Poem: A Quiet Man’s Answer to Tennyson

Amsterdam 3

A Quiet Man’s Answer to Tennyson

The canal rises with the tide,
water moves outward, out to sea.
Something shifts.
Boats begin to pull on their lines,
staying in place
despite their desire to allow the call of horizons
to take them away.

It is safe here, inland, with only the rise and fall
of the canal, a few feet, no more,
with only the slight pull of the water
to act as resistance.
Here, you row easily from place to place,
safe from adventure,
safe even in the small tired rowboats
that line the canals.

And yet.
Oh yes, the “and yet”, ever-present,
a constant pest.
That yearning never leaves,
even in a quiet soul like mine,
that desire to find something more than safety,
to live dangerously,
if only for a season.

About this poem. 

A quiet man’s answer to Tennyson (My fave poem ever).

The picture was taken in Amsterdam.


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