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Stanley Kunitz (poem)

Monday, December 02, 2013

I have walked through many lives,
some of them my own,
and I am not who I was,
though some principle of being abides,
from which I struggle not to stray.
When I look behind,
as I am compelled to look before I can gather strength to proceed on my journey,
I see the milestones dwindling toward the horizon and the slow fires trailing from the abandoned camp-sites, over which the scavenger angels wheel on heavy wings.
Oh, I have made myself a tribe out of my true affections,
and my tribe is scattered!
How shall the heart be reconciled to its feast of losses?
In a rising wind,
the manic dust of my friends,
those who fell along the way,
bitterly stings my face.
Yet I turn.
I turn,
exulting somewhat,
with my will intact to go wherever I need to go,
and every stone on the road precious to me.
In my darkest night,
when the moon was covered and I roamed through the wreckage,
a nimbus-clouded voice directed me:
-Live in the layers, not on the litter-
Though I lack the art to decipher it,
no doubt the next chapter in my book of transformations is already written.
I am not done with my changes.
-Stanley Kunitz

No matter what, we are not DONE with our changes. Thank you for visiting.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Wow, wonderful writing.
    745 days ago
    emoticon Thank you for peeking in on, The Layers, by Stanley Kunitz. It is my one and only blog left standing (used to blog nearly every day with a "Dear Prudence," Post, but removed all save this) and even though I posted it over 6yrs ago...and he wrote it back in 1998 (I think) isn't it STILL as refreshing and as true to the soul as the words that can STILL *ring* through LIFE. That's what I love about reading: no matter how old, the meaning never fades. emoticon
    750 days ago
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