Feeling a bittersweet, nostalgic fragility today.
Like a tortoise craning its neck
round the long bank of years,
I feel ancient of days
And grateful for my shell.
Frightened and protective yet wise
I can survey the world in all its
Infinite fury without the obligatory partaking.
For I suck myself in the silent dark,
I tuck myself away from it all in my forever night
And just breathe-
Without a single soul to have to
Justify my breath to.
I listen to the outside sounds without anyone to demand my response.
And, when I so choose,
I can poke my head out
To drink in a bit of warmth.
Only when this peace is violated
Do I feel robbed or sad.
Only when someone questions my armor or attempts to pry it open
Does the fear get realized.
Then, the curse of these long, long
Years gets long indeed.
The onslaught of old
Reawakens then.
And I am forced to remember
One cannot live entirely in one’s shell.
Sooner or later, the world expects you to greet it.
And greet it you must-by your own
accord or by force.
I’d rather choose the former,
On my own terms, in my own time.
But, all too often, the latter has rushed upon me and wrenched me from
My protective state.
So…what is to be done but to
Endure the season?
Soon enough, the world is done with
The slow and lumbering tortoise
And I can redouble my shell
To hopefully be left alone…

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