Ghosts

Geographically speaking,
it is nothing —
a bend in the road called
Lincoln by the people who have always lived there,
and always will.

It might for a minute
capture the attention
of a small child traveling up Highway 61
in the back seat of his family’s car–
face pressed to window–
eyes hungry.

His curiosity, however, would fade
as quickly as it takes him
to slip
at 60 miles per hour
past:
a library, a cookhouse, a cluster of cabins.

But today something different happens
the family car slows and parks in the gravel lot
a chance for restless legs to stretch
and tired lungs to breathe venerated mountain air.

They might stay long enough to notice:

A rogue band of turkeys jumping in and out of trees
a vigilant quest for ripened apples.

Students, self-proclaimed contemplatives, walking–
Their voices consecrated and unused for the time being.

Deer seeking refuge from hunters.

Three dogs, each said to represent a member of the holy trinity.

Bread baking in more ovens than not.

Fires burning in woodstoves, if winter.

Prayers being offered up sacrificially
thanking God for this place and these people
and for Louis L’Amour and Whitman and Alvin Plantinga.

And for this anonymous bend in the road
called Lincoln by those few who have always–
and will always–
live there. TC mark

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