To Life by Jeanie Greensfelder

My favorite poems connect personal experiences to the universal, and that is just what Jeanie Greensfelder does in this one.


Photo by Şahin Yeşilyaprak on Unsplash

Jeanie Greensfelder

To Life

On this odyssey called life,
a new me rises daily
and takes over. Each
thinks she is the real deal.

No going back. I’ve tried.
I can only imagine my gurgling self,
one day able to walk, then run, read,
and wonder. Memories present clues:

Age six, my two friends, sisters, couldn’t cross
our street. I could. The big sister yelled at me
so, I hit the little sister and ran across the street.
I learned about guilt and loneliness.

Without guidance, I made my own rules:
I had to be perfect or suffer.
The world had to be perfect. If only
I had devised a better plan.

Seeking help, I took Applied Psychology,
not knowing the course was about business:
I learned restaurants with more than one
cook and waitress have staff problems.

I didn’t know how to get along with myself
or with others. My journals recount ongoing angst.
Over the years, I understood more about my mind,
yet still puzzle on the mystery of change:

how the I of me travelled from child to adult,
who I was yesterday, who I am today,
and who will show up tomorrow
on this odyssey called life.


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