I guess somewhere along the way
I thought I wouldn’t be me
anymore.
I’d be changed, different
someone else
I never knew.

It seems to me foolishness
at 40
to go backpacking through a land
I do now know about
have only heard of its wonders.

Forty,
not quite old
no longer young.

I wonder if that is how Israel felt
leaving the desert
skin sucked dry
rumors filling their ears.
I suppose marching around Jericho
seemed foolish at forty.
What am I doing,
some must have wondered,
but they marched on.

Was there a moment of silence
when the walls fell down
in a crumbling heap?

Foolishness, this marching
and fanfare of trumpets
but walls came down.

Foolishness, this backpacking
with no languageā€”at forty.
I wonder,
what walls will come tumbling
down?

 

25 October 1995