It did seem to me whatever happened
         had been going to happen, so why then
         make excuses? The wires on the walls
         held paintings afloat or ran wet with
         water from the pipes. The moldings
         all detached as the damage was done.
         In a world of fishermen and plumbers
         I was lost among the throngs of plain
         folk, and I had nothing, it seemed, to say.
         I gathered together whatever I could
         salvage from the menagerie, my own
         pets and friends included, and we stole
         away together, seeing what we could of the world.

         We were on the seas somewhere when
         the rain finally stopped, and I saw the sun
         on the horizon—something I hadn’t seen
         in years. I was longing, as were all my
         companions, for home. To see the small
         stores and the lines on the streets again,
         to go back the way poets speak of going
         back, and to have things happen around
         me instead of because of me. The activist
         life was wearing thin on me, and I was
         growing nervous and cold. When we finally
         reached land we faced the journey back. I
         had never known exhaustion like the one I knew then.

         Oh I didn’t care about the water damage
         back at home. I had lived worse lives already.
         The systems were up and running in some
         semblance of the way things were, and
         I was not about to complain. Everyone
         adjusted very quickly to old ways. I sewed
         and plastered and did what I could in terms
         of restoration, and when I was done I clearly
         recognized my identity in this life. How
         had I lost my place in my first go at it? Pain
         can be the strongest influence in any life
         or love. And I am so easily distracted I was not surprised.

         I was not afraid to admit my mistakes. I
         had so many to own up to though I worried
         about the time. People stood by me, and I
         thanked them for such gestures. The animals
         near me seemed to lose their innate senses
         for storms and danger, so I took to protecting
         them myself. How could I abandon them
         after such travels? At once everything
         seemed simple and explained. The walls
         looked terrible again, and I felt familiar pangs
         of desiring flight, but instead I stayed put. I
         wasn’t about to get going again, not now, no not ever.

         <      >