Tuesday, April 12, 2011

One, Three, Five

One stretch of road on a warm Baltimore spring day.
Tree different ways of traveling on that stretch of road.
Five things central to my life.

One stretch of road,
traveled three ways,
for five things in my life.

I never would have thought
That one stretch of road
Could yield insight
And illuminate
The meaning of life.

On a warm spring day in Baltimore,
It happened.

In the morning,
I ran the stretch of road.
Up the hill.
From Fallsway
To Cathedral
On Madison.
With a group from Back on My Feet

One central focus in my life--
my running.
Step by step
Still working
To go faster
Still working
To be stronger
Still just enjoying
The thrill
Of making it from here to there
Using all my strength
And all my drive.

The second central focus in my life--
my spiritual well-being.
Helping others.
Being in touch with God.
Turning over my will
To God's
That God's will may be done
And that it may be manifested through
My actions.

Later that morning, I drove the same stretch of road.
Taking my son
To school.

The third focus in my life--
my sons.
Their activities
Their development
Their dreams
Their hopes
Their well-being

Driving it in rush hour
Is not nearly
As fun as running
The road
At 5:30 in the morning.
When running at 5:30
You can ignore
All the pesky traffic lights
On the hill
And just enjoy
The strength
That comes from running
Up the hill.
Day after day.
Building confidence.
Building strength.
Building fortitude.
Building a spirit of teamwork

Finally, that evening,
I walked from my office
Up the road one last time
To meet my wife for dinner
Before seeing my son
Play a piece
He helped develop
At the high school
For the arts.

The fourth focus in my life--
my work.
Day by day
Learning more
Teaching others
Doing the work of an academic
To help improve the lives
Of many through public health

The fifth focus-
my wife.
Not the last point of focus
Not the least point of focus
Dinner together
Attending the concert together
Being together
As we have for more than 20 years
As we approach our 20th anniversary
As we continue to learn
To share new things
Even after
A very
Long time.

The five central points in my life
Brought into clear focus
In three trips
Using three different methods of transportation
On one stretch of road.
All five things are
And amazing
And bring good things
To me.

I don't think
The meaning of my life
Could be any clearer
Than the focus
On those five
Central aspects
Realized over three trips
Up one
Stretch of road
For me

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