“My Near Horizon.”

I started this one three weeks ago, and just finished it tonight. I hope you like it!


My Near Horizon

The robin sky can still inflate my soul,

Collecting all the pent-up, aching energies

From every noisome night I roll around alone,

And focusing the deadened disciplines

Of one more round upon the chin-up bar,

Of swimming through a tidal bore of lies

To find the embers of the camp-fire Truth

With bits of broiled fish just lying there.

I’m not sure where I get the aimless angst

That yearns for pleasure’s rolling hills and vales,

That turns a smile into a gracious nod,

A nod into the fiery orbit of the dance.

 

I’m glad I’m here. I’ve made it just this far,

So…where am I? I see the golden, toasted crescent moon

Obscuring every star that’s near its light.

I hear the calls of geese and mating crows,

And see the stalking ire of cats in spring.

I don’t know my location, but my speed

Is like the blue electron zipping through

Each full-moon orbit, like a charioteer

Engulfed in fear because his car’s in flames.

 

I joined the circus sixteen months ago,

And I’m still learning everything I can about

The flips and tricks to stay on the trapeze,

And how to make the elephants sit down.

I never see old Barnum’s withered face, but I hear

His hoarse and yodeled shouts. They entertain,

But do they edify? I mean…what’s solid anymore?

My near horizon shines, inviting blue,

But here beneath the big white tent, it’s dark,

Or only lit by lanterns (when they’re lit,

And ice-storms don’t play havoc with the power).

The vendors’ cries, and solemn animal howls,

Still turn me from my stately drudgery,

Entrancing me with lures of opulence,

Like vegetables upon a golden skewer

Or brass knuckles hid by soothing silver gleams.

 

I turn away, and closed my wearied, calloused ear

To all the shadowed cries of penury and want,

To blustered threats of fire and flood and war.

Sometimes, the sunset flaring through the trees

Restores my pensive joy in all its pacing moods.

The sun will send my aching back a soothing pulse

That can correct my spine like archer’s bow.

It doesn’t matter if the elephants sit down;

I’m still the blue electron, but I feel

The nearness of my azure destiny.

It sits and waits below Orion’s belt,

And bids me on, beyond the furthest moon.

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