I Do Not Live In The Past

I don’t live in the past,
But I visit it often,
Through the music of my youth;
Through memories
That have no copyright protection:
Through phrases that have been passed down
To the current generation;
Through images on television
And the trains of thought
That are an invitation to time travel.

I do not live in the past,
But I visit it often,
In conversations on how things were;
Through the revisionist musings
Of nostalgic mental promenades
Through the archives of my life.
I search for answers to present
Day scenarios.
I search for patterns and trends
That will enable me to support or defend
A stance I am contemplating.
I stand with a hand full of puzzle pieces,
Wondering where to place them.
I search for my ancestors
With the nerve to face them,
To explain what I’ve done with my life.

I do not live in the past,
But I visit it often,
To hear kind words spoken to me
When I accomplished little things;
For encouragement and nourishment,
For compliments and smiles
That levitated my spirit
Before my consecutive string
Of happy times was broken.

I sit in the old familiar chairs;
Pose again for the photographs
That are now in the picture albums;
Create déjà vu moments
From the basic ingredients.
I hold the ones I love.
I tell them I love them.
I speak the promises
Which I will remember,
While sampling friendships,
As fine chocolates
Or homemade bread.

I live in the present.
I travel in the current day,
The current moment
And the current year of our Lord;
But, occasionally, I take long walks
As I visit my old stomping grounds,
The familiar surroundings.
I sort through issues
That are rooted in my past.
I experience the joy, peace, forgiveness
And pain from previous encounters.
I sift enthusiastically through the chest
Of childhood and adult memorabilia,
But, I always face the reality
That I could never stay there,
For I am a resident of the present.

I do not live in the past,
But, I will visit it often.
It brings me pleasure and perspective;
To see the environments and remind myself
That I am blessed and should be thankful,
To be a recipient of God’s loving and saving grace.

Copyright © 2001 Orlando Ceaser

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