• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 01

Paper Thin Corridors (or Fly Beyond Here Towards Your Own Dreams)

I was born with what they called ‘wings in my feet’; I just could not sit still, and in my head I was always going to faraway places. My desire to travel the world came before I learned how to write or read.

I wouldn’t say my childhood was fundamentally unhappy, but it was above all unrooted. I grew up without siblings, playing on my own, and going around the streets trying to find something to do. While my mother worked overtime to buy us food and pay the rent.

I didn’t mind so much to be alone; I used to pretend that life was a movie and I invented stories with interesting characters, as I jumped in and out of reality and I took them to bed with me.

In my stories I could go anywhere, I could be anyone, and I felt safer. Nothing could hurt me that much, or for longer than I could bear.

I think my writing started at the same time as I started flying. The open blank pages of notebooks soon become my favourite playground, filled with challenges and adventures I could conquer, and there was no limit to places I could visit and people I would meet. Now I could have my own pair of wings.

But as soon as my dresses became too short and my orthopaedic boots too tight, I knew it was time to fly to my biggest adventure yet; to leave the place I called home and all that was known to me. So I said goodbye to my mother, and for the first time, I found myself flying into crowded skies filled with others that like me, also dreamt of exploring beyond their front doors and back fences.


Paper Thin Corridors (or Fly Beyond Here Towards Your Own Dreams)

The adventures were no long childhood fictions, but part of my everyday non-fictional survival; and it was in the twilight of night, before dusk and after sunrise, amongst travellers of the world where I learned how to spell my name; I never felt so alive. Sleeping bags in squares under falling stars, strangers sharing stories, catching tails of lost rainbows, railways sleepers, following the clouds’ path, eating wild berries…

I did not know the reason or motivation behind my constant travelling, but inside I felt a compulsion to keep going; until after some misfortune, I finally landed in this garden, a small patch of land which I called ‘minha terra’, where I sow my dreams and I watched their seeds hatching into blooming trees; and the fruit trees fed (birds and) my young while tearing the sky above my straw hat, shading the dreams of my children, who were getting ready to fly beyond ‘here’ towards their own dreams.

Through the window, I watch the pale blue sky framing trembling leaves, catching the morning autumn light, touching dancing clouds metamorphosed into fantastic shapes, while iron birds create paper thin lines; new floating corridors for other travellers who are also trying to find a safe place to land.