How much of this life do we own? Payments are always coming due. We are the ones who signed the papers, but there’s something more, there’s something that can’t be helped. You and I look different than we did in morning light. Now we wade in lead boots and gather no speed away from this dead center, or toward something brighter. Which is to say away from here, where the embers have dwindled. Which is to say we can fly only with the creatures of dreams, if we can fly at all. The dreams will become family, the dreams will become clan, scattered like dust among stars in the cages of our ribs, in the cages of our cries, in our breath in the night. Sometimes the dreams may be of falling and cold earth rushing to us, but, travelers now, they’ll call us travelers, amid the dust and the stars where we’ve known the dark eclipse, and we’ve flown with those creatures of dreams between galaxies. We won’t be in lead boots once we’ve started to dream. We’ll no longer make payments on things that hold us down.
This is not the end of this poem -- something pulls at us forever.
~ Ralph Murre
This piece was first published in Iconoclast, and subsequently became the title poem for mylatest book. (Auk Ward Editions 2010,email@example.com)
Reminder: as with all the graphics on the site, you can see the drawing in full-size by clicking on the image.
Ralph Murre is the author of "Crude Red Boat" and "The Price of Gravity, both books of poetry; author and illustrator of "Psalms", a book of poetry and art, co-author, (with Sharon Auberle)of "Wind Where Music Was", a book of poems of experience, and he is editor/publisher of several books of prose, poetry, photography, and drawings from Little Eagle Press, which he founded. Ordering information for these books is available from
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