… so many mountains

so many mountains to be climbed,
so many steps along the way;
in laboring and struggling
is much that fills the average day

behold: the mind of innocence
that turns and warps when laden down;
among the cactuses and thorns,
another hill, another mound —

there is no simple reckoning;
there is what is. but the ideal
is like a blanket overhead
that blocks whatever light is real.

to live and seek for victory,
or to accept defeat:
these are the two alternatives,
perhaps. there’s no escheat

whereby some other life may come
to one who’s never lived it:
the only talents can be had
are those at birth-time gifted.

in climbing, and in balancing,
in moving hill to hill,
is evermore activity,
for mind and heart and will —

but let no truth go unremarked:
there’s poison near at hand,
and far away from every thought
is that most lethal land

where labor turns to prurience,
and lethargy to pain,
and though we may go forward, one
cannot go back again.

the journey always kills us:
always has, and always must —
for we are but a shadowplay
that flickers in the dust —

that flickers over mountainsides,
in rivulets of sweat,
in moments brief and harrowing
that are not over, yet.

but still, whatever good there is
we must seek out, at last;
so many mountains rise, indeed,
and progress isn’t fast —

but look upon the lonely sights,
and know this truth, condensed:
that our own limitations are
what we must work


Tagged: Tags

Leave a Reply