing was ever discarded—if she returned with something, it stayed with her forever. The house grew old with her. Everything within was subject to natural cycles.
When I was a child, we slept in the attic. The walls allowed in the wind on which outdoor noises were borne. I imagined I was sleeping in a treehouse in the middle of the forest. The mountain wind that whistled around the room made me shiver, but I was never afraid. We were safe because we were protected by my grandmother’s enchanted amulets. Huge roots resembling animals, bunches of plants, and pebbles arranged on the clay of the old stove watched over us. They reconciled the home with the dark forest.