Poem: A Lesson in Letting Go

A Lesson in Letting Go

I remember taking the picture. The light was low
and everything was moving. Looking closer, I realize
I too, was not quite still.

I wonder sometimes, what the photograph would look like
had the train finished braking; had the passengers held still
for the briefest perfect moment

for it is in stillness we see clearest.
There is a clarity in it. A clearness only achieved
in stillness.

And yet, we avoid it, It makes us nervous.
Nothing in motion. Silence.
Eyes too still, on us. We are afraid

those eyes are seeing too much
or that we are too little
or have said something scandalous and painful.

It is a problem sometimes. My stillness.
It makes people nervous, or so I am told.
It leaves them to their imagination and trauma

to imagine my thoughts
and often causes them to babble a bit more
than they would normally.

Which suits me just fine.
There is a clarity in it.

All the same, there is something in this picture I like,
a sense of movement, an energy that defies
a desire to see and know. A lesson in letting go.

About This poem

I came to letting go and trusting the universe, trusting God, not needing each detail or why, about 15 years ago. I think it was a good lesson, but man now and again I need reminders. Sometimes, my own poems are my reminders.

The picture was taken at Penn Station in New York City.


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