On the first slope leading down toward the valley
is a limestone outcropping that marks a place I call Jerusalem.
The rocks warm here in the red dirt, seeming to draw the sun away from the surrounding hillsides.
In every direction, the prairie rolls on gently with the valley forest cutting a swath through its center.
Jerusalem, as I have deemed it, feels mysterious at the edge of the woods,
where travelers either emerge from the shadows or head directly into them.
This is a place where the ground feels alive — where miracles happen.
If the Spirit was poured out on these fields, it would be here,
On hills like the promised land,
Dry ground where travelers stand and see the walls of the ancient city first come into view.
The coyotes sing here at night over everything that is alive,
and it feels at that early morning hour like Jesus’ hour of doubt in the garden.
The animals and all of nature offer their sacrifices and hidden treasures
To this land from which life bursts forth,
where the Holy Spirit rises on the whim of the winds.