Can we stop evil better? Turn slag to days? With each fresh beginning, purpose falls flat against the wall of discovery. If only we knew how easily a life can go wrong or how far to push the love. If only we could fix it all.
These back roads are endless. Below a horizon, they snake and charm. Dusted weeds rise in anticipation of the cleansing rain, then shimmer against an insistent breeze. Darn weeds, anyway.
I’ve learned to crave the wild things, a duckling lurching into the road then back again, a pocket gopher a-rush and anxious, a fawn lingering in an early spring field. For each day is a fingerprint in time, a series of friction ridges or impressions which set it apart from the millions of others which have gone before. Each day embraces a story; we catch slices, a streak, that brash and loud. We play off a stunning sunset while sitting next to a lover or friend, and talk of ghosts and shooting stars at a winter’s campfire, all pieces of the whole.
The most interesting thing is the posturing of people as we talk to others. We all seem to do it, like to look good, wear a smile, and that’s okay, but oh isn’t it predictable, Clyde? And Carol still wears her little golden earrings in Season 7 of The Walking Dead. See? Keep grit in your hope. Keep it rough and ready.
Chila Woychik is of German/French heritage, originally from the beautiful land of Bavaria. She has been published in numerous journals including Cimarron and Passages North, and has released an essay collection, Singing the Land: A Rural Chronology (Shanti Arts, 2020). She won Storm Cellar’s 2019 Flash Majeure Contest and Emry’s 2016 Linda Julian Creative Nonfiction Award. These days she roams the Iowan outback, lives with her husband of several decades, and tends sheep, chickens, and two aging barn cats. She also edits the Eastern Iowa Review. www.chilawoychik.com