All the World's a Stage

No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—
Almost, at times, the Fool.
 The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot

The mental words of a critical mind lash endlessly against this tired back.
That I, in some regard, might find myself alleviated - or there for lack
Of words, yet words are mine and mine alone;
A secret tome,
With rare solemn respite

Indeed, these words have I written and rewritten.
Upon my tongue and brain both smitten,
But I dared not let them breathe;
Lest my subtle arrogance precede
My mired thoughts and darkened soul

It is not for me to dream, for dreams have I;
Alcoves full and cups to fill the sky.
While stoic facade may appear but restrained,
indeed at times I feel constrained,
As if airy words are less treasured

I do so wish to find my part,
Through writer's pen or brilliant stroke of art.
But no tools have I to silence this longing -
As if a stubborn bell keeps calling,
Hurrying me from home

Stuck in tracks of difficult routine,
I confess I am no Houdini -
It is not for me but to come and go,
With naught but fields of dreams to grow;
A terrible way to live or die

Beneath these weighted words of heavy load I sleep,
A cold and battered blanket upon my burdened feet.


A long time ago when I was contemplating existence with a close friend (at least one so close at the time), I commented idly about how I felt that life did not travel a linear path nor one so simply circular.  No, I mentioned that I believed life traveled in spirals, constantly returning us to moments from our past... but with new perspectives, knowledge, or other such growth.  We might choose to disagree or believe that such self-awareness is never so acutely familiar, but I find it hard to accept.

Curiously, this has become all too true of my own existence, and quite ironically the topic of my first return post.  I have traversed all my old stomping grounds; this blog, and the many others that lay vacant from past seasons.  Indeed, I have seen all too often the promises, dreams, desires, and wishes that have plagued me since time immemorial.  Some embarrassing, some heartwarming, and others quite laughable.

And I, in my spiral stairway, desperately hold onto the hope that I have grown, even if only minimally. Even if only in my perception of self.  I know that ultimately, in some vein physical, emotional, or spiritual, that I do not find myself at familiar crossroads unchanged.  Indeed, even if I wanted to believe that I might find myself crossing old footpaths ignorantly, I cannot bring myself to release the burden of proof.  I have grown.  I have changed.

I have dreamed, and now it is time to lay those dreams to rest.