The Unknown Path


Yet again I have that sense
I’m on an unknown path,
A narrow side-track,
No longer the wide main road
My imagination
Stretched out before me,
The one already well marked
On everybody’s maps,
And knowing the way,
One travels confidently.

For achieving the ‘right kind’
Of end destination,
Is what we’ve been taught,
But the track before me now
Is neither marked on maps,
Nor well-marked itself,
As would be a well-made road,
Which cuts though nature’s forms,
But instead this track
Conforms to the landscape’s shape.

All I can do is follow
Its meandering way,
Pushing through the scrub
Around and over the path,
With little view ahead,
And for all I know,
It may not go anywhere
Of interest to me,
Or may peter out,
In some disappointing place.

But, traveling carefully,
As one must on such tracks,
Watching where I step
On the uneven surface,
Squeezing between boulders,
Climbing fallen trees,
Stepping over slippery rocks
Of narrow stony creeks,
My senses enjoy
The freshness of the moment.

Like all such bush paths and tracks
There are branching side-tracks
Some poorly defined,
All of which hold their promise,
Perhaps some pleasant view,
Perhaps some danger,
Or if made by animals,
Will wander aimlessly,
Putting one at risk
Of getting lost in the bush.

Yet, one must travel onward,
With good heart and hopeful
Of somehow finding,
A safe place to rest that night,
With something to pillow,
One’s head softly down,
And, since one will be unsure
Of one’s destination,
All one can do is
Hope for a peaceful night’s sleep.

One must make the most of this,
Instead of dwelling on
Fearful anxious thoughts
And worries for the future,
To allow oneself to
Enjoy the moment,
To smell the eucalyptus,
Wafting by on the breeze,
Delight in the flash
Of a parrot’s winging flight.

For these experiences,
Found on the path you take,
Are all that exist.
Past and the future only live
In imagination,
There is no ‘right kind’
Of future destination,
The truth is that your soul
Formed by your journey,
Is your only destiny.

The way you choose to travel
Is far more important
Than where you arrive.
It is in the traveling,
The paths you choose to take,
That character forms,
And you become ‘who you are’,
And thus in becoming
‘Who you are’, your soul’s
True destination is found

-David Champion