Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Lest We Forget

I read this poem today and it really just zoomed right to the core of my soul. I've thought often of this very girl and the conversations we might have together on a quiet evening. My life is very different from the one that I envisioned many years ago. I briefly toyed with the idea of being a hard-nosed corporate attorney, but I always fancied myself more of a "save the world" kind of gal. When I wasn't researching admission requirements to the Peace Corps, I planned to study Bengal tigers in India, teaching English literacy in huts during my down time. My actual life is far less exotic and I'm far less important to the world at large than I imagined. Nevertheless, I believe the girl I used to be would still be pleased with the woman I've become. The real satisfaction in life comes when we are busy fulfilling our personal mission, whatever it is, wherever it may lead. The beautiful thing is that we all have different journeys, separate paths we are meant to follow. How boring would it be if we were all exactly the same?

Lest We Forget
She came tonight as I sat alone
The girl that I used to be. . .
And she gazed at me with her earnest eye
And questioned reproachfully:

"Have you forgotten the many plans
And hopes that I had for you?
The great career, the splendid fame
All the wonderful things to do?"

"Where is the mansion of stately height
With all of its gardens rare?
The silken robes that I dreamed for you
And the jewels in your hair?"

And as she spoke, I was very sad,
For I wanted her pleased with me . . .
This slender girl from the shadowy past
The girl that I used to be.

So gently arising, I took her hand,
And guided her up the stair
Where peacefully sleeping, my babies lay
So innocent, sweet and fair.

And I told her that these are my only gems,
And precious they are to me,
That silken robe is my motherhood
Of costly simplicity.

And my mansion of stately height is love,
And the only career I know
Is serving each day in these sheltering walls
For the dear ones who come and go.

And as I spoke to my shadowy guest,
She smiled through her tears at me,
And I saw that the woman that I am now
Pleased the girl that I used to be.


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