i sometimes find myself
envious of those who have
gone on grand adventures
who travel long distance
who do the extravagant
and the extraordinary

but in the back of my mind
at the pit of my stomach

i see my mother
coming home from her
factory job in the dark
hours which fall between
night and dawn

i see my father
working much the same
midnight hours,
steadily rising
from assemblyline to

i see, now, with the sight
of one who has spent many
long hours gazing far into
the horizon for moments of the

the people i most often
turn to as heroes
are the ones who slept
in the bedroom across the
hall from mine

whose caring and effort
extended to generations
before them and after them

who continue to work
long hours, each living for
more than their own achievement
or satisfaction or amusement

i can only hope
that my life and my efforts
are a fraction as steadfast
and extraordinary.