small birds

Photo: Jasper White/Getty Images

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On the Way to Windsor
By what road did you come?
I can tell by your eyes—
you lost something along the way.
Were you hurt or did you do the hurting?
Me? Both.

Did you drop anything willingly?
I know. That's a hard one.
I seem to have lost everything
that identifies me.
My heart's become a knapsack
with torn little holes.
I knew we’d meet like this.

Oh, there are those who keep to themselves.
When the wind sounds like a loved one,
they come out and squint.
But tell me, what does it mean
to dream on this side of suffering?
That we can rest more?
That we can hear small birds
unlace the dawn?

It seems very simple now.
We can finally talk when there isn't
much to say. It's quite beautiful,
isn't it?
— Mark Nepo

Excerpted from Reduced to Joy by Mark Nepo.