I am the path you walk. . . seldom noticed, never thanked. It is no accident when I am smooth – it takes years, centuries, millennia even, to achieve that kind of grace – the grace that would allow you to traverse your life without a stumble, the very ease of breathing in your footsteps.
Nor is it an accident when the way is arduous – making you lean into each step with efforts unknown. Then you notice. Then do you curse rather than bless. Your kind do not seem to appreciate the craft, the skill, the design, with which I was made.
You are like hunters, always with your eyes cast forward, seeking, always seeking. I often wonder what it is you seek. I often think what you seek is right under you, waiting to simply be noticed.
I am not your future. I am the ever-present present, the culmination of who have come before, for you are not the first to travel in my way. Every step taken, every hesitation, every pause, every racing stomp, is impressed upon me. Every deer, every bear, every ant, every child, stands upon the space you occupy, even if only for an instant.
They have all changed me, as you change me now. And I am left always to wonder whether I have changed you.