View From Parris

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I stand before a glass.  Opposite of it sits a man.  He looks old, but not from age, no he seems aged.  This was a man seasoned by trials and stress.  For all I know he could be my age, but he appears much, much older.  His face sags in a way you could not determine if we had been sad or not.  His eyes are a fixed look of depression.  His salt & pepper hair pairs with his will and recedes.  Here in this place he sits alone, motionless, silent.  Though a thin blanket covers his legs they still quiver.
          I just stand there staring, captivated by the heart wrenching sight before me.  Suddenly the man looks up.  I guess his glare is aimed at me, but the shadows are dark.  The man unlocks his fingers and begins to rock in an attempt to gain enough momentum to stand.  Finally he does & his knees report with objection.  In this big empty place his groans of aching bones are audible.  Slowly he steps closer to the glass, frame shaking.
          I can see him better now.  He almost looks like my father but taller.  Even though he is shriveled & weaken from time, defiantly taller.
          He places a hand on the glass dividing us.  His fingers are long and bony.  As I stare back at him I noticed a few oddities that make my heart lurch in my chest.  Do I know this man?
          His eyes are not fixed eye-to-eye with me, but his gaze burns intensely and his knees even object to the mild sway of weight, but his eyes...
          Before long he breathes a mist on the glass and writes.  "It's not too late."  With that my readily lurched heart begins to pound as though it were attempting to escape my chest and the realization finally comes to me... he is me.



2005 All rights reserved. This poem may not be used or duplicated in part or whole wihtout the express consent of Jak'ki "Parris" Johnson.


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