To Peace
I walk on a path through childhood places,
the children laughing and playing ball,
but I cannot stay and play with them.
The path leads through city blocks
where people work and study books,
studying life but not living it.
I walk away from suffocating traffic,
follow the path to a hillside
and climb upwards over the city.
Gazing down I see far off
the shimmering surface of Cayuga Lake
and amongst the white rooftops,
the peaceful groves of trees,
I see my home.

In memories I climb another mountain,
with you beside me,
on wild staghorn fern covered slopes,
amongst the aromatic eucalyptus,
paper-bark trees, the smooth bamboos.
We're alone high above Honolulu,
the crowded beaches of Waikiki,
the congested roads and freeways
that tunnel through this mountain range.
Here in the cool whispers of wind
that caress your long hair, here on beds
of soft pine needles and eucalyptus leaves,
we lie holding each other tight
gazing forever into each other's eyes,
lost in long kisses that lead into night.
The darkness hides the trail home.
But with you by my side, your hand in mine,
love is the light that guides us:
We cannot get lost.
The pine needles underfoot,
step by step, we walk silently home.

Now here, far away and decades since,
I am still walking silently home,
but without your love
and your heart encircling mine.
The dreams still haunt me,
the memories possess my moments of peace,
raise armies, calling them to war.
Every moment seems a fight,
between past and present,
threatening to murder my future...

To live I must find peace,
the peace of the roads not taken,
the peace of the words not said,
the peace of the deeds not done.
The peace of accepting this life,
the mistakes I made.
At peace with loss
at peace with ghosts
at peace with the absence
of those suddenly gone,
At peace with the looking
and not finding.
The peace of a child's laughter,
the memory of your smile,
your loving glance,
That no one can take away,
no one can reach:
the serene peace of a past happiness
that is part of us forever,
that cannot be changed.