When we visited the Old Burying Ground in Beaufort, NC, it was the first time that it felt like fall during that week at the beach. We went later than usual--the last week in September--and it was confusingly warm on the fringes of Hurricane Maria and felt like summer was back for a stint.
Green acorns scatter upon the confetti of burnt sienna leaves, themselves laying randomly-cast upon a tight bed of white sand. The air was crisp, not buggy and moist like I remember it from years past.
The colorful unmarked grave of a young girl who was buried in a rum cask at sea was coated in her usual array of toys and shells, though this year, an unopened package of eclipse glasses appeared as an additional offering for her enjoyment. I imagined her ghostly figure appearing at night to innocently explore and tinker with the assortment of stuffed animals, bouncy balls, and freshly-harvested whelk shells.
But the wonder of the graveyard lay not only in its age--with makeshift markers beyond legibility--but in the towering and twisted live oaks that have no-doubt been feeding on the salt-water-logged flesh and bone of our dearly departed beloved.