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Cast Away


A world lives in the meadow.

Flowers open their eyes to the sky

whether or not the sun shines.

The stray tree houses the busy bird

and it does not betray her.


When trampled, grass pushes up

on elbows, stands, spreads

his arms, touched and touching

the living and the dead.


The meadow’s harmony

is as alluring as a flame.

After a fire feasts

the meadow settles into earth

then rises like the sun.

It does not point a finger

at the stray match.


Why does man weigh his mistakes

on a scale of love? We fill

one side with blame and the other

with excuse, then choose to leave

when anger settles into stony weight.


And when we leave, we move

to another world where windows

stare, doors ignore, and concrete

covers trampled feelings.


Alone, we turn toward the wind,

stroll in the mist, lay on the grass.

All for the solace of touch.

When loneliness licks the soul

we push up on elbows, lift our faces

and beg the sun to rise.


Some stand and spread their arms

in the cold, dream of the embroidery

of love. Others flee to other worlds

for warmth, and if not found

they settle on a street

where nothing blooms.


— t. l. cummings

Shutterstock image.

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