Regardless of what the calendar says,

the new year,

as in your new year,

can begin at any time.

 

It may descend like a soft rain

or rise up as a boulder-knocking wave.

 

When I was a young man,

I required intensity.

I was a lion, a storm,

lightning on the mountain.

 

Now, I am a leaf - slow-turning copper, red.

Now I am a soundless heron gliding over water at dawn.

An amber dragonfly navigating the forest.

A silent cloud curling backward like resting feathers

against a forgotten valley’s treeline.

 

Regardless of what the calendar says,

the new year,

as in your new year,

can begin at any time.

 

Like the Man of the North Road says,

the main thing being asked of you

is to be a good companion of the seasons.

 

Is it the season of kimonos falling open -

the Season of the Red Thread?

Is it the Season of Rain Turning to Ice?

Is it the Season of Golden Light Dancing on the Tips of Pine Needles?

Or, have you been dropped into a chasm of doubt

and you no longer see a living world beyond your own dark cloud?


(c) 2018 / Frank LaRue Owen (Wandering Stone Lantern) / purelandpoetry.com

sound: Real-Life Mystery / They Grow Layers of Life Within / Alio Die

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