When a refrain becomes a din flooding the eternal internal monologue with variations of “What have I accomplished?” That is when you know the looking-back-on-my-life process has officially begun.
A puff of smoke, and then a crack. If you’ll step this way, just over here, I’ll tell you secrets that everyone knows.
How charming now to see my past reprised
in the eyes of young artists learning to prioritize their sacred values,
shallow and noble, local and global, trying to find the golden balance
between art and commerce.
They’re presently discovering what I spent some years working through in reverse: The falling off the beam is why we walk.
Old souls are wise
according to the received wisdom of all of us who feel somehow less asleep
than we were before. I don’t know. Where am I truly on the Awake scale?
Knowing that it doesn’t matter and that none of us will ever understand is a start,
a commencement to the end of narcoleptic bouts of mental sepsis.
So why the yearning? The worrying? Nothing is an immensity too infinite to contemplate.
My wife reminded me that she isn’t needed.
She’s wanted. But no one is really needed, she said, except to herself.
One day she might agree that everyone is really needed to compose the grand tapestry.
Few are wanted. All must participate.
That, I’ve conclusively concluded, is our collective human fate.