I woke up Saturday joyful at my body’s triumph
over virus, breathing again without pain and enjoying
winter and the cold that keeps us sane and sober.
But by Sunday my mortality had returned.
If I pass away now, how to assess my days.
Is balancing income and expenditure reports enough?
Our marriage and our piece of land. Dependent
on economy. For food delivery and machine repair.
In my youth, I imagined crossing mountains
to the sea, living off the land. Enduring weather patiently.
It's impossible except three days or three weeks,
with a load of supermarket food on your back.
So I accept home gratefully. And a niche in society.
We could explore these hollows and hills on foot
but my wife is weak and I am lazy. We use the library
to travel inner space. We found this place.
Next spring, a garden. Dig depleted soil behind
garage and fertilize it from our compost pile.
Learn the names and ways of cultivars, their relations
to wild plants and the edge. Finally know the fern and sedge.
Lazy one, life is short. You have never fought, to yourself
you remain unknown. You go the way of an unknown
soldier. Unable to assess the purpose of the battle.
Nameless, hungry, same as the neighbor's cow.
Be happy, slap happy. Within your generation, surrounded
by history. Seeking mastery through practice.
Rewarded with the sunrise, sunset. Yet to have delivered
on the promise expected by the parents of the baby.
Copyright 2012 by Robert Ronnow.