“If it’s all you can do
to keep on trudging — there is still
somewhere deep within you
a beast shouting that the earth
is exactly what it wanted — ” • Mary Oliver, “Dream Work”

I pass the stone wall. A block and a half worth of piled rocks covered with moss.

On the the other side of the wall lies a Civil War graveyard. The ashes and dust that have become part of that cold earth once belonged to men, flesh and blood and soul men who died fighting.

I think of them. But really, I think of my own civil wars. The battles in my heart and mind, the tug of war between old tapes and new truths. The trenches, the pain, the glory. And this earth, this journey. It is what I want.

I touch the moss, breathe the moist air, and let the soft carpet of green remind me that even life and beauty grow in shaded and rocky ground.

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