They started us out small. Looking back, it seems like a waste of time. I think it was only to get us to think we liked it. And we did. It wasn’t until later that we started lugging rocks to the tops of hills. They tricked us. Years of promises made us feel like we were on our way to moving mountains. They didn’t let us see it when they trucked the rocks back down so we had more to carry.
By now we have recognized what they are doing. The boulders we move roll back down before our eyes, and we go along with it. We all have different plans to play their game the best; there is more to it than getting the biggest boulder the farthest up the steepest hill before it comes down. Some say it doesn’t matter how big of a boulder you move; all they look for is how far you go. Others say that just working on the steepest hill will get their attention.
They still tell us that if we spend our time moving rocks, some day we will be able to move mountains, and maybe they are right. But the mountains will roll back down too. I guess that’s good; if they stayed put, we would have nothing left to do. Moving mountains is all we know how to do, all we have ever learned. We will never climb the mountains. We don’t know we can.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.