I came across this picture in my files of an old stone house we came across in Lucerne Valley, California. I was inspired by it to write the following prose.
Trekking through the sage and scrub we happen upon walls of stone.
A hearth which once held the warmth of kinship now holds only ashes heated by the relentless sun.
Long gone are the hands that toiled and labored to form this humble dwelling.
Blood and sweat are no longer evident in the mortar that refuses to give up its hold.
Only an empty shell sits in silent testimony to the lives it once sheltered.
Wind whistling through empty rooms is the only sound our conscious mind can hear.
We pause and listen with our hearts,
only then can we perceive the faint sounds of laughter which once must have echoed here.
A broken doll cast aside on the sandy floor,
her button eyes reflect a look of longing for a long-gone playmate.
Shards of glass bespeak a time when a cup was raised in a toast to life.
Ragged remnants of lace flutter at the blankly staring windows,
a contradictory statement to these harsh surroundings.
Rust now blankets an iron bed,
once the place to rest a weary body,
Mutely we hear the sighs of a lover and the joyous tears of childbirth.
Now, as the desert reclaims what is hers,
only vestiges of those who dwelled within these walls remains ....
Soon all will return to the greedy arms of the land which once cradled them.
© LauraA 1999-2006