The trees glow under the yellow lights,
And acorns crack beneath my feet.
The wind whips down the leaf-strewn street,
Taking little leaves for little flights.
Crystal dew blankets the blue grass,
And birds wait quietly for the night to pass.
The middle of my forehead is marred
By wrinkles, which map my concern.
In a sudden fit I stop––and turn
To face the ruthless wind. How hard
It is to “know thyself”! How easy to fear
What I will be this time next year . . .
For now I’m finally facing my soul,
And what once seemed calm and still
Is now writhing in the grip of my will,
Which threatens to swallow it whole.
(Were You, Lord, just something I chose?)
Is faith a choice, a mere “I suppose”?
I consider what it would mean
To “suppose” no more, to embrace my own
Ignorance: at last I’d be alone,
And would no longer fear the unseen.
I’d be free from “the wrong,” and “the true,”
Free to do what I will to do––
The birds chirp, elaborating
On their plans for the day, and I hear
Cars whizzing by on the highway near
My home. I see the black sky fading
To gray as a mist rolls in like a sheet
From over the hills and down to their feet.
Little halos take shape around
The heads of the streetlights, and I think:
I do not want the freedom to eat, drink,
Then die forgotten by what’s beyond,
Comforted only by what I can see.
No, for I am with God and He’s with me,
Both in my stillness and my occasional fear;
He's shown me that faith means leaving
This world in death, not ignorant, but believing
That the God who is there is also here.