Rudder

 

val-vesa-436400-unsplash
Photo by Val Vesa on Unsplash

As if I hadn’t walked this path
thousands of times before,
I walked slowly from tree to aging tree,
crunching through their brilliant fallen leaves.
Rounding a corner, the boat-dotted sea
rolled towards an undisclosed horizon.

As if I, too, might not know what lay ahead,
I found myself, for once,
standing down from the helm,
sailed by a mounting wind,
waved through the branching shadows,
no hand to stay the heart’s rudder.

As if there are paths within a path,
many journeys, but only one destination,
my feet rose and fell on their own. Begin here,
where the current is strongest, my heart said.
And I strode through that tide of colour,
all the world new again, and I, young.

Another (older) poem from my chapbook “Stealing Eternity”.

 

Your Turn

Photo by Tim Golder on Unsplash

She was lost and late and frantic
when she pulled over to ask me
for directions. And so close!
A block the other way lay her destination.
Discouraged, she had turned off too soon.

Sometimes it happens that way.
And sometimes the road simply ends
and you know you’ve missed
the turn. But when it’s late
in life, and it’s your turn that
you’ve avoided or can’t find,
when it’s your appointment
with fate you think you’ve missed,
or when the path you’re on turns
out to really be someone else’s, say,
who lives there, in that neighbourhood,
who could help you?

None better than the yardless dog
at your heels, growing wilder,
more wolflike by the second,
those nips of dissatisfaction
ripping your good pants,
the barks of disapproval
stilling the nice hand
that would have fed it,
the sickening plunge of your stomach
as you realize this is all wrong,
making you run now, run for the life
you meant to live.

This too first appeared in North Shore Magazine.