Along for the Ride

There are times when I’m determined
(or at least, some times I feel)
that my life should find its purpose
in constructing something real:
an edifice in marble, some landmark
of stone and steel,
so that my passing leaves some sign.
Such thoughts have their appeal
when I imagine that my hands
are tight upon the wheel,
and that this life is more than just
what cards the world may deal.

To leave a mark upon this earth,
to feel a sense of pride;
a man seeks to find meaning
where two roads may coincide:
to make finite steps forward,
rather than to merely slide
along inside the slipstream,
carried onward by the tide;
to know that one has gathered up
enough good sense inside
to choose the path their feet would walk,
one’s wisdom undenied.

Yet other times, it seems to me,
I think with greater sense,
and ponder with less confidence
my whole experience:
a lifetime spent in wondering,
in straddling the fence,
denying often greater truths
for lack of evidence
(at least, the kind that leaves its spoor,
some fleeting track or scent)
and feeling lost inside a maze
of moments, gained and spent.

So then what does it matter
whose hands are upon the wheel?
Both journeys planned and unrehearsed
have proven their appeal.
Too often my decisions
(or their counterpart, no choice)
result in finding chaos
where I cannot hear my voice.
What destination beckons?
Let the universe decide;
for I am just a passenger
come along for the ride.

02 JUN 2006

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