Lines of living

I love the lines on my face

that tell me I have seen and tasted.

They betray my poorly-kept secret

of laughing too hard and too often—

creased by a grief that breaks and rebuilds.

My forehead is marked by skepticism and curiosity,

guilty of surrendering to wonder and awe— repeatedly.

I am not just an image to be observed:

some sculpture of enticing form,

fit for consumption or admiration.

No, I am some wild thing,

tumbling through life.

Reckless and graceful;

scraped knees, pointed toes.

Gleefully and sumptuously laughing forward.

I have wrestled with time—

been touched by it,

fought for it.

So may it be said I danced through the world like a fool

in love with living.

Let people remark

that I have interacted with all my days,

unafraid of being changed.


more beautiful,

for weathering storms.

Awake and alive—

Stubborn, mystified—

Bearing proof of wisdom,


in the fabric of my form.

I will not grieve the passing of my days,

the weathering of my face.

Oh I bear the gifts of time

on my belly, my thighs,

my heart, my settled mind.

And at the end

I’ll rest my head,

limbs, hard-worked,

sun-spotted, spent.

Hands bearing scars and cracks,


proof I have grasped

at paintbrushes and tree branches,

lovers and cliff faces;

braced grieving shoulders,

cradled babes.

There trace my smile-lines,

they’ll silently testify,

betraying still,

of a life fully lived.

One thought on “Lines of living

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