(at the Revolutionary War Cemetery)
The calm after the storm,
The clarity after reflection
The acceptance of unchangeable things
Like winter followed by spring.
Peace, in the face of war
Satisfaction, without more
The acceptance of frustrating things
Hard hearts, heads, truths.
Of this demanding demeanor
Francis did reassure
Irresistible, immovable stones
Are best left alone.
But wisdom to know the difference
Between terminal and temporary
Between aging and lack of condition
Between religion and superstition
Somewhere a song is playing
I barely can hear the tune
An anthem about a wholeness
Past understanding, more than just new.
A quiet quick resignation
That God know much better than I
How long to spin out life’s thread
A time for birth, and a time to die.
I see a star at its rising,
An orange moon just going down,
I count myself blessed just to see it
Though my father’s in the ground.
Far more than a sort of ceasing
Serenity is about releasing
Persons into his hands
Futures into his plans.
I hear a quiet whisper
Within my heart of hearts
And leave here with assurance
Of fresh fellowship, fresh starts.
Ashes to ashes, dust to dust
Even men of iron will rust
And our metal will be tested
Does it read—‘in God we trust’?
BW3 Jan 24, 2009 (Grafton, Vermont)