Pres(ci)ence

upon my return
i find that most things
have remained the same

familiar places have
not changed much
though i do expect
to turn the corner
to find that i am
suddenly again faced
with the ocean

some things are
different though

other flowers have
begun to bloom
colors that were not
here before have
suddenly appeared

near my daily walk
a playground has
been torn down
graffiti stained
jungle gym cut
from its pressure
treated wood roots
and carted away

nothing remains
except a toppled
bench where lovers
kissed and mothers
watched their
children play

i continue
to move through
the day
as if i am
of two worlds
the present reality
and the one of
sand and sea
i so recently
left behind

it is so
easy to slip back
into the stress
and anxiety of
this place
and forget
to move slow
yield to the others
on the road
with me

still
if i put this shell
of my life to my ear
and listen closely
i can almost hear
the sound of waves
pounding against
a distant shore

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