Why did I not remember so many women and so many names?
It was as if I had spent four years with only a handful of their faces.
Did so few of my high school class sisters impress me enough to imprint,
Or were only the best and brightest memories forever preserved in me?
One woman who I thought was extremely close to a grammar school friend
Seems to have lost all touch with this woman I thought was her sister.
A woman that I barely knew thanked me for a long-forgotten kind word;
Some seemed to still hold disdain for members not then seen as like-minded.
Does following a parental path and staying in one single-minded society
Forever lock us into childhood with our fears and beliefs held then?
Can one become truly reborn, destroying all past instinctual inclinations?
At what age do we become cast in stone, without ability to metamorphose?
These women who did not impact me enough to impact my memories:
Can I meet them again and have none of us affected by previous contact?
Do I have the desire or the energy to stretch myself any further
Than the relationships that I already consider my reasons to live?
Is it our mission on earth to stay within a certain community,
Or to reach across boundaries and include all those we can attract?
Should I simply wait for those who seek out my companionship,
Or is it my duty to seek out opportunities that encompass the earth?
I may never know the answer, but I do seek to honor those
Who have worked at becoming part of my life and spirit.
May I never turn away one who wishes me a kindness;
To do so would surely deprive both of us of a new lease on life.
I will continue to expose myself to other human experiences
As long as there are people who invite me to come along.
This causes me no small bit of anxious anticipation
That I may create a climate where I owe another restitution.
May my deathbed be surrounded by only those who love me
And are ready to forgive me all the ways I have harmed them.
I want them to know that I did not seek their forgiveness
Only because I did not know that they wanted this from me.
I live in fear that I will harm others with my presence,
Often wishing that I could live alone in a dark cave.
How else can I feel sure that my life's energy will balance,
Leaving no more pain than peace from my presence on earth?
Ah, here I go again, as my mother said, with my great arrogance,
Believing that my actions could make a difference in this world.
Where am I to go from here, now that no vulnerable creature needs me?
I simply close my eyes and ears and jump off a spiritual cliff.