A Labyrinth Memorial

The miracle is not to walk on water.
The miracle is to walk on the green earth,
dwelling deeply in the present moment
and feeling truly alive.
– Thich Nhat Hanh

In the summer of 2014, I was in Israel writing a book about my walk on the Camino de Santiago in Spain the previous fall. In the midst of writing, a conflict broke out with Gaza and escalated throughout my stay, the number of victims rising on both sides. The house where I was staying for one month had a lovely view of the northern reaches of Israel, and across the border into Lebanon; it also had a garden with fruit trees, flowers, herbs – and a large but empty patch of untilled earth.

Each day, as the news worsened, I would find myself gazing upon that bit of ground – an idea germinating in my mind that even I wasn’t conscious of. I simply felt compelled to act. One day, I began to collect stones on my daily walks. Then, before I knew it, I’d sketched out a rough idea of a rectangular labyrinth, and began taking measurements in the ground. It wasn’t long before a labyrinth came to life, and what once were stones became, almost overnight, the guardians of history…


When I saw your labyrinth I was surprised a happy surprise.
I loved it.
I loved the fact that you included the names of the soldiers under rocks.
I thought that maybe, maybe I’ll use it
But I did not know really how to
Which is mainly an excuse.
Before pergola arbors that we thought we should use the sukkah, that came to my brother’s grandchildren
And it really bothered me.
Ultimately did not matter anything with it
And I am happy at the sight of my garden labyrinth.

~ Nurit S., Israel


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