When you grieve for yourself-
not pity, you understand, but mourning-
it’s not for old times or missed boats.
There’s one reason only: you find you’ve lost
stillness. Well, not when asleep, you’re still
when asleep. Then again, you’re asleep, so can’t
relish reflecting the peace of a mirror-like lake.
Awake, wind always ruffles your surfaces now.
It’s a bit tiring, yet you’d best
get accustomed to it:
these small spasms that jerk you
about are mere samples,
the buzz of what’s coming,
You can’t be at peace outwardly,
anymore-the way you’re at peace
in your depths now. Better that
than the reverse. Look, you’re in sync:
universe, you, all life
metabolic, ceaseless in motion,
waves, seeds, eggs breaking
open galaxies wheeling,
colliding, suns dying ablaze
cells dividing who needs stillness?
Stillness is death.
No. Even death can’t be still. Death’s alive
with activity, bright putrefescent bacteria.
Compost squirms hot, catabolic.
Stillness not to be found since the big bang
shuddered awake through each vibrating string.
Who are you, then, to mourn? Whitman dared sing
the body electric. Here’s your chance.
Go him one better, dear. Dance.
Used by permission of the author.