A Lesson From a Tombstone: Part Three
Finally, the more serious questions—the human questions—made their way up the levee and displaced the silty ones, distilling truths in my mind like the clear waters of Lake Tahoe.
Who was this unknown man?
Was he a prospector, a cowboy, or an outlaw?
Where was he from?
Were his parents living and looking for him at the time of his misfortune?
Did he have children?
Did he have siblings?
Had he ever been married?
Did those people who loved him ever know what happened to him?
What was the nature of his spiritual condition?
These were queries of identity, questions about his humanity.
As they continued to rise, my heart began to sink under the weight of the words etched on the weathered slab of rock planted in the middle of the desolate field of forgotten memorials.
Whoever the unfortunate man was, his life ended, tragically, in a dirty mining town in the middle of a sweltering Nevada desert—and no one even knew what name to put on his tombstone.
[This is the third post in a series of segments. Read part four here. Want to get posts like this in your inbox? Subscribe Here.]
About Scott Postma
Scott lives in North Idaho collecting more books than he'll ever read in a lifetime. He helps people cultivate their capacity to perceive and appreciate the good, the true, and the beautiful by sharing rich insights into the arts and humanities, meaningful perspective on faith and culture, and valuable tips on writing and teaching. You can subscribe to the tribe and follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus.