Retrospect

How clear the lens of retrospect
illuminates the distant past,
and brings in focus now, so fast,
foolish acts we’d rather neglect.

It is not always a kindness,
this sharpness of review;
one can easily misconstrue
an earlier bliss as blindness,

and waste so much precious time now
justifying a lack of sense
or imagining a defense,
forgetting not just when, but how

we came to learn from our mistakes.
What we are is what resulted;
and each time the fragile heart breaks,
future selves are not consulted.

No wonder then, this glass is so clear;
its academic and dry glare
sees history as cold and bare,
and stumbles forward, its eyes rear.

16 AUG 2003

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