Place Where You Live:

“The Caves,” aka The Piasa Bird, Alton, Illinois

Image in inside the caves

The Caves, carved by centuries of erosion and environmental factors have become a special place to me. Their walls tell stories of the past. Spray paint depicts tales of rebellious teens and devastating break ups while, nestled in the limestone, fossils of organisms as old as time convey past lives. I have ventured into the caves with family, friends, and lovers, creating a vast array of memories. The significance of the caves creates a burning desire to preserve them. Already, people have taken advantage of the environment, discarding mountains of litter that distracts from the caves natural beauty. I’ve previously attempted to clean up the area but it’s to no prevail. I long to protect the region for future generations, protecting its treasured memories. The Caves feel like home. They will forever be my favorite wild place.