The broken back of a mule shines the horizon before the distant farmland. Drooping sun drops behind the torn and rustic barn face. Well water drifts beneath our feet as we pass along this battered road. It forks some fifty or so yards before us, and we seldom hesitate a glance in either direction.
Shot up stop sign guides our journey, or better, tries to stifle what little progress we make. Barbed wire electric fence hums a smooth yet, biting tune for our travels.
We carry what little possessions that come to mind and our thoughts weigh heavier still.
Each step left in dirt , an embodied, immediate, reminder of the past. Shallow strides along this narrow corridor of natural existence. Deeper treads mark the paths of some hurried travelers who came before us.
Our hair blows back from the chilly wind and the bare of our arms are littered with goosebumps and tiny hair standing tall.
The approach is steady to the end of the road with our destination still unknown, but slated by the bordering brush and sparse gravel between the crossroads.
A seasoned hare breaks in front of our trail, carrying with him a dragging leg that picks up the dirt with every slow hop. We pause to look upon the beast, hoping for some knowledge or instruction as to the direction for our next steps. He glances at us mildly before continuing on his trek towards the rougher right of the Y- pathway. His body melds into the darkness as the moon takes up the sky now.
We interlock fingers, her hand in mine, and step forward. Our pace is slower now. We begin to reach the fork, punctuated in the middle by an old oak tree whose leaves have left green for change into a burning orange and bleeding crimson. It’s limbs stretch free and tall.
I feel her grip tighten softly just before her fingers loosen, and our arms fall by our sides. She to the left across the darkened pavement cut with a fading yellow line, and me to the right following the weathered, broken rabbit along the jagged dirt pathway.
Neither of us look back, not even at one another, but we’re blanketed by the same stars still as our journeys continue. Our search for home remains at the forefront of our minds, and we travel on, forever entwined and never truly alone.