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Archive for August, 2014

A Pilgrim’s Way

It is true that the way is made by walking.

We put one foot in front of the other,

Feel our walking on the good earth,

Connect to what has birthed us at the first dawn.

But it is also true

That the way is made by others’ walking before us.

We don’t see that on the road

But then we lift the latch,

Slip through the gate and

Grassy Path SmWalk a grassy path

That others have walked.

Cattle have been here

And sheep

And goats.

But human feet have flattened the grass

To make a rough path to follow.

They have left footprints in the coarse sand

Along the sea.

A few still linger in sight.

Man on north beach Iona Sm1

One stands on top of dark, volcanic rock

And looks out over a windy sea.

Another hooded figure walks slowly along the water,

Then leans over to choose a stone.

We walk on this beach, my friend and I.

Yet we are not the first pilgrims here.

The footsteps of thousands of others now washed to sea,

Their journeys have gone before ours began.

But their prayers remain,

Whirling around us like the wind,

As present as the fresh air we breathe in deeply,

As at the first dawn.

                                                                    (c) Sheila N. McJilton

                                                                    13 August, 2014

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