How did I arrive at the riverbank?

I drove.
But how did I drive, I left.

But why did I leave,

I said goodbye.
And why did I say goodbye,

well goodbyes like most things must be done.

Life happens at the closing of the door.

The emptying of the coat rack.
The cold silence in the hearth.

The family gathering of dust on the blinds.

And how else are we to march out our beliefs but to leave a place empty.

A silence is scarred by the reality of our own deep breaths.

That where we are is here and life cannot be mettled out anywhere else.

--

--

I like small towns like these
Where churches silently compete for street corners
and their steeples race one another into the sky.
I like small towns like these, where night comes right down to the edge and folds itself neatly.
Where, ferns speak in hushed tones about the wind.
Where, birds roost in the famished brick of old buildings.
Where, the sound of the ice cream truck a block away is still magical.
Where, after a long life, people will lay themselves down beside the bones of their ancestors and sleep until the world has ended.

--

--

To be people is simple enough,
Lift your lunch pail.
Whisper good words to one another.
Keep the left hand a secret from the right.
Do not find nature foreign.
Love what is plain.
Be gentle to the pain that is given.
Crave being hungry.
Suspect that God exists
and know that the demons are daily.
Gather in solitude, stray from loneliness.
Give others the victory, but share the defeat
And long for your lover even after the wedding bells have settled.

--

--

Every now and then
you go backwards in reality.
Not to revisit the hard memory, no.
The past will not be persuaded by the politics of our own mind.
What you were in 04', you were.
The domesticated were domesticated.
The unhinged were given away to themselves.

When you go backwards in reality
you perceive what you saw differently.
What does the street corner say now?
Are the weeds loved by anything?
The shape of your life then tells no new stories.
In leaving it behind we may know where we are going.
Of such grace we are all victims.

--

--

Stefon Napier

Stefon Napier

144 Followers

Stefon Napier is a unknown poet specializing in short prose form. He occasionally writes about American Christianity and is a growing follower of Jesus.