all poems and photographs
© by Maya Stein

all poems and photographs
© by Maya Stein
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Wednesday, February 08, 2006

these twenty minutes
















Watching the sun go down
is not always the cat's meow,
some righteous, revelatory moment
that catches your breath in such a way
it makes you think, my GOD,
isn't this world just so ASTONISHING,
and aren't I just so darned lucky to be
right here, right now, and isn't it all
just about the patience, and timing,
and the need to slow down and
show your damn gratitude once in awhile,
and look, dear, look at the beautiful thing
just to the left of us, and look at the
hard but beautiful truth just to the right,
and the luck, and the wisdom, and the rightness
of THIS VERY MOMENT, and I am just going to sit here
and ENJOY IT ALL, and APPRECIATE NATURE and
FIND MY INNER HAPPINESS reflected in it,
and go about my business afterward knowing
I was made better by simply PAYING ATTENTION!

You know what?
Sometimes that's bullshit.

Sometimes the sun going down means
you've got just these twenty minutes
to get the last light for tennis or go for a run
or miss the evening commute or make the movie
or get to the store before the mad rush
or leave something permanent behind,
any piecemeal shred of the day's creation.

Sometimes, you think, twenty minutes isn't nearly
enough, and there's so much to do still, and
the sky is dwindling into obscurity, which means
a part of you is dwindling into obscurity, too,
you feel it, and want to give the sun a run for its money,
you want to make the big move, paint the broadest, brightest stroke,
put your whole body on the line to prove to yourself
you are still here, vigorous, permanent, hands as big as mountains,
heart impermeable to disappointment,
something of you never leaving you, ever,
and all of you holding fast, holding still, holding on.

7 comments:

crystal said...

I thought I was the only one who felt this way at night...the need to accomplish something, create something, leave one more mark.

la vie en rose said...

so true, so true!

Yummyteece said...

YES!

christina said...

The second half of that poem was so beautiful. The first half made me laugh: it's true sometimes. Sunsets can be so over done.

steph said...

the truth in this is astounding.

GoGo said...

Both ends are truth. It depends on the day. Sometimes, I can appreciate a sunset and know seeing it will fill my pallette the next day, and sometimes I don't know whether to believe its bull or its shit

dweezila said...

i know what TRYING TO APPRECIATE is like...and I know what TRYING TO BEAT THE SUNSET is like. What seems the foundation for both of these things is a kind of hunger for getting something or somewhere. We so deeply want the sunset to touch us. We want to be moved by it, like it's an answer to something, a missing puzzle piece that will reveal itself if we stay perfectly still. The rush too, like some strange prize you can win if you push very hard. A prize that sends you upward. Great post.