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Hand over hand

March 7, 2018

Day after day

year after year

I stood by the well

and lowered my bucket into the depths

I’d watch it go deep out of sight

until I felt the rope begin to tug with

the weight of everything that

replaced the emptiness that minutes ago

filled the bucket

Then hand over hand

I would pull the bucket up from the deep

out of the dark

and each time as it inched into the light

I would stand slack-jawed in amazement

at the overflowing treasure

that dripped over its brim





They all breathed fire and fancy

as they danced and twirled

and rearranged themselves

into impossible sequences

of beauty and wonder

But now I lower my bucket

into that same well

until I hear the clank as it hits dusty bottom

And I wonder how such depths

become so dry and depleted

I miss the anticipation of discovering

what mysteries each bucket held

I miss the heat and the heart of the fire

And I long ago stopped hoping

anyone would understand

the longing and grief

inspired by an empty bucket

But the bottom line is that

a thing need not be understood

in order to be felt.



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