What's On The Other Side Of The Fence? (An Essay)

What's On The Other Side Of The Fence? (An Essay)

A term that I’ve never truly understood:

The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence

To me, the grass looks exactly the same. Both sides are lush, and bright. There are the crisp browns, yellows, oranges, and reds of leaves dotting the deep sea of green. The grass is the same, but how about something no one ever mentions? What about the mountains? Are the mountains on the other side of the fence higher? Does the yellow sun shine more brightly on the other side, lighting up the colored trees of fall growing on the hillside? Will the air be friendlier, alive with the warmth and cheer of spring, only with the deep colors of the fall? And what about the animals, do the birds sing louder, with more passion in their voices? Do the crickets scream with all of their might, daring me to scream along? Does the air smell of flowers, and is the silence broken by the rushing of waterfalls? Are the cotton candy clouds softer, wafting close enough to reach out and touch as the caress of sweet, velvety fluff rubs against my arm? I wish to see the mountains on the other side of the fence.

Or perhaps the mountains on the other side are just like the grass. The mountains are just as they look. They’re like speed bumps from this distance. Perhaps the sun is just as dull on either side, as we share one sun, risen high in the bright blue sky. The air is probably the same up there so high, the cold biting furiously at my nose and chilling my small, pale fingers, even while tucked away in the pockets of my hoodie. I bet the animals are exactly the same. The birds chirp softly, singing a tune of frozen sorrow instead of that of joy. The lazy crickets do nothing but hum a quiet tune, going silent as I pass them, as if they don’t want me to join in with their small choir. The mountains will smell just like down here, like mud and rain, with the bite of cold added to every deep breath. Perhaps the sound will be nothing but the violent crunching of leaves under my feet and the whispers of the wind dancing through the trees. Maybe the dark clouds are just the same, small balls of cotton drifting far out of reach, teasing me as I can only hope to catch one someday. I no longer wish the see those mountains; the disappointment would be too great to bear as my heart tells stories of a beautiful new land, just out of reach on the other side of the fence.

But, why can’t my side of the fence be beautiful? The size of the mountains won’t have to take away the fact of its breathtaking beauty. Why must we describe the sun as dull? Perhaps the loving sun is protecting me, giving me only a small amount of light as to not harm my eyes. The air nips painfully at my face and hands so that I have an excuse to wear my favorite fluffy sweaters and drink hot chocolate by the fire as I watch the orange and yellow flames lick at the logs thrown in, a past time I’ve always enjoyed. It’s possible that the animals all whisper encouraging words softly enough that I can also enjoy the sound of the leaves and the wind, a soothing combination that always puts me at ease, especially on the most stressful of days. The creamy clouds are high up in the sky to remind me I must always keep my chin up, and my eyes on greater things. I no longer need to see the mountains. I can enjoy the sweet view from the comforts of my own side of the fence.


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