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Rated: E · Poetry · Experience · #2154482
A lone grave discovered in the forrest - Day 5 of NaPoWritMo

I. Proctor Hewett, 1829-1867

Abandoned tracks ramble with the dog
on a snowy, blowy April day.
She, nose to the ground, follows scent trails--
every fallen twig a message left behind,
each stop she doggy-texts her own
letting those who follow that she was here first.

She pulls, tugs the lead wanting to go off
the beaten track and I follow in her footsteps.
Massive oak, still clinging to leaves of yesteryear,
dominates small open meadow.
Granite stone at its base invites brief respite.
She flops, chewing over her surroundings.

But it isn't a mere rock, but stone of graven kind;
lying flat. Words carved, filled with moss and age,
require fingernail tracings to read. Winter ice
has created furrows. Laugh lines, perhaps?
Wrinkles, deep cracks - life lines. An ancient face
at the foot of the elder oak.

I. Proctor Hewett, 1829-1867. Thirty-six years old
when he died, feels young, even for back then.
Why, I wonder, out here? Long gone homestead perhaps?
Why the initial? Who was the I? If, indeed, he picked this space
to rest, then this tree would have been young, too.
Just a sapling a hundred and fifty some-odd years ago.

He chose a spot as yet untouched by developments,
quarter mile away from where the steam trains rolled,
mile or so from old depot. Was this a spot to jump off?
Yet someone must have known you, to carve the stone,
place it here, off, alone. The inital haunts me. Why
denied name. What was it? Who was I?

Why did you die? Medical or lead intrusion?
Stranger, sleeping just a little south-east of Hell.
Are you warm then? Did you leave a wife unknowing?
A mother grieving? Why did you go? And yet, stay.
There should be flowers blooming
yet snow brushes down, coating each dead leaf.

Wind blows bitter and I shiver. A tomb is a cold, cold seat.

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