motion, 2

pack, unpack, repack,
roam, return, repeat

a year has passed since
i settled my collection of
plastic bins and cardboard boxes
in this place

a few months ago i pulled
my book collection out of
our cellar storage

in part to preserve their pages
from what i thought would be
a moist bay area winter

in part because i was ready
to consider that i would
be here long enough to thumb
through the old favorites and
all the should-reads

pack, unpack…

i survey my makeshift shelves
(cardboard boxes, empty milkcrates)
after a busy month of roaming
and all the books seem to be
pressing in on me

these are the ones, i told myself,
that i could not part with,
the ones that i needed to keep
within arm’s reach if i were
to spend any extended amount
of time in a place

yet i’ve left so many of them
untouched that i know that
my hypothesis was not true–
i thought that these were
the barest essentials
but really,
i need even less

the disconcerting thing
is how when you become
adept at letting things go
those you hold onto
become ever more precious

… repack,

i’ve learned that i can
only carry so much, and
circumstances have a way
of rising to meet needs
one way or another, so

it is possible to hold dear
and still hold loosely,
to hold close and also let go
of things, at least

the glory of seeing a sight
is no longer quite enough
for me, though i am not immune
to breathtaking vistas or
the delight of novelty,
and admittedly, i still
chase those, too

but if not for people, i
would not feel such a
need to journey
across the state,
across the country,
across oceans

… return, repeat

so i make my way to those
old familiar places
trace maps in search of
those precious familiar people

knowing that i cannot help
this urge to roam, and nor
can i help that i will always
find ways to hold on

here, in this room, as
i contemplate shedding
more of the things that possess me
i realize that i have
accepted this place as
a home, as a center, for
a longer while
than i ever have before

and still feel free,
as able to leave,
as ever.

One thought on “motion, 2

  1. This is exactly what’s been on my heart for a few weeks. The coming the going, the packing and letting go, the people I love being further from me and knowing it will take more to see them. <3

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