I’ve never done anything but dream. This, and this alone, has been the meaning of my life. My only real concern has been my inner life. FERNANDO PESSOA

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Free

Free, I cried, free at last,
As I jumped the prison ship of the past.

But, like a fool, I had no notion
I'd soon be drowning in the ocean.

8 comments:

Arija said...

That certainly resonates with me . . .

Dick said...

Yes, four lines encapsulating my experience of the illusion of personal freedom too.

am said...

Your poem is working on me like a koan. Thank you.

Jean said...

Yes, these brief words resonate with all of us. And I presume you were also thinking of all those people drowned off the coast of Italy, whose experience in aspiring to a better life also resonates with all of us.

Hildred said...

Wise warning, but will anyone pay heed?

George said...

This reminds me once again of Faulkner's observation: "The past is never dead. It's not even past." And what would we be without the past? How could we ever grow into the fullness of life if we have never known or witnessed empty lives?

The past, I think, is like a large wave propelling us forward. We can either ride the breaking crest for all its worth, or be pulled by the undertow back to dark and turbulent seas from whence we came. I guess I'm a bit more optimistic that Fitzgerald appeared to be in the last line of "The Great Gatsby": "So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks for these comments. I have now changed the last line slightly.

Jean — yes, those poor boat people. Also the prison ship in the Irish song 'The Fields of Athenry' and Coleridge's 'Rime of the Ancient Mariner' are hovering in the background.

The Solitary Walker said...

Oh, and put 'The Magus' with its existentialist ideas about freedom into the mix too...