• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 07


Oh child of my childhood, child I once was—
how fortuitous that you should arrive
at life’s doorstep three quarters of a century on
to remind me of who I once was before
I was swallowed up by the multitudes;
the layers, the divisions, the categories,
that designate my place among the wild
scramble, the experience of all living things.

Drinking you in now I see myself before
the rendition, innocence streaming from
my eyes, a tinge of fear for all to come,
You there, glowing among the choir, a boy
or a girl, with an uncertain voice, male or female,
treble tones unsure if the future would be
forever falsetto, or reach higher or lower,
with certainty for tenor or soprano.

I willingly volunteered to wear the many masks,
borrowed identities, worn to be loved, faces
of whim to fit in, to become who I or others thought
I should be, while you, forgotten, stayed steady
refusing modulation, the origin of concentric circles
at the center, branching out into a lifelong tree
of events that left me lost and humbled. Along the
way, somehow, we let go of one another’s hand.



You are forever painted onto my psyche
a cave painting that changes shape in
the wavering light whilst I move around,
pressing the world to reveal my identity.
You have always been there, through eons,
waiting for me to catch my breath, to calm,
to give in and give up any further inquiry.

So dear heart, the painting lives on long after your
pseudo disappearance, not in the numerical mind,
but in the softer intuitive chambers of the heart.
Though the paint fades and peels, the colors pock
with age, your face remains forever young, reminding
me to maintain this wonderful sense of possibility,
to carry it forth, as the center piece of who I am.

It is why I find myself wandering late at night, squinting
to locate the room where your portrait hangs where I
will dwell humbly in the not knowing what comes next
when the candle flickers out.