too timid to wave, it is for practice that i live on island

morning quietly sheds night’s skein, thick 
woolen clouds silver in their support, helping 
to keep humming human dreams close 
to our collective skittering heart. yesterday i 
walked to the library, my route taking me past 
this island town’s solitary residential retirement 
home. an elderly man framed in top floor 
window, i could not see him well, only 
able to discern puff of cloud-white hair 
absent everywhere but his ears. he, solitary
in his framing, and i, self-conscious 
on my trundling legs, my feet 
and their unknowable tread. i wanted to wave 
at him, though i couldn’t see him well, to let him
know that i too am human, and despite the river
of memory in my swimming mind, i also exist 
in the Present. i could not tell 
if he was looking at me, my eyes 
obscured by his ears, their bird nests of tufted hair, 
and so i did not wave, fearing
the foolishness i would feel at prying myself
into his top floor framing. what rights do we have
as Human; do we rightly demand for health 
care? is it acceptable to believe we have a right to
love? continuing on my library feet, all those bound 
books, my hands remain at my sides and the elderly
man disappears. this morning light gathers itself, and i am 
too late to wave at that man. a friend mocks me 
for my persistent orbit of ocean and tide, in the thoughts 
i commit to writing; the wave i hoped to give this
man, perhaps the ocean will allow it for me once
again. for this is Fall, and we are a species 
of failure. for this is a round planet
on an oblong solar path, and we are given
rights to repeat.

Published by Zak

an intertidal island in an ocean of impermanence.

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