Regrets like Stones

1

Regrets like stones slick from the tide,
polished clean with time and rumination.
If I bent to collect each glimmer in the surf,
my pockets would split and arms overflow.
Ever so often I might crouch on the salty kelp
to examine an especially bright agate veneer,
dust and brush dry the surface with my palms.
One thousand heavy possibilities lurking
in such a smooth oval of caramel consistency.
At last I must lay the stone down cold
and straighten myself to continue my walk.
It would be too easy to gather every rock in a great tote
and scatter the bitter regrets throughout my life.

2

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On Looking Back

Image

When I feel my blood slowing

and my lungs sinking toward my spine,

I will not indulge in quiet panic

nor will I bargain for another sunrise.

 

No, I will recall a temperate August day

with my first love, moving bare through

the calmest lake, our clothes held high

above our heads like flags in a parade.

 

I will remember the games that children play.

My sister peeling coins of seeds

from a waxy shell, instilling the greatest meaning

in a soft trail of sap found

on a wild cherry’s scratchy bark.

 

I will picture México and la playa,

my parents hooked arm through arm

before a technicolor sky, awaiting

rooftop meteors to catch light as I

try to capture the cosmos on film.

 

I will think back to a thousand white mountain

powder days, catching air in waves on skis

or dodging trees on trails that lead to

silent empty bowls of snow.

 

When I feel my vision dim down and

my limbs turn light, I will not resist my final breath.

I’ll be awash in the glow of happier times-

the beauty of knowing I did exist.

 

 

Photo is one I took of Blanca Lake this summer.