Channeling Hannibal in Carthage, Tunisia

I carry with me the weight of expectation. And I came to Carthage to witness the earth salted by Rome, these 2,200 years gone by.

That birthplace of Hamilcar and his two sons, Hannibal and Hasdrubal, who would defy the power of Rome and have the world’s greatest empire quivering behind its defensive walls. Armed with elephants and righteous revenge, the brothers terrorized the Iberian peninsula for 15 summers but never dealt the deathblow and were forced to retreat in defense of their homeland.

Standing on the hills of Carthage, I looked north across the Mediterranean in anticipation of Scipio Africanus and his legions, come to end this empire and advance another. An epic drama and the subject of countless books, movies, and military training exercises.

I waited on that ruined ground, marveling that green plants would dare to grow.