Wednesday, August 22, 2012

PA Prompt Discovery

A Walk Down a Dirt Road 

I set my timer twenty minutes
and walk, then walk back.

I walked to the end of second street.
I thought it was a dead end,
but discovered it continued as a dirt road.
I had eight minutes left, so I kept walking,
the uneven road reminding me
of hiking country paths as a child.

But here in the west--sage brush
bright blue sky with Mesa Verde to the south
(Table Green—the name was fitting
but for a lot of brown ridges
looking like a long row of teepees) and
to the north two blocks a busy highway.

It didn’t take long down that isolated road
before I realized I was walking in the home
of the homeless. Remains of campfires,
empty beer bottles, a discarded shoe box.

All I had with me was a timer. I continued to walk
and saw some of the residents returning home.
I told myself they were harmless.
When the timer went off
I turned around and headed back home.
Knowing they were behind me,
I prayed for protection and noted escape routes,
sad that this could have been a lovely walk
if it wasn’t for my fear.

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