January 27, 2013

ask me

some time when the river is ice ask me
mistakes I have made. ask me whether
what I have done is my life. others
have come in their slow way into
my thought, and some have tried to help
or to hurt: ask me what difference
their strongest love or hate has made.

I will listen to what you say.
you and I can turn and look
at the silent river and wait. we know
the current is there, hidden; and there
are comings and goings from miles away
that hold the stillness exactly before us.
what the river says, that is what I say.

-- william stafford

five years

last year I began keeping a five year journal. with the exception of a lost period in december, I have kept it up. (and that blank, lost period in december speaks of my life in a different way). so for these past 26 days, I have been running against the ghost of my last year self. it's novel, fascinating, and oftentimes sad. on this day last year, I worked from home (presumably on galileo) and then spent the evening at the barn, 'lazily lungeing cookie.' I was nursing a possibly-broken nose from my terrifying ride. I was carrying around a heart-shaped rock in my pocket, a gift from g. I used to sleep with it in my hand, a talisman of hope; I used to zip it into my vest pocket when I got on my horse, for luck. sometimes I still slip it into my coat pocket; it fits so perfectly in my hand. it's hard to run parallel to my last-year self, and illuminating, and comforting, and strange. I just keep marking down the days, a small act of faith that things will get better, that there is good in what's to come.

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