William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

To Have and Have Not

The world owes me nothing. It gives me everything. I can claim that I have what I have through my own effort, but it simply isn’t so. I have what I have because life is in me and I am in life. I have awareness and breath. I need nothing else. And when they leave this body, they will take that need with them.

The sudden arrival of about a dozen juncos — sudden to me, whose attention was captured by them at the big front window as they landed and immediately began hopping and pecking about in the wet grass and muddy dahlia bed, where only a few minutes ago I had picked up several fir branches that had blown over the house during the storm. Sudden — but for them the usual course of affairs, conducted at a bird’s pace.

Forty degrees, cloudy, fresh, breezy, a light sprinkle. I was out for about half an hour in short sleeves, my feet bare in sandals. I came in feeling so good I wondered why I’d come in at all.

I’m aware of what I have. I’m not aware of what I don’t have. If I were, I’d have not having. And if I had not having, I might not be aware of what I have without having it, which is my present state. I have nothing. Everything has me.

December 13, 2021. Afternoon.


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Categories: Everything and Nothing, New Poems & Pieces

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