It is that time of year, when students graduate and new jobs start and as such things happen here, around and to me (still working on that job bit), I’ve spent some time thinking about what I take with me as I prepare to move. Knowledge, more books than I came with, new friendships, a network of people I know and care about, a better sense of who I am and who I want to be, a nice latin diploma. And I look around and think of what I cannot take with me. My professors, all of the books in the library, my friends–all of them, a few books it’s not worth packing, the nice chinese place down the street. And I wonder what I’ll grow to love in the unknown city where my unknown job waits. And I think, “Don’t cling.”

As I prepare to leave
I remind myself
“Do not cling too close
to this space, these people.”
For they will cling to you
in the unexpected turns of phrase,
in the dozen small gestures,
each borrowed from another,
in the smile, perpetually unexplainable.
Do not cling, I say,
for they will follow
in remembered anecdote and wisdom;
in heart and soul they too will come.
Beyond all else, I say,
“Do not cling to close,
for other hands hold surer grip.”

written 5/14/08