On Sunday last, I went over to Union church for summer worship. Beforehand, folks were milling about, greeting friends and neighbors. I wandered into the churchyard to check out some of the older memorials. I could see some folks at the front of the church, so I knew I still had a little bit of time before we were called in.
I heard a man softly calling "Annie! Little Annie! Where are you?" in a kind of singsong voice. I looked up to see a little girl coming toward me. She carried a small, raggedy doll and was looking behind her as she came along. As she ran toward me her curls covered her eyes and she tripped and fell at my feet, dropping her dolly. I could hear the man calling "Annie, where is my Little Annie?" As she got up, I handed her the doll. Then she turned and went back the way she came. She had a quiet, lilting giggle that stayed with me after she was gone.
The church bell began to ring and I started back. I was looking around for Annie and her dad but I caught the toe of my shoe on what felt like a rock. I went down to my knee. It was a rock I stumbled on, it was this rock.