What Still Matters by Johanna Ely

What Still Matters

The water stain
on the dining room table
still remains,
a perfect circle left
from the vase of irises
I received on my fortieth birthday.
That, and the table,
lined and scratched
like an old man’s face,
remind me
there is a beauty to aging.
All these millions of years,
water tumbling over riverbeds,
the ragged rocks thin and clean,
smoothed into glass stones,
scarab green,
or wind howling in the crevices
of ocean cliffs,
how it erodes and softens them,
dunes of bone white sand, rising.
All that once came
kicking and screaming
into this nascent world,
weakened to a whisper-
the veneer chipped,
worn to a thin gold band,
takes on its own polished patina.
While a voice low, far away,
murmurs what still matters-
how the purple tongued
irises turned
a deeper indigo
in the waning light.

by Johanna Ely

Editor’s Note: The lovely imagery in this poem reminds us all to stop and take a moment to just breathe.

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