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Eleanore Lee

The Explorer Looks Back

You were my Antipodes.

Through you I traveled the wide world round.

A Magellan,

I sailed by the stars.

Lost my bearings more than once.


I saw your visions,

Dreamt your dreams.

They were mine too.

For years I wandered

Among the uncircumcised.

Through you


Without leaving home.


In distant deserts,


Steppes and long-forsaken hamlets

I sifted through dust of lost memories,

Searched through ruins of the past;

Unearthed tiny trinkets.


They'll never know how far I went:

Shipwrecked on the outer shore of bedlam;

I held you tight while the white storms howled,

Tasted blood.


You were foreign enough for me,

Adorned in an alien body,

Speaking an alien tongue.


Unsure whether you were friend or foe,

I scouted the edge of your campsites

Was grazed by hostile fire.

I was there, right at the brink,

And had a close call or two.

But in the end learned

That you are only…different.


So it may seem that I was meek,

That my path was circumscribed,

Days measured carefully by the clock and the rule.

But how to judge who's bold, who's weak?


For you were my galleon and my new world

My glass and my night sky.

Jeffrey Alfier Matin_Bleu.jpeg
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