A View to Eternity
A familiar tender spot, the old wound
Nags me. A pain unresponsive to any
Anodyne except that which is also so likely to
Aggravate it to a more unbearable
Degree. It feels so much better at first
And then, inevitably, the elixir turns to
Poison, only deepening the ache.
I know this, and yet I cannot stop.
Each time, I am hopeful and expectant,
Thinking, oh, a chance–this could be it.
This could be the cure that makes the pain
Abate forever– but it doesn’t take long.
Presently, before I even have the full effect,
The new opium deserts my veins, satisfying only itself.
In the dream, the disfigured woman trudges up the old stone steps,
Discharge from her oozing sores leaving slick puddles
Into which I unavoidably step as I follow her up the stairs.
I see we are approaching an overlook–a window–
In the ancient wall the eroding stairs ascend.
The worn down woman doesn’t hesitate, but simply
Steps off the ledge of the window.
“It will never be any different” she says, as
She uses the last of her strength to mount
The ledge of the overlook
And without stopping even to admire
The view, she simply steps off
Into oblivion, finally, surely, doubtlessly
Finding the elusive cure.