Half There or Half Here?

Halfway to nowhere,

moving slowly toward stasis–

enlightened or stuck?


Would Buddha in dilemma

disappear the muddy road?


Does the way of the crossways

that my crossed way crosses weigh

me down as I cross myself,

or cut across to open

new ways forward out of time?


Is the present moment free

of past regrets and future


or is it the product of

their sordid union?


In my tracks I stop

and try to track my stops,

my lurches forward,

and my lapses back.


The end is near,

so very near,

the beginning

that progress seems

like only not going

too far backward

all at once.


Vive la holding steady,

tracing circles

in the gravel

of my zen garden

to dull the knife.


Copyright 2017

T. Allen Culpepper


Yes, I’m Going There

“No upcoming destinations,”

my cellphone tells me, without

being asked, as if I had high

expectations that I am now

being prompted to lower,

to accept without protestation

this prognosis of stagnation,

of futureless stasis or movement

merely in pointless circles,

of restless ghostly wandering.

The power of suggestion

is strong, but still I will resist

for now, admitting that my

path might be hard to map,

that I might sometimes veer

slightly off the grid, gripped

by anxiety and indecision,

but I do have destinations,

even if I haven’t determined

them yet, and the phone

has a power switch that,

at least for now,

I can still control.


Copyright 2016

T. Allen Culpepper