An Uncommon Prayer about A Common Place

I thank you for these bricks. Lord, it has held me while I walked back and forth. I and many others have paced over these bricks in thoughts too deep for words. We stood upon this brick for weddings and graduations. Grandmas, grandpas, and uncles, and aunts were taken from here to eternity over these bricks. Life has been lived and died in and over these bricks. I am grateful for these bricks. They do what I cannot seem to do, testify in rain and shine or wind and hail to the permanent impermanence of the life you call us to lead. For the obvious path beneath my feet, I am forever grateful.


Richard Bryant

Everything I Need To Know About Ocracoke I Learned On Howard Street

Slow down.

Speak to everyone, especially young people and dogs.

Eventually, someone will bring you a cake, a fish, shrimp, or deer. Stay hungry for life.

Walking through cemeteries can teach you how to talk to the living.

Living next to a graveyard helps you to stay in touch with your mortality by reminding you to live fully.

There are always forks in the road.

When you’re lost, someone will come along and tell you where you are.

You should ask a neighbor for help. Islands are isolated but people don’t have to be. Connect with the others around you.

A small light can brighten the darkest places.

Community has a distinctive sound. When all else fails, listen – someone will be singing or playing your way home.

Look out for golf carts and look both ways before you cross the street.

We are custodians of the island. We pass everything on to someone else.

Richard Bryant