Door to Narnia (Sandcastle 14.03)


I opened wardrobes in search of Narnia
but found only coats sorted on hangers
by season, softness, color
other accessories—
scarves, hats, a chaotic battlefield
of mismatched shoes littering the floor.

But no Narnia.

So I tried other doors—
closets in school,
boiler rooms in basements,
trapdoors to crawl spaces,
even kitchen cupboards.
But Narnia, I realized,
was a dimension
crafted within a man’s head,
and the key to finding it
was not
by opening a door
but rather a book.
How many worlds
did C.S. Lewis keep
locked in his mind
to visit at leisure?
Dimensions he never crafted
a key for any stranger to use,
only fragmented clues
scribbled in journals.

I keep many partial worlds in mine.
Ghosts and memories,
people whose existence flickered to life
the instant I wrote down a name,
forests and rivers
and dead butterflies,
a white sand beach where gray water
meets gray sky
spurned lovers
the haunted house at the corner
of Chestnut and Rose.

Becoming a true keysmith
takes time and patience.
A journal is a glimpse
through a window.
A book is the key
to the door.

I stopped hunting for Narnia
when I found Avilésor,
and I feverishly
but painstakingly
crafted a key
to another dimension.

Step into a bookstore.

It’s quiet
so innocent and
deceptively peaceful
considering the rows
upon rows
of paperbound keys
on the shelves
unlock doors leading to
dragon and wars
evils born in the darkest
depths of humanity’s
collective consciousness.

A book is the key.

Words are
the magic spell
to enter a new


Middle Earth








You’ve just crossed the threshold
a dimension that exists within
a human’s mind.

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I'm an award-winning fantasy author, artist, and photographer from La Porte, Indiana. My poetry, short fiction, and memoir works have been featured in various anthologies and journals since 2005, and several of my poems are available in the Indiana Poetry Archives. The first three novels in my Chronicles of Avilésor: War of the Realms series have received awards from Literary Titan.

After some time working as a freelance writer, I was shocked by how many website articles are actually written by paid "ghost writers" but published under the byline of a different author. It was a jolt seeing my articles presented as if they were written by a high-profile CEO or an industry expert with decades of experience. I'll be honest; it felt slimy and dishonest. I had none of the credentials readers assumed the author of the article actually had. Ghost writing is a perfectly legal, astonishingly common practice, and now, AI has entered the playing field to further muddy the waters. It's hard to trust who (or what) actually wrote the content you'll read online these days.

That's not the case here at On The Cobblestone Road. I do not and never will pay a ghost writer, then slap my name on their work as if I'd written it. This website is 100% authentic. No outsourcing. No ghost writing. No AI-generated content. It's just me... as it should be.

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