• Exile, A Condition of Stillness


    A condition of stillness pursues you,
    wherever you find your exile, at sea
    or in any exploration. You will be there.
    It is your image on the mirror: an old
    longing for the simplicity long lost
    in the shuffle of life, loves, and losses.
    Every wave that beats on the ballast
    asks: Are you happy at last? Will this
    outlast the lingering left-over dread?
    Out there where waves break at the edge
    of the firmament of quiet stars on stars
    you can see through moving darkness.
    Where have all the pains remained?
    On what shores did you neglect to load
    them, overstaying albatross of gloom?
    Your heart leaps with the bobbing bow
    and stern, and you whisper a prayer
    drowned quickly by the sea. You laugh.
    They cannot haunt you anymore than
    dead memories can bear you down.
    You have built a mansion of dreams.
    You have been here before, haven’t you?
    Exploring the depths of what happiness
    you could grab, you will hold them.

    You will never let them slip away; you
    have earned them. In this brief exile
    on the sea, would you hold on to this
    sudden grace of simple stillness?
    Will this still simplicity pursue you
    wherever you roam? Come home then.


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