The Old Stone Wall
We wander, both, the crisp clear slopes of autumn,
Through scattered leaves of faded, fallen color.
For me, a carefree hour, or maybe two.
The stone wall, though, has twice outlived its builder:
He who plucked the granite from heavy, stubborn soil.
Dragging, rolling, hefting the puzzle pieces into place.
That wall and man shared much in common,
in their struggle to tame nature’s endless march.
Rugged, stalwart, they took the character of an unyielding land,
framed fields that winter buried deep in drifted white,
that spring sprinkled with tender newborn calves,
and summer balanced barefoot children on the winding way.
In time, the passing years gathered up the man
and crusted stone with olive moss and lichen gray.
Stumbling with age and witness to a different time,
still, there are stories harbored here,
meaning to be found in the wall’s enduring presence,
if only that, when I am gone, the silent stones will stay.