“and you are both specks on the horizon’s edge.”

by Bry LeBerthon


“Toward the Horizon”

Fiction Based on a True Look at Life’s Horizon

by Leanna Glenn Markham


This journal entry is inspired by true events. Some of the characters, names, businesses, incidents, and certain locations and events have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes. Any similarity to the name, character, or history of any person is entirely coincidental and unintentional.

Trigger Warning: our program often motivates people to discuss their trauma. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, please, take a step back to address emotional flashbacks and trauma before continuing to push yourself. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or the National Suicide Hotline at (1-800) 273-8255.


For me to be on horizon’s edge
Means either I take the wings of the dawn,
or someone else sees me from the far side.

Is the horizon attainment?
Reaching the edge of the world
aboard life’s Dawn Treader,
with courage…and little else?

Or is it diminishment—
the fading out of sight
and in some sense into

I can’t quite go with either.
Can I?
Something more lies beyond.

When Gandalf and Frodo
set sail with the Elves,
they went in company,
not just away from their
known lives but toward
something beating in their souls,
something that said rest
without boredom,
effervescent life without
perpetual strain.
They claimed they were tired,
yet they weren’t so drained
as to need dragging
into the next life.
Something awaited them.

I have heard two family
members quoted by
other relatives
saying they were tired
Near the end of life.
the two tired ones, brothers,
held in life a sense of purpose,
poured out love on family,
and viewing the horizon
from this shore,
did not fear.
did not run forward,
but did not shrink back either.

I spoke a long time
with an uncle last night.
He just lost a brother,
the last living one
out of six he had.
We talked of his own health,
his brother,
his new house,
his neighbors,
how the timing of his purchase
somehow prevented him
living amidst a Covid outbreak
on his old street.
At eighty six, he reads,
he walks,
he helps his neighbor with
things around her place
that she cannot do.
He loves talking with people,
and talking with people
about the Love of God.
He lived a long time
unaware of it.
Now he wants to
share the wealth.

Still, surrounded by
people who care
about him,
he doesn’t see slipping
off into the horizon
as a fearful thing.
So while he grieves
his brother,
he doesn’t begrudge
his departure.

I wonder whether
we really have
the welcoming party
that some speak of.
Those who have crossed over—-
or almost—
speak of those meeting
them in the place of
palpable peace, of
delicious light.
Are they the ones
seeing us as
specks on the horizon.
drawing ever closer?
Do they await
like those at airports,
with signs and banners,
shouts and excitement?
Do they plan 
Welcome Home parties?

I may not know on this side.
Sometimes I venture to ask,
but I’m not sure I want
anyone to answer.
Instead, I sail today’s route,
hoping to stay on course.
Trusting the divine navigation
to guide me back if I’m off,
ahead if I’m on.

I’m looking ahead, but
not so far ahead
that I forget
the blue waters around me
and the starry skies above.

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