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The Road by Dana Gioia

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

The Road
by Dana Gioia

He sometimes felt that he had missed his life
By being far too busy looking for it.
Searching the distance, he often turned to find
That he had passed some milestone unaware,
And someone else was walking next to him,
First friends, then lovers, now children and a wife.
They were good company–generous, kind,
But equally bewildered to be there.

He noticed then that no one chose the way—
All seemed to drift by some collective will.
The path grew easier with each passing day,
Since it was worn and mostly sloped downhill.
The road ahead seemed hazy in the gloom.
Where was it he had meant to go, and with whom?

“The Road” by Dana Gioia from 99 Poems: New and Selected. © Graywolf Press, 2016.

Dana Gioia, a writer whom I have love and appreciated for a long time is my age--we were born in the same year. This poignant poem rings so true to me about old age and it's haziness. Is there a map we can trust? Why has the topography changed?
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