Monday, January 25, 2010


When I stepped off the train, I had no idea where I was going. Truth be told, I had no idea where I was. People marched past me in all directions, eyes straight ahead. Purposeful. They knew, but I stood still, a step from the train.

The door slid shut behind me, and the warning bell blared. I took another step forward, away from the train as it slipped away down its track. Even it knew where it was going next.

This story began as so many of mine do: with an impression of a moment, but no end in sight. It's easy to lose momentum when you start without a destination. Really, it's like starting by standing still. No momentum at all. Just a tableau, an image. More a poem than a story, if anything.

Is this a failure, or an exercise? A release, or a pointless spinning of wheels? Obedience, or foolishness?

And here, the bitterness enters. It's not easy, this process. It's that much tougher regaining ground, having stood by for years and watched the clock run. Wanting it to be easy.

There's a parable. A king entrusts three of his servants with large sums of money. Two put the king's resources to work, and gain more. The third buries his share, only to dig it up later. The king is pleased with the first two. The third, he hurls out of the castle.

I remind myself a little too much of the third guy.

It's long past time to get a shovel, dig up the gold, and go to town.


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