I made some substantial changes to the leaving poem I’d been working on (previously called Taking Flight) so I thought I should post the final version just to set the record straight so to speak.
Arriving at Now
Sometimes, it seems we wake and find
we’ve spent whole months
or lives, looking always ahead,
as if life, to be lived
is around a corner somewhere
and now is nothing
But this at last is now.
This is you, the girls you know,
and friends, family in a bright hall
on a spring morning; a last collective
of story and memory, the classroom doors
closed behind you.
This is the moment at the end of waiting
you standing and singing together once more,
the wall of windows, trees and light.
Look at how real it all seems suddenly,
everything so vivid and so clear.
It’s late light
on a dark flock of birds,
and when they turned away
the sun came all on them
and their wings were broad and white
and they shone separately.
What summary can we make
for those impatient for a moral?
Things change? We grow wings?
You leave with our love, even our envy,
the unfixed future, the pattern-less sky
to fill with your own clear lines.
This is not a morning for conclusions.
You are moving on, the signs are good:
the ivy is in glossy leaf,
ti-tree in its fine white flower,
Now throw those glass doors open.