Tuesday, July 19, 2011

With the therapist this last weekend

                 July Night on the Tallulah

Twilight timidly exits the confined valley,
Never sure if it's part of dusk or night.
An ascending cacophony of cicadas
Announce the arrival of the ever-confident night.
         But the Tallulah ignores them  both
         As it cuts its course down to the Tugaloo.
Irregular boulders of quartz and granite,
         spastically positioned by some ancient
Attempt to thwart the river so as to stumble
        in its relentless way.
But the river chortles as it washes by them.
       (Even at the dams, it heartily laughs...)

The hatcheted trunks of the old hemlocks
And the blossoms of the mountain laurel
Are cast in a subdued manner
By the flickering orange glow
       of the small campfire.
Seated, somewhat away from the fire,
Is a lone man of middle years
       who ponders and remembers.
The night, ever self-absorbed,
Attempts to muscle its way
       into the light of the campfire.
The bearded man notices and grunts
As he gets up to add deliberately
             more varied sticks to the fire.

The hyper-active river never seems to tire
       in its relentless journey,
In contrast to the lightly gray-haired man
                    Whose shoulders are slumped.
As a smile uncertainly sneaks
              onto his bearded face,
The constellations peek through the canopy
Of eastern whites, red oaks, and hemlocks
              at the man near the fire.

The lone man wonders about events in his life
        And how all would be changed
If he had made different choices.
            No...He would not be here now
        Listening to the whippoorwill
        across the narrow and tree-skirted river-
Always single-minded in its quest.

Every choice has a consequence,
             an outcome or direction.
So, the question  is set before the man
                       by the River,
"Will you be single-minded as I,
Or will you become duplicitous
          as the night and day, ever changing?"

Startled, the lone man frowns reflectively
                 at the question
While the parasitic fire endeavors
                 to entrance him.
The choice is as always:  Thinking of Home...

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