My World

Eventually now, I see the whole wide world we knew,
if we live long enough – I’m finding it’s so for me – 
contracts, all matters drawing in upon themselves,
a closing up and down to some small home-spun ball.
This will be the way for many, if not most, I think.
I saw it in my mother’s and my father’s final years.
Habitual world travelers, curious about everything,
as their health declined, they finally stayed home with TV,
then in the care facilities of day and night long sleep,
my father exactly, my mother one month short, of three years.
Although I’d made up for never traveling much at all
by doing so constantly the first three years after I retired,
up until the champion of shutting down, the pandemic,
shrunk my world with a violent body slam,
I could already see over the past decade, my world had
contracted to revolve around work and home and not much more.
With age there was less of everything that pulled me out of that routine.
Fewer dates, movies, concerts, parties, or outings of any sort,
fewer chances to congregate with friends. Fewer friends.
Sometimes I think I would have made a superior monk,
turning easily away from the world to a life of contemplation.
I wonder often if I’ll magically open up again, turn outward,
or if this is the end of the arc bending down for me?

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