January 6, 2012
By Anonymous

“You can’t go to the same river twice.” -Heraclitus

The floodgates of childhood memories open,
as I return to the old river of what was once my backyard.
Memories rush to my head like water roaring through rapids,
eroding the periphery of my perspective, exposing the vitality of my core.
My warm reminiscence is short lived however,
as I notice the soul of my childhood has been swept down stream.

While the river remains unaffected,
the plants have been torn up, replaced and neglected,
The shrubs outlining the lawn once seemed elaborate and mighty,
liked castle walls offering protection for the helpless citizens inside,
however they now appear weak and unkempt.
Rose bushes once vivid with color have been overtaken by dull yellow lantana.
Although I know the river wouldn’t have the same appeal it did all those years ago,
I have always envisioned our reconnection to be a collective appraisal,
a celebration of how I have matured as a person.
What I did not expect,
was the humility that accompanied the displeasure of this moment,
as years of build up and expectation are swept downstream,
never to be reclaimed.

I want to blame the new occupants,
analyze and critique their judgement for changing something so dear to me.
But instead I put my own decisions under the microscope,
to see who has really failed to live up to expectations.

The author's comments:
I was inspired to write about a quote that I found by Heraclitus, "You can't go to the same river twice." This poem has great meaning to me because it talks about living up to expectations and how life can seem so different as you age.

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