Beyond Even This
Who would have thought the afterlife would look so much like Ohio? A small town place, thickly settled among deciduous trees. I lived for what seemed a very short time. Several things did not work out. Casually almost, I became another one of the departed, but I had never imagined the tunnel of hot wind that pulls the newly dead into the dry Midwest and plants us like corn. I am not alone, but I am restless. There is such sorrow in these geese flying over, trying to find a place to land in the miles and miles of parking lots that once were soft wetlands. They seem as puzzled as I am about where to be. Often they glide, in what I guess is a consultation with each other, getting their bearings, as I do when I stare out my window and count up what I see. It's not much really: one buckeye tree, three white frame houses, one evergreen, five piles of yellow leaves. This is not enough for any heaven I had dreamed, but I am taking the long view. There must be a backcountry of the beyond, beyond even this and farther out, past the dark smoky city on the shore of Lake Erie, through the landlocked passages to the Great Sweetwater Seas.