You Take It With You

that you take it with you, all of it,
even the fuzzy and forgotten parts.
It’s all there in the way you breathe
now, in the questions you never
would have thought to ask,
in the new sense by which
you navigate the world outside
and the world within.
The legacy of every moment
beats inside you—fifty, eighty,
one hundred times per minute.

[this one is dedicated to my friends Scott and Julie, who recently moved back to the US from Uganda, and to the many friends I’ve left and seen leave over the years]


  1. What a wonderfully succinct and artful way of putting it. And so very true at the same time. Thank you for encouraging me to not forget, James. Even though life wants to distract and get in the way, I can confirm and support the statement your poem makes: no matter how much time or distance there is between me and my experience, I always have it with me.

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