When upon that frosted October eve
I did tread with a shuffling step
along the familiar path from Main Street to my home.
Walking beneath many bright stars that did provide
just the light required for me to find my way.
At the point where the path does branch
presenting the option to take the way less traveled.
Once I was a person
who would stop to experience the evening and
the jeweled vastness of sky above.
This effect now occurs much less often that it did in my youth
Often I would compare looking out at the
stars to the feeling I get when I view the ocean.
So vast with no far boundary in sight.
An unusual site to someone who grew up
cradled at the base of a great mountain
where horizons loom high above, all around and reassuringly close
seldom farther than short walking distances.
And the sun setting early
and long before the sky has turned to black.
A musty odor from brown, damp leaves
was reluctantly borne in thick waves by the clear air.
And served to remind that this same day
had been so dominated by a blowing cold rain
and by heavy gray clouds
and then I first noticed
how my feet were behaving in a way that my mind
did not order.
They were moving along the earth
more slowly than I have willed them to move.
They were rubbing along the earth
with a near-caress of gentle friction,
telling my mind that my heart
needed some time
in an instant my heart did guide my dazed thoughts
away to places not connected through space or time
(or the universe exists solely for me. I am a part of a greater identity.)
does the universe exist for me? Am I a part of a greater identity?
Do I exist at all?
Have I been here before or has someone related to me,
not through family,
in our behalf?
Does the answer matter at all?
I may have been to this place before, in another time
if not me then someone related, not through family
someone has been here in my behalf
I feel the resonance of another
as if reviewing experiences
and dreamlike sights, sounds and tastes
as I have uncounted time before
from the center of this faint nebulas of sensuous experience
I am faced with clear and strong emotional memories
I am familiar with the myth of the path not taken
I believe that neither man nor nature makes choices
as water flows downhill by all available routes
according to its nature
I take all possible paths not prohibited by physical laws
or by my moral nature
all ways are followed
just as water runs down a hill
not choosing but taking all available routes
parting, rejoining and parting again
according to its own nature
— by Ross Johnston