The City Shadowed

This poem is about growing old.


The City Shadowed


I cannot remember my name. And

where I came from. Or when I came here.

I am not from this place, this city, and

its silent people, its pale-vaulted sky,

its black shadow silhouettes

flickering lightly across blank walls.


Here the bar staff talk in lilting Irish

cadences, and look straight through you

as they serve you. And they speak

like poets. Rhyme and rhythm, the

intonations of Joyce, or Tennyson.


I may be an untravelled Ulysses,

could be searching for his Happy Isles

to return to; I do not know.

Or perhaps for a sunset

to sail beyond in restlessness.


I must find a place to run towards,

hoping to find there myself arriving;

and not yield or surrender in fear of failure.

For I seek knowledge of myself,

nothing more.


And if I must forgo Dante's

unpeopled world beyond the sun,

then my home will be where virtue,

and reason lie. Or, should I yet fail,


I have my will and imagination

to guide me.


When I leave this city, its shadows

will engulf me, and I will strive

no longer. My horizons, on every hand,

will be still and sated, like a sinking star

in a gathering morning.


Chris Hubbard




◄ Saudade

Saint James of the Field of Stars ►


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