John Staveley


Somewhere in my past


Somewhere in my past I spoke to horses
And listened to them argue about god,
I walked with them and ran though their grasses.

At other times, I’ve ambled among trees,
Or slept a while in an English garden
Or even tried to swim in stormy seas.

You must be careful swimming near the shore
Where the water lies on its intention.
When caught out, you don’t trust it anymore;

The sea regrets it all, at night it cries:
Because it’s lost the measure of connection:
For all the damage that it does with lies.

Once I tried to sing with the dawn chorus,
It sings a song that only time can sing.
If you listen it is trying to warn us.

“You must be careful swimming with the old.
You must be careful swimming with the young.
You must take care of everything you’re told.”

With me upon his back when we were young
My father even tried to swim with dolphins.
I fear drowning still, have always done;

But we must each engage with what we fear;
Sing out loud although our voice is wrong;
Hold those we love, who love us, very near.

This is how the fragile become strong.
This is how the damaged become strong.

Submitted: Monday, August 26, 2013
Edited: Monday, August 26, 2013
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