Expired Contracts - a poem on friendships cut off prematurely
We're All the Crew, Each Life is a Ship
I wrote this, and "The Dance is Over", in the same afternoon, as a form of therapy, I suppose you could say. They were a way of giving closure to a painful episode in my life.
I wasn't planning on sharing these two poems, but when I came upon them again last week, and still liked them, I decided to see if anyone else did, too.
May expired contracts be kept to a minimum in your life.
Relationships should last forever,
Like the souls they twine.
Unfortunately, they surrender
Like a ship overrun
Submits to a force of cutthroats.
But I try to see each one out
To it's end.
No, I cannot make a truce with Change.
My ship is driven on,
And those about me plow the waves too,
With the gale of Self-Seeking bellying out
Where are they going, usually under-manned?
Sometimes I wish I had a lesser boat –
One that doesn't require more hands
Than I've got.
Still, I'm glad for those aboard with me.
He's my Mate, and even acts as Captain,
Which is a position I do not envy.
Then there's Nate.
He probably won't be coming back on board,
After we prepare to leave the next harbor.
But he doesn't see it as abandonment.
His contract is up, that's all.
Jem is another story.
He's not like part of the crew, exactly.
He's more like running
Through a hay meadow in May,
In a splashy rain.
Yet he contributes more than I can tell,
Because there is laugher and mercy
In his presence.
Many others have come and gone,
Their contracts up,
Except for one that I had to
For attempting mutiny.
He still lies below,
In shackles wrought by his own deceit.
Many others are still with me.
Some are better at reading the charts than I.
Some try to pick the compass apart,
Just to see how it works.
Others are better than any gold
Most of all, I can see each day my loyal
Who knows the ways of the sea
Better than I do,
And knows where I am going.
My Mate and I watch Him together,
And His contract never expires.
- January 11th, Sunday - 2009