You thought your life
was going to be deep,
imagined you’d have thoughts
as large as whales
moving sine-cosine through you
all night long, all day long,
from wake to sleep and after death.
You thought that at this age
bills would pay themselves,
imagined you’d be soaring now
far above dirty and mundane,
that such small things would be beyond you
as you plunged and rose and plunged again
upon thermals, updrafts; flying upon the fullness
of cycles, the vast majesty of understanding All.
You never doubted that by this age
throngs would look to you for wisdom,
imagined yourself in whale-speak
sharing the meaning of tender, sharing the falcons’
long vision, imagined yourself
nodding at the seekers, shrugging when
needed to maintain mystery.
You thought this morning
about all that nonsense,
imagined yourself instead no longer hungry
and cold as you sat in your sad apartment.
The whales no longer passing through you
sine-cosine; you have no sky to fly,
nowhere to go. Deep thoughts
you once hoped for have left you adrift.
Instead you think about your empty shelves,
pretend you recall hearing songs in the ocean;
it seems so far from here
to the top of that last wave
but it’s really no farther now
than it has ever been: how simple it seems now:
shallow or deep, high or low, rich or poor,
hungry or sated: