PACKING FOR THE FUTURE: INSTRUCTIONS

Lorna Crozier

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Take the thickest socks.

Wherever you're going

you'll have to walk.

 

There may be water.

There may be stones.

There may be high places

you cannot go without

the hope socks bring you,

the way they hold you

to the earth.

 

At least one pair must be new,

must be blue as a wish

hand-knit by your mother

in her sleep.

 

*

 

Take a leather satchel,

a velvet bag and an old tin box -

a salamander painted on the lid.

 

This is to carry that small thing

you cannot leave. Perhaps the key

you've kept though it doesn't fit

any lock you know,

the photograph that keeps you sane,

a ball of string to lead you out

though you can't walk back

into that light.

 

In your bag leave room for sadness,

leave room for another language.

 

There may be doors nailed shut.

There may be painted windows.

There may be signs that warn you

to be gone. Take the dream

you've been having since

you were a child, the one

with open fields and the wind

sounding.

 

*

 

Mistrust no one who offers you

water from a well, a songbird's feather,

something that's been mended twice.

Always travel lighter

than the heart.

 "Packing for the Future: Instructions" from THE BLUE HOUR OF THE DAY: SELECTED
POEMS by Lorna Crozier, Copyright © 2007 Lorna Crozier. Reprinted by permission of McClelland
& Stewart, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited.
 
All rights reserved. Any third party use of this material, outside of this publication, is prohibited. Interested parties
must apply directly to Penguin Random House Canada Limited for permission