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The Slumbering Path

The journey had been long and hard — longer than anyone thought it could be, and every bit as hard as they said.

But no one told Paul how much beauty he would find along the path.

They thought he wouldn’t notice the bright flowers.

They assumed he wouldn’t make it to the open meadow to frolic with deer and bask in the friendly sunshine.

His ears weren’t sophisticated enough to appreciate the sweet music of birds, his palate not discerning enough to thrill with every swallow of honey.

But Paul delighted in each wonder and couldn’t wait to find out what was next.

More than anything , Paul reveled in the company of his fellow travelers, and the more of them he met, the more there seemed to be. Together they talked, danced, sang — so many wonderful songs!

But now Paul found himself at a fork in the road.

To the left was more adventure, more new folks to meet.

To the right was a peaceful path, with benches and hammocks where he could rest. And he heard birds singing, glimpsed old friends he hadn’t seen in forever.

And, way off in the distance, the sun waited for him, warm and welcoming.

Paul was very tired, and so he turned to the right. He stopped at the first hammock, stretched out between two oak trees, and pulled off his boots.

He giggled when he saw his big toe poking through his sock. It was worn out, too!

As Paul drifted off to sleep, he felt someone draw near to him. She began to sing his favorite song …

“One glad morning, when this life is over … I’ll fly away.”

Mary’s voice was strong and true as she squeezed her sweet baby’s hand and watched the heart monitor fade to a peaceful stop.

Published inFlash Fiction

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