Old Man Waking

From dream to dark to feeble hint of day

Night’s quiet, dim forgetfulness subdue

Again to slip on self and its worn ways

Again to wake, again to rise and do


Step into a morning bright with star

Ancient, pulsing, murmurating light

From times and places infinitely far

to fading speck of man in fading night


Someone in the mirror. Not quite you.

Echoes of the youth that quickly fled

A deepening of old lines into new

Bright river drying into riverbed


It never seemed a fragile thing, to be

By timeless sense of youth, we are misled

But through the seasons slowly come to see

More pieces of our heart among the dead


It seems we are to learn by ache of years

Learn slowly like a stone in stream is bent

Swept by currents gentle and severe

Shaped by friction more than argument


Along the twisting road from dust to dust

What youth could not believe, age comes to see

Bones go not where we will but where they must

From dream to dark to vast eternity