Were you told there would be gold?
The wind was relentless as the cruel sun burned Your back bent to task each mountain pass turned Were you told there'd be riches like silver and gold?
Enough to live free and be wealthy, if bold? When you packed your old Jenny with all she could carry
And led her through crags over long arid valley Did that burro take heed of your actions and word? Or was cougar and rattlesnake all that she heard? The East turned to myth, it's troubles behind Ahead the trails empty of all which is kind The soil was salty, much harder than stone Embittered toil you searched all on your own Did a night come bearing hunger and despair When you ate your old Jenny, hide hoof and hair? The land was littered with mine shafts dug deep But treasures were not meant forever to keep Of all the holes dug only those which remain Are the graves of the souls who desperately came
- words and photos Edmond Deraedt 2020