>a flickering light


what weary path is this,
made of brambles and shadows,
serpentine darkness and spirits?

I see the path is worn
and beaten down by heavy soles.
I see the hardships and sorrows,
the weight of crushing cares
and the smooth stones worn smooth
by constant pilgrimage.

I bring with me my own troubles.
They swirl about me, leaping forward,
dragging behind, pulling me left and right.

But I also carry a flickering light,
a fragile, gentle flame I carry
within my chest.

The flame is too dim
to light my way,
but it gives me warmth
for it is a beacon
that says “me too”
and replies “you too”
and connects me
to the other pilgrims
on this weary and
beautiful path.

Painting by Georges Rouault, from the Miserere series, 1914-1927

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