Mountain Peaks

Sitting on top of a mountain quenching my thirst
from the long hike behind us,
I look back down the slope that we climbed.
When you and I first reached the base of the incline,
gazing at the top as we filled our canteens from a spring,
we though the climb would be easy
and we charged it with adrenalin pumping in our veins.
But when we reached the top,
a whole other mountain towered above us.
We took the setback lightheartedly and set off again
with the top in sight, overcoming the awkward stones
that pummeled the bottoms of our feet
as we slipped on moss and loose topsoil.
We used the trees to help pull ourselves up the mountain
and the occasional whip of a branch across our cheeks
only made us strive harder to conquer the task.
And when we reached that peak sweaty and short of breath
only to find another ridge awaiting our assault,
we cried and then we laughed, drank from our canteens
and ate our lunch, and started all over again.
But now, after countless other peaks,
and having reached the last one,
I can only look back at where we have come from.
I still cannot turn and gaze at what rests
on the other side of the mountain
that you and I have worked so hard to climb.
I only drink from my almost empty canteen
as I sit on a boulder and wipe the sweat from my face
and talk with you about my fear of the long hike down.
Afterall, once you’ve reached the top,
down is the only way left to go.
I guess I’m really just afraid
of having to climb another mountain.

©1992, 21012 Gentry Avenue Productions. All Rights Reserved.

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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Fergiemoto

    You have described one of my hikes almost perfectly.
    Nicely done!

    1. George Mahn III

      While hiking up the flat irons in Boulder one year I spotted a few climbers in the distance who traversed the peak and rappelled down the other side. Nuts!

  2. In Blue

    exquisite, yes….takes us there…

  3. Deb

    The thought of going back is not as easy as one would think, especially with an empty canteen. It is good to know that in life there is always another mountain to climb, lest we decide to go back.
    I really have enjoyed reading this…got me thinking a some life situations as well…thank you, George!
    Hugs, xx

    1. George Mahn III

      I agree completely. Some mountains are easier to climb than others but what fun would life be without a few good challenges now and then, right??
      Glad you enjoyed it, Deb!

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