The Georgetown Cemetery is a ghostly but tranquil place at dusk. Two cypress trees, brought from New Orleans by a packet captain, stand sentry at what was once the formal entrance. My grandmother and grandfather, and many other ancestors, rest in peace there.
Stand quietly for awhile, high on the hill, above the markers for Thomas Stevenson Calhoon and his wife. Georgetown lay glittering like a jewel beneath them. Below is the ferry road and the old steamboat landing that years ago buzzed with the trade of packets and showboats. Now, only diesel driven tug boats pushing coal, oil, and other commodities up and down the river pass by. A sad song for the once proud rivertown.
As the sun sets, the graves seem to merge into one long field of silvery stones – counters of the play of time from one generation to the next. The engraved stones mark stories of lives long and short, full and not so full. Some mark the lives of steamboat captains and pilots. Their stories are eternal – romantic stories of enduring mystery and yet oddly heroic.
And when the dark of night does come, the Georgetown Cemetery is a deeply quiet place.
Copyright 2009 © Francis W Nash
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