after a while

a poem by Veronica A. Shoffstall.

After a while you learn
The subtle difference between
Holding a hand and chaining a soul
And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning
And company doesn’t always mean security.

And you begin to learn
That kisses aren’t contracts
And presents aren’t promises
And you begin to accept your defeats
With your head up and your eyes ahead
With the grace of a woman
Not the grief of a child
And you learn
To build all your roads on today
Because tomorrow’s ground is
Too uncertain for plans
And futures have a way
Of falling down in mid flight
After a while you learn
That even sunshine burns if you get too much
So you plant your own garden
And decorate your own soul
Instead of waiting
For someone to bring you flowers
And you learn
That you really can endure
That you are really strong
And you really do have worth
And you learn and you learn
With every good bye you learn.

I was talking to an old friend the other day, and we were just talking about summer plans, things to do, people to see and the very vague, building up of excitement that summer brings. the tantalizing promise of sweet, unadulterated joy ensconced in the laziness of having absolutely nothing to do all day. nothing but to lay in the sun and bask in the warmth of summer love… but whilst we were talking about summer, we inevitably started talking about the places we were going to.

and we both arrived at a simple conclusion (alright, so that was a little oxymoronic. nothing in life is ever really simple, is it?) home is the goal. after all, in everything we do, aren’t we all just trying to find a place to call home? and he worded it so beautifully too, with some of the nicest imagery i’d ever read since Yukio Mishima’s sumptuous imagery in The Sailor.

 “… i don’t know that there’s anywhere else that he’d rather be right now. It seems like wherever he is he knows he’s at home… i’m thinking eventually i want to find that spot where my cat is, wherever that might be… if it’s even a place…”

and isn’t that the dream? but for now, i suppose… like Yukio Mishima says, “i still have no way to survive but to keep writing one line, one more line, one more line…”


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