Idol (Idle) Worship


The lines of many Decembers, come and gone,
etched, as tracks of years, into mine countenance.

At times (tho’ less-and-less with ev’ry forward footfall),
I follow them back,
retracing the familiar paths to a time…

when dreams were real, corporeal;
not vaporous, indecipherable images
saying little, muttering in meaningless languages,
thus, meaning less…

when hope, alway beckoning, was ever-bright;
not tinted, tainted with all-too-present haunted-memories of failures…

when imagination was wholly unfettered,
not shadowed, subdued by too-soon-to-come looming limitations
of societally-sanctioned, racially-restricted occasions
of fortuity
and opportunity.

It hath taken quite the while for me,
a stubbornly-slow-student,
to learn, to believe this truth about
short-lived, dyin’-at-dawn’s-light dreams
and sullied hope
and shackled imagination…

Frequent pilgrimages and genuflections
to these misbegotten shrines,
always praying their transformations
into something, anything in line
with mine expectations
is to treat (is to have made) them as idols;
ones made in my mind’s image.

And insensate, deaf, mute, and blind,
they can receive and can render neither love nor justice.

Dare I turn away
in a self-saving act of fondest forgetfulness?

Aye, and may I (will I? I will!) practice this discipline
that it becomes my daily living’s new and finer art.

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