We drove towards the trees of eastern Texas, stopping at Boston for McDonalds. Then, my husband drove across the border and found the little road that led up and over, straight ahead and around a corner, to Arden Cemetery, in Arden, Arkansas. Most of the people in Arden were the dead ones.
The cemetery sat around the area where his dad had run around with his eight siblings, all barefoot, all poor, destined to run away or die, or live until they were 90. We stomped around the mounds, peering at names, subtracting dates for age, noting the veterans, until we found them clustered to the front side. The judge, his wife, their children. My husband pointed down, explaining family relationship to our son who came from them. If they had not lived, we would not have existed to stop.
Our little snap of time in the reality of lineage and common folks quickly ended, and we left, driving towards our own time-slip existence, a bit more aware, yet always in the fog of really knowing or remembering.
We drove upwards into Arkansas, going through Paris. We went by a trailer house with a shack in front of it. Big black spraypainted letters announced: "Sorry I'm too poor to be a Republican." Oh you funny hillbillies. Goodbye. I'm leaving with a smile to my own existence, my own slip in time, thank you for a moment. Best wishes with yours. I hope you have a dog beside you in your easy chair. I hope you benefit from Obamacare.
Then, we finally found Clarksville. We found the university for a visit. We found the center for our visit tomorrow. I laughed at the irony of the words blazed across the center's doorway: Center for Special Learning. Special is the word detested most by my son.
It's almost bedtime in the hotel, which those in the cemetery do not have to worry about. Our lives rush on, and we must clink forwards into our own meaning, engrave our own time between, believe we have futures always ahead. This is life. We have a road to follow and a hope to breeze ahead of us.
So, thank you, Arkansas, for your straight and windy roads today. Many views for many thoughts as life moves on.