Peering through
a telescopic
shadows get lost in the dark,
long nights mistake minutes for hours,
and dark sky’s lasso of stars
falls around the shoulders—
one’s constellation of life—
to tighten and foreshorten
within reach

turning thoughts into
overlapping lenses—
Venn diagram—
the was
the am.

A younger voice says,
Who are you?
An older voice says,
Parent to the child I was.
Why are you here?
             To understand.
             To forgive.
I don’t need your forgiveness.

              I do.
Don’t worry what’s to become of me.
The older voice is barely heard:
             I’m what becomes of you.

Younger self on one side,
elder self on another,
sharing life’s trip,
a Möbius strip,
surprised to find each other
in a reconciling loop,
a puzzling continuity
of belonging.

The younger self
nods to the elder
(less a stranger, now).
The elder sees
with compassion
its remembered self.


May we one day
sit with our memories,
finally undefensive.

Humble to our youth,
humble to our aging.

Recalling each one’s beauty
that distracted
or misled.

A circling of two dancers,
eyes locked on one another,
wondering who will lead.

The minute hand says hurry,
the hour hands say no,
each one circling
in perpetual, complementary

Hands together
and apart,
and apart,
a swimmer’s hands
stroking to stay afloat.


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