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Here And Gone

look up

Look up.
I do this often lately.
I look up,
and I see the impossible depth of the atmosphere
as it stretches impossibly away,
and I am a tiny thing, an infinitessimal thing,
fleeting and small on the ground.

When I was a kid,
I stood in a copse of poplars —
thin, tall things they were,
reaching up and in toward the center of a spread of thick moss —
until the vertigo overtook me
and I had to lie back on the cool earth
while the sky and the trees spun around above me,
leaves chattering like shallow water rushing over stones.

I was nothing and all things,
I was but a tiny piece of the conscious universe,
a selfless whole within a whole.
I was free.
There was no me to pin down anymore.
I could not be found.
I was here and gone.

I look up now
as spring spreads branches wide and opens the sky
and remember being nine and free,
an infinite whole,
and I am free again for moments,
here and gone,
here and gone.

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The above poem is a response to Amy Turn Sharp's call for 5-minute breakfast poems on Fridays during the month of April.

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