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Dreams are a simple way to make sense

of the past, often used as a mental grip

on the bafflement we feel

when choice engulfs us, not just hems us in.

 

Shall I become that which I know I am not?

Perhaps, an empty shell, I will be found out:

a shameful gambler like many,

and primed to receive his just deserts.

 

Or, better, to receive the same without regret,

saying “Enough, I tried and failed, move on,”

my mantra: “Remember the past with honesty

while discarding the mask that pierces your soul.

 

In this your future lies, not the hands or minds

of evil ponderers picturing new empires.”

Wing your own flight path, avoid the turbulence

of unfounded discredit; permission to hurt denied.

 

As years march away we acquire cracked memories,

misrepresented as wisdom and sought as trophies.

They are eye-catching and ephemeral

as points of light dancing inside a golden ring.

 

All are packaged up in far corners of life's offices,

vignettes of change and its stubborn resistance;

the canny recognise themselves,

their fractured self-knowledge needing no prompt.

 

Others seek solace in majestic nature only,

convinced that a Himalayan mountain fastness

or the smallest gecko may complete the lived life:

impregnable fortresses of authentic truths.

 

In short, to reconcile heart and mind, reason

and desiderata, acknowledging the Yin and Yang,

the light and dark in their disordered lives,

while fighting primal need for praise.

 

The child within, behind crustal grease paint

like Homer Simpson, is drawn to any bauble;

the thoughtful, too, accept with cynicism

the schoolyard traductions of those who guide their fate.

 

For those with inquiring minds, a life simply lived

is the greatest of all achievements, held aloft

in celebration and love. Yet simple precepts

prove hard enough to win along the way.

 

For those who have tried, and failed, a familiar burden

is the legacy they shoulder each day. From this albatross

they may still understand that wisdom is as elusive

as the first light of dawn: once found, it is never lost.

 

Chris Hubbard

2020

 

◄ Memoirs and Reflections

You Drive Your Car ►

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