First off, I’m not a poet. I never been a fan of poetry really. (Though a couple of down-to-earth teachers opened my mind to its possibilities in the past few years.) But tonight I was walking with the dogs — more on that at a later date — and I felt like trying to put into words what I was feeling. Walking at night is such a unique experience. If there are any poets out there, please don’t throw stones at me. I’m a work in progress.
You leave the warm light of the house,
closing the door,
crossing the threshold between comfort and something nameless.
Feeling that momentary fear and stirring of … what?
You stroll, relaxing into this former version of yourself.
you at six,
It’s all the same really.
At night, you bump right into yourself.
Like that dear friend you can call after years and years
and pick up right where you left off.
The daytime chattiness of your mind slumbers with the rest of the world
leaving you to finally just be you.
Regular, secret you.
The stars are the mood-enhancing backdrop.
Hey, remember us?
Got a little absorbed in your life, didn’t you?
We just wanted to remind you that you are ridiculously tiny.
Thought you should know.
Also, we’re far away.
And we are giant balls of burning gas.
Ruminate on that, little earthling.
You look up, lost in the maze of stars, almost losing your footing.
You feel as if you’ve been working diligently on a thousand-piece jigsaw
making some visible progress
and suddenly find out that it’s a mere fraction of the true image.
which, at last count, has about two billion pieces.
A little overwhelming, but kinda cool too.
You always loved a challenge.
Are you the only one awake, you wonder?
But part of you yearns to think so.
As if, in walking this street at night,
you’ve stumbled on some great secret
only a few have uncovered.
A mysterious gateway,
The C.S. Lewis wardrobe.
(That thing must exist somewhere.)
And you realize
that nighttime strolls are your touchstones
There are only so many.
They gently remind you
of who you really are
when nobody else is around.
You turn into your driveway
And inwardly smile at the lights that shine from the house,
welcoming you back to the pattern of nighttime routine.
But you hesitate slightly.
You don’t want to lose this.
This open wildness and nostalgia.
But no worries, little earthling.
It will be waiting
Another night in the future.
Another perfectly imperfect you.
You walk into your sanctuary
And close the door behind.