Better

It is better to be here
rather than anywhere else,
better to watch the wind
gusting through the trees

from behind glass, better
to drowse on the wooden bench
indoors in the chapel open
to all travelers than out

in the park where the water
has frozen in the fountain—
And it is better to find
a lucky penny on the floor

outside the washroom
than under the rim
of the urinal, better
to fill your water

bottle at the tap
than buy expensive
bottled— Better
to shun the noise

of a thousand
chattering voices
for a quiet hour in
an alcove, better

to lie on a woven mat
smelling of wood-smoke
than on an old mattress
that has not been

certified without fleas—
And I could think of any
number of things it would
be better to be

than other kinds
of things, but you
would agree it is better
when sleep overtakes you,

not sorrow; when joy
is a seed the wind could loft
into the air and you could
think it possible to follow—

 

In response to Via Negativa: Ash Wednesday.

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