I stepped out onto the porch and the hot summer air greeted me immediately. I jumped off the porch, careful not to become tangled up in the dry, thorny rose bushes and unlocked my bicycle from its post.

I mounted my vehicle and pedaled furiously down the alley out onto the street made of cracked pavement, broken glass, and trash. My bicycle rode over many bumps on the street, all of which I felt rattle my bones and my teeth.

I found myself at the Quad, a near heaven in the middle of campus, nearly deserted. I parked my bicycle by a tree, took the old, thin, stained quilt from my hand-knitted bag, and lay it on the grass underneath the overlapping arms of the nearby trees, which provided wonderful shade but still allowed a bit of sun to shine through the leaves, much like a green stained-glass window. I kicked off my worn-thin flip-flops, through which I could feel every rock I stepped on, and lay down on the quilt, feeling the warm breeze and the prickly grass under my ugly feet.

I took a library book out of my bag, feeling its soft cover and water-damaged pages. The Bell Jar. I was enjoying it immensely. In fact, I think it is a beautifully written book. Maybe I feel like Sylvia Plath was writing some things I have felt, or do feel. I love her description of a hot bath, and now that is one thing I so dearly want. I want to go home and have a hot bath, and possibly eat some scrambled eggs. She wrote about those, too.

I still have my apprehensions, though. I am enjoying and relating so much to a novel written by a mentally disturbed woman who eventually killed herself by sticking her head in the oven.

I chose to read my last chapter in a tree. There is a nice large one on campus by the art museum. I packed up my quilt and walked my bicycle out into the light – glittering, bright, and hot. I began climbing the tree. There was an older man sitting on a bench, reading. He stared at me, no doubt questionably. I found a comfortable fork in the branches and sat there, resting my back against the trunk of the monstrous tree. I climbed to the top, once or twice, but at that time, the branches were bare. These branches were thick with dark red leaves that shine ruby-like in the sunlight.

My cell phone fell out of my pocket. I thought about climbing down to get it, but then I decided against it. I dropped my bag down to meet my phone, and then my shoes followed. My feet dangled in the warm air as I read more of Plath’s words, and I do not think I have felt that peaceful in a long while.