Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

Feet to Zion

June 13th, 2011 by G.

On the sweetness of Mormon life

The sky is smoke. Red sun at morning, red sun at setting. The Stake planned this youth pioneer trek in remote western New Mexico without planning on Arizona burning down.

The same wind that blows the smoke blows the dust. It blows in eyes, onto straw hats and bonnets, in and through the handcarts. But enough dust remains on the ground to drag down your wheels on the steep slopes of the cedar-covered hills.

At night the bonneted and suspendered youth dance in a wash to Gangstas Paradise before doing a square dance.

Your legs are sore and your hands are raw. You apply chapstick religiously.

A woman in full pioneer dress invites you to join the Jacob Hamblin Facebook group.

You belong to the self-proclaimed orphans’ cart. You are proud–your handcart ‘family’ is proud–of being scraped together from the odds and ends of other carts, having the fewest members of any cart, and having the youngest average members too. Y’all outsing, outpush, and outboast.

You already know some of the youth of your cart. Somehow, dressed all alike and playing a role, they are more distinctly themselves than you have known them before. You struggle to not let them move you too outwardly.

Absurdly, your mind keeps turning to poetry.

Handcarts on high hills.
Pines and greening oaks. Dust blows.
Trek. We push, we sing.

Comments (4)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , ,
June 13th, 2011 11:20:12
4 comments

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Johnna
June 14, 2011

All those real details are better than fiction. Thanks.


Ken
June 15, 2011

For some must push and some must pull, as we go marching up the hill, for merrily on the way we go, until we reach the

VALLEY, HO!

(Sorry; couldn’t resist …)


Camilla G.
August 8, 2012

Though not usually a proponate of conformity, I have observed that conformity can reveal individuality at times. I speculate that similar clothing and similar purposes hinders the natural human urge to catalog each other. I would think it is worth the dust if youth experience each other as Latter-day Saints and individuals, instead of as the popular kid, the geek, the troublemaker, or whatever label they slap on themselves.

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