February 06, 2009

darkness around us is deep

If you don't know the kind of person I am
and I don't know the kind of person you are
a pattern that others made may prevail in the world
and following the wrong god home we may miss our star.

I could have started with another poem by another poet (this is from William Stafford's "A Ritual to Read to Each Other") - several come to mind (I'll leave a bunch of folks that I like out of this initial list under the pressure of my very first post): Roethke, Hayden, Frost, Yeats, Moore, Cummings, Williams, Plath - all the old folks from home.....
but William Stafford is closer to what I'm feeling and thinking tonight.


And so I appeal to a voice, to something shadowy,
a remote important region in all who talk:
though we could fool each other, we should consider --
lest a parade of our mutual life get lost in the dark.

For it is important that awake people be awake,
or a breaking line may discourage them back to sleep;
the signals we give -yes or no, or maybe-
should be clear: the darkness around us is deep.

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