Occasionally I drift in what might be called,
a “purposeless fog,” wondering why I’m still alive.
Not wanting to die, but neither wanting to fill the days
with distractions and diversions
just to navigate my way
from morning until night.
(A retired person’s plight!)

Sometimes I step too far away from life,
being not so much a monk,
but more a misanthropic codger,
muttering in my beard.
Then my deepest Self steps in and wakes me
to who and what I truly am;
and I am reminded of my love of life, of people,
and of a longing for community.

I’m not sure exactly what to do, and that is fine.
Not knowing is a healthy place to be,
for it keeps me from impulsive actions.
Though winter has brought me isolation,
I find my spirit moving outward, looking forward
to a spring in which a brand-new bud will open
into something unexpected, something lovely.

I’ve been changing, growing all my life
and I trust that process isn’t going to stop.
The later blossoms often bring the greatest beauty.

Author: William Martin

Taoist teacher and consultant

3 thoughts on “Purpose?”

  1. As is often so with these latest poems I so relate. Have decided to take a sabbatical starting in 2022 and i can feature myself being in exactly the place you have written here – and i look forward to the “later blossoms”. Elizabeth

    Sent from my iPhone



  2. Thank you, Bill. I don’t think it is a coincidence that at the center of your above thoughts is the word “love”.


  3. That reminds of Milton, doesn´t it? … “God doth not need
    Either man’s work or his own gifts; who best
    Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
    Is kingly. Thousands at his bidding speed
    And post o’er land and ocean without rest:
    They also serve who only stand and wait.” …

    You are my reminder of the beautiful bowing to the *divine* in each other.
    Thanks, and


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