Thursday, February 24, 2011

Things I Miss

When I heard news of the death of Stuart Cable, the drummer from the band Stereophonics, I
dismissed it as yet another tragedy and a classic case of rock and roll overload.  Something drew me to investigate the band, and I went to the song "Maybe Tomorrow".   The yearning and sadness of the song aroused feelings in me.  I would have to call these feelings melancholy because I watched the video of the song and I saw young men doing what they loved to do: write and play songs, preparing for a rock concert.  It was something I had hoped to do as a young man but never achieved.  I had too many character flaws; I wasn't enough of a team player to work with a band.  I had to be the boss.  Then this poem emerged.  

The things I miss the most
are things I never had,
or things I had but was too dense
to know they were there.
I miss loving when I was young.
I miss believing my future would be beautiful.
I miss having people weep
at a work of art I made,
while I weep at a work of art
someone else has made.
I miss the song I didn't learn how to write.
I miss the book I didn't publish
because I was so high I couldn't find the page.
I miss readers to love me, and I miss writers
to love.
I miss my life, the one I'm not living.
I miss the world, the one that's dying.
I miss the bears.  I miss the elephants.
I miss trees of mahogany.
The reefs at Bimini are empty of fish.  
I miss people who know themselves.
If there were more,  they might have helped me.
I miss knowing myself.  If I had, sooner, I could have enjoyed being young.
I missed half my life while I was living it.  I don't want to miss the rest of it.
It is possible, after all, that my future is beautiful.
It is possible.

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