Stay/Leave

​Do I walk, do I run?

Do I gallop with the wind,

Feel it tangle in my hair?

Feel the dirt between flying feet,

Feel the gravel cut tiny nicks 

Into ready skin? 

Feel like the waves, untamed, not held

Back by anything but my own

Wild, wayward will?
(But will you keep up with me?)



Do I saunter, do I dawdle?

Do I stroll leisurely along quiet paths,

Feel a lazy breeze keep pace with calm breaths,

Feel the lingering serenity 

Of starry nights and moonlit skies?

Feel dewdrops cling

To parched skin; silken blades,

Tangling between my toes.

Feel the safety of a canopy 

Of a thousand twinkling lights, 

Guiding me home?
(But will you leave me behind?)



Do I whirl into your world,

With thunder and lightning

Crackling across dark skies 

All noise and quicksilver,

With howling wind and restless rain

Beating relentlessly against

Misted window-panes?

Or do I traipse in,

With the quiet drizzle in the night

Gentle showers and soft breezes,

All damp coolness and moist earth

Crystal drops clinging to

Emerald leaves and gossamer webs?
(Will you welcome me in?)



Do I linger, do I wait,

Like the bitterness of coffee

That stays on scalded tongues,

Like the last bit of yellow light

That stains a sunset,

Refusing to let the dark 

Steal it away?

Or do I flit away,

Like the brief, but magical

Dusks and twilights,

All blushing hues and shy tints

Creeping across the sky’s canvas

Dancing with hesitant feet

Before melting into the light

Or the black of the night? 
Do I dance with leaping flame,

Beautiful, dangerous, destructive;

Or burn with mellow candles,

Soft, golden, keeping silent vigil

Through the darkest of nights?

Do I stay, waiting for you,

Like the shadow by your side

Patient, uncomplaining,

Seldom noticed, never appreciated;

Or do I slip away,

Rushing tide swirling away,

Slipping between your toes,

Kissing you goodbye?

(Will you miss me if I’m gone?)


Gautami. 

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