So this is it: my perfect patch of anomie.*
I left myself
on the cold seat of a fast train
and leapt into the verge without a map,
rolled into weedy thorns
and got caught up
in brackish afterthoughts —
a little late but inescapable,
given the size of the train,
its destination, and the realization
that most of what I owned
was still on board and I could feel
its weight but not its worth at least
not till I hit the rocks
of who am I and what am I to do
in this strange place of could-have-beens.
I could have been
a passenger still burning up the tracks still
going somewhere fast
or might have been
a sojourner who walked and never
missed the beaten track,
who gave the early train a pass –
and found a hidden path
to unexpected shores.
I could be home by now
or coming round the bend
(champagne in hand)
instead of rolling in my little patch
for my phantom bags to land.
*Anomie is a lack of purpose, identity, or ethical values (in a person or society); disorganization; rootlessness; disorientation of the personality resulting in unsocial behaviour.
Categories: Poetry, Uncategorized
Having jumped once I am inclined to stay on the train and perhaps pursue some new tracks?
Go for it, Hilary!
I’ve read this before but just read it again. I love the part “or might have been
a sojourner who walked and never missed the beaten track.” I’m taking this to mean that we don’t have to be on such a fast pace in our faith, doing, doing, doing but more like a sojourner, spending time with people, learning and listening and seeing where God takes us. I’m a retiree and I can’t take the fast pace anymore but I don’t feel any less adventureous or useful to God.