Old Scars

My thoughts wander when I go hiking.

(My thoughts wander a lot, actually.)

I love how the same hike looks drastically different as the seasons progress.   This time of year, the green and hopeful underbrush has not yet started to grow. You can see far into the woods, endless lines of exposed tree trunks.   The trees closest to the trail are almost always marked with carvings: initials, expressions of love, inscrutable sayings, arrows, cardinal directions, swear words.

What is it about humanity that we can’t let unbroken expanses of beauty exist? Smooth tree bark, ancient rock faces, newly fallen snow, a fresh sheet of paper.  We like to dig in to prove we’ve been here.

I like to walk with faraway eyes, and let the symbols swarm past me.

the cop-out

time heals all wounds, they say
but some scars grow with us
like etched initials
in the smooth bark
of an old beech tree

inscrutable, thick,
distorted remnants
of past wrongs
carved in our hearts
hardened into false submission.

the pain is eternal
and simply a part of us.

time heals all wounds, someday
but only because
those who are marred
and all who bore witness
will be lost

time heals all wounds, they say
but that’s a total fucking cop-out