Declining an RSVP

We have killed two decades with our lives;
Clocks and pocket-watches, notebooks and meetings
have spoken to us in the language of Ur,
a Babylonian-Chaldean moonmist frenzy of words
and tired metaphors.

In twenty years you’d think I might’ve found
some calling, or at least a claim to fame,
instead of still wide-eyed, casting around
without reknown or fortune to my name.

But life is how it happens, more or less;
the roads you travel lead to different ends.
To me, the truest measure of success
is measured not by wealth, but by your friends.

Now, I have made acquaintances and lost
their names and numbers; others I forgot;
for memories too accumulate a cost,
and keeping all means more space must be bought.

It’s not as if I don’t have extra cash to spend
(though extra is a matter of degree)
but rather that I try to live now, not depend
on sentimental hopes or history.

Right now, they’re meeting in some suite —
those people that were my old high school mates —
and rather than by their standards admit defeat,
I choose the world that is, and trust my fate.

For what is it they want, some way to reminisce
while failing to acknowledge things have changed?
That window to the world that no longer exists,
and peering through that dark glass seems so strange.

I cannot walk a backward way, and seem to not have grown;
the world from where I came holds me no more.
Besides, in this new place I am not here alone,
but have a life that is worth staying for.

20 AUG 2003

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