"Courage," she said
a currency that can't be exchanged
the battery that starts
We aim our courage like a firehose
so it doesn't spray all over
in drunken snakesquirm
splatter against walls
and come back to torment us.
So we get signals--
lightning handwriting burned on the
detour signs and free tickets to the next adventure.
When you know it must be done
and that's all there
is to say
When integrity wakes you up before dawn
with a vision you can't ignore
when your life belongs somewhere
even when you're free
and independent of rulers
when you're called and there's no way out
and you glide into
you know you've got a soul
that's still alive.
That I've always recognized in you--
when the wind shook the branches
and sent the leaves flying in terror,
I watched your spine like a treetrunk,
I knew you were a power to be reckoned with.
I know your future will be as big as you are,
as solid as your
or that low tone in your voice
when you've smelled a rat
and you're aiming your sights.
you sculpt away everything
that isn't you,
whatever can't make a longdistance voyage
close enough to home to smell the feast.
I'm close enough to watch you aim your courage
at the only life you have
and the destiny
that won't let you get away.
Richard Geer, American poet and astrologer, copyright 1997.