Young love sighs with each new day
The fire brightly burns,
How slow the pages turn.
Old love remembers laughter in the rain
The withered embers yearn
And still the pages turn.
Yet in between love may decry
What it might have treasured;
Untended, the fire turns...
...while the pages quickly burn. There it was; the last line in the poem I have been trying to finish, and with that the clouds shifted, allowing the very last ray of evening sun to filter through the tiny hole in my window shade. It pierced my dimly lit bedroom, then disappeared as quickly as it came. How obliging the sun is. A cool breeze followed.
The ray of sun placed it’s light on the typewritten page as if to spotlight the end of this chapter in my life. The cool breeze represented the freshness of a new beginning. I feel a sense of peace now that I have completed my task. I enjoy writing poetry, although the mood does not hit me as often as I would like. In my early twenties I was writing a poem at least once or twice a week. At that point in time my passion for life was alive with the beauty of nature and the warmth of young love. As I became older I still appreciated the beauty that surrounded me, but I felt less of a need to record my feelings. I was still in love, too, but it was a more comfortable, secure love, with no frenzies; no jealousies. The roaring fire within had dwindled to a warm glow of burning embers, reminiscent of all those mornings after. Now even the burning embers are gone. I have the desire to express my feelings once again.
I am plagued with an unfamiliar melancholy that is being nourished by the unhappy circumstances of my life right now. I see no end in sight for this dreary feeling, so I will let it absorb my life. I might want to hold on to this comfortably numb feeling for as long as I can, being the martyr that I am. I manage to wander through my daily routine without so much as a whisper from my colleagues that there may be something wrong with me. I’ve been thinking about my childhood these past few days, and I feel an irresistible impulse to play the games I played as a child. I’ve been thinking about the boy across the street who would always throw water balloons at me, which brought to mind my first kiss—which also happened to come from the boy across the street. These memories bring to life a powerful longing for the past and for the way things were, and they remind me that I am getting old. Perhaps this is why I am unhappy.
When I was ten years old my aunt had given me a beautiful plaque for my birthday. It was inscribed with this poem by Nathanial Hawthorne: “Happiness is as a butterfly, which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.” The words happiness and butterfly played a big part in this poem for me, since my first thought was to get a net and catch as many butterflies as I could. In my childish way I thought that the more butterflies I caught, the happier I would be. Now I know that catching a butterfly before it is ready to settle down would be denying it the essence of its flight, and the simple act of chasing it would alter its course, and it would fly faster and further away, until I wouldn’t be able to see it anymore.