Muriel grew up being taught that staying put and letting the seasons visit was the way it was meant to be. She had never been more than twenty miles from the home she was born in, and she liked it that way. There were times the summer seemed too short and the winter seemed too long, but she knew and accepted Mother Nature’s way.
A stranger wandered into town one February. Swaddled in layers, only an oval of skin and his eyes were visible the day Muriel saw him as she stepped out of the town’s general store. His skin was red and leathery-looking. His eyes were sea green with flecks of emerald and more alive than anything Muriel had seen in a long time. Their eyes locked and he smiled first and nodded. She gave a quick smile and nod then hurried home; yet the strangers eyes and their burning light remained with her.
A few days later Muriel went to the store again and saw the stranger there, chair pushed close to the pot-bellied stove. His many layers nowhere in sight, she saw he had a sparse frame that probably had sinewy strength she thought. He was laughing and chewing the fat with the old-timers.
As she shopped she heard Jax (she’d heard Ol’ Bill call him that) tell of his travels. He did it all on foot and most times lived off the land. He said, “Ain’t no mountain high enough, ain’t no valley low enough, ain’t no river wide enough to keep me from living free on the road.”
She heard Jax say he was leaving in two days as he had to reach the mountain pass before it snowed over. Against reason, against all that told her to stay put, Muriel walked over to the fire and Jax and said, “Take me with you.” Jax looked up and into her face and grokked it for several breath’s time.
Paula Light is the host of Thursday Inspiration. Paula says:
This week’s theme is mountain and the picture is [above.] Here is the song snippet from “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” recorded by Diana Ross in 1970:
Ain’t no mountain high enough
Ain’t no valley low enough
Ain’t no river wild enough
To keep me from you
Does anyone realize that Prince used “textspeech” way before anybody else?