A profusely rich aroma lingers between the cliff walls carried by tiny particles of the waterfall’s mist. A gentle sweeping breeze tucks each particle in every crack, crevice, and imperfection of the rocks. The mist has been coating the rock walls in layers of slick grim for hundreds of years, and the smell is unlike any other. It’s quickly associated with fresh greens and damp dirt, but just as commonly dismissed as ordinary nature.
The caves, however, cannot be easily overlooked. Every surface is covered with the evidence of another life, a story among ruins abandoned for more favorable advances in evolution.
The pillars were carved by a blind man’s seeing hands. The boulder was the playground of energetic children. Behind the waterfall was a lovers’ quiet moment. Inside the cave, a mother had looked upon her seconds-old first born with adoring eyes while the father struggled to find food for his new family. The raging river whisked away the dead and caught the tears of those they left behind. Up and along the cliff wall, away from the mist and scaled by boys made to men, was the handprints of victors, and below, tucked in an untouched dry crevice, was the blood of the fallen.
This was a life. This was a home. Now, it is a treasure.
Art by Jonathan Kirtz
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