Born to the wind and the wildish waves,
trapped in a river valley,
my soul lifts up to trace
great flapping circles across the sky,
grey, mist-trailing clouds, flowing out behind me,
gauzy veiled mystification, obscuring sight,
like woolly scarves along the mountaintops,
like stunted wings.
I touch down in my spirit place:
mossy banks and old growth,
the sacred silence enveloping me
in the everness of time,
then soar back to my body,
replenished, but land-fettered,
Somewhere along the way,
one's questing self catches up
to the soul's journey,
integrates the all-that-was
into the being-here-now,
the looking ahead, finite and already scripted,
measured against the pressing beat
of time's accelerated passage.
The treacherous pilgrimage across
the perilous mountain passes of the heart,
the bloody-footed stumbling up rocky ledges,
the sliding down,
the impetuous struggle of surviving,
the constant rising up and beginning again,
has morphed into this kinder, slower,
more benign acceptance
of What Is.
Life is already done.
Now is the summing up, the reconciling
of the dreams, met and unmet,
the telling of the story
that is creating its own slow ending.
After struggle, after enduring,
after all the Keeping On,
I find myself in the turret
of my being,
calm and still,
gazing down and across
my own peaceable kingdom.
*I borrowed the phrase "peaceable kingdom" from the closing lines of the fantastic poem Getting There by David Wagoner: "your own unpeaceable kingdom". Altered, since mine is peaceable. Whether from inner peace or sheer exhaustion has yet to be determined, LOL.