To the Mountains
BY RYAN MOUNT
When we were six
I moved in next door.
You and your family baked my family brownies
And we instantly became friends
When we were seven
You invited me to your birthday party
But no one came
Except for me.
When we were ten
We were the best of friends.
We would run around the yard
Playing army all day long
Not giving a care in the world.
When we were twelve
We climbed the mountain
On the out skirts of town
And at the summit, you stared
At the ever expanding beauty
Of the twinkling foliage and setting sun.
That evening you asked me something.
“Do you believe in God?”
“Yes,” I replied.
“Cool, because I think he is an artist.
He has painted life’s picture for us
To let us know
That we will always be with each other
No matter what.”
I remember you saying that last part
With extra emphasis.
When we were eighteen,
You convinced me to join the army.
Fight for our country,
To preserve the freedoms and rights
Of our loved ones,
And the citizens of the United States.
When we were nineteen
I was holding you in my arms.
There was blood all over your skin.
You were having trouble breathing.
You looked right up into my eyes
As a single tear rolled down your gritty face
With your last dying breath you said,
“Take me to the mountain.”