barren

It is a tiresome trek,
This lonesome path,
Lined with haunting questions
Of shade and whisper,
Where to dwell
Is to be damned
Yesterday is lost
And tomorrow never comes.
Stumbling through the wreckage,
I remember when all was not ashen
But fields of light now reduced to scattered pools;
Oases throughout the journey
Whose warmth feeds fading memories.

Upon that lined path,
Eroded by forgotten feet,
Pitted with hesitations,
I dare to stop and wonder,
In these wearying hours,
Bathed in gasps of twilight,
What have I sought
Lo these many years?
And my heart mournfully cries
Release!
From responsibility.
From fear.
From want and need.
A thunderous crack
Muted by distance
Is all that marks my epiphany.

Stark winds press me onwards,
Ever onwards
Towards a valley,
Once unseen,
Whose chalky walls
Offer shelter
From the barren plains.
And as I descend,
I linger and look back from whence I came
The heights eclipsing that past horizon,
Obscuring dim memories of dawn.
Glancing ahead only instills vertigo
With the depths that yet await.
So I drink deeply of my bitterness
The bile coursing through me
Leaving numbness in its wake.
Hardening my heart,
I venture into that depression.
The gray periphery encroaches
Suffocating what light remains.
Oh how blessed is the ashen dark
As I pass into blackness.

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