Close to ‘It’ on many daze
that elusive feeling
of sublime contentment.
The satisfaction of
knowing who I am
and what might really matter.

Much was precarious
and misfire, missed opportunity.
Close calls amid
the moments of being.

And all the while becoming.
Restless. Process.
Like a cold mountain stream.
The predestined collective impression
of all who knew me
along my vertiginous edges.

Realizing late
the slow climb
and precipitousness
of love–
the eternal assay.

Never rueing though,
just enjoying the heights
after all,
what it meant
to be so close, periodically
dissolved into something
or someone else.

It is there you will
finally find me
when recalling what it meant
to be who I really was.

Then you, too,
might come close,
be proximate your self.


Something resembling a summing-up in terms of many dreams. “It”–that elusive self-knowledge, ultimate truth, revelation, or epiphany. I’ve certainly reached stanza 1’s satisfaction with what self-knowledge and information about personal identity I have achieved. As well as a common sense awareness of things that do or don’t matter off the cuff.

Stanza 2–my list of misfires is a long one; everyone has such a list. I, fortunately, don’t have too many missed opportunities–in retrospect, having too many of those would have sucked! The many moments of being have luckily counterbalanced the close calls.

Stanza 3–becoming, what is probably the most interesting part of dreams–how they change/d us. The Process definitely is a restless one and, as the poem, indicates, a lifelong process or quest. To a large extent, others’ opinions or views of oneself fall into a collected collective and they will be what they will be apart from anything one could do or affect–i.e., are “predestined”. “Vertiginous edges”–well, there have been many and this always has kept life interesting. (One thing I have lately realized is how much people generally ‘push the envelope’ in just about any activity you might care to name. Human nature?)

Stanza 4–I feel life has been a slow steady climb (for me anyway)–the hard-earned quality of process and self-knowledge. Love gets in this stanza as it should and perhaps must. “The eternal assay”–assay as in attempt. Couldn’t have stated this better methinks.

Stanza 5–no, not much rueing given the heights, closeness, fullness, fruition, etc. The last two lines are adapted from a Willa Cather quote about the nature of greatness. Periodically was better than naught and worked in the long run.

Stanza 7–after reading this poem, you pretty much know who I am and was. As proximate as I got to various things discussed, maybe you did, too, vicariously, to me, and to a closer understanding of your quest, process and self. Your/The Essence of whoever/whatever.

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