Peace Be Upon You, Traveler

Peace be upon you, traveler,
through night’s fevered exhale
or sun-charred road,
to lover’s threshold
or the white citadel!

Perhaps you drive through the bank at midnight
because your daughter has a cough
or to hasten morning’s commute.
But maybe you bear
as rushing blood
to foreign lands
circulating dollars
through Taipei’s tunnels
or the flowering alleys of Sao Paulo.

You did not ask my permission,
did not show your face,
real and stubbled red as Capistrano,
or smooth-chinned as the Lotus Temple,
and risk the fleeting.

You were wiser –
like rain cobbling the paths at Sarnath,
like feet smoothing the slopes of Jerusalem,
you chose eternity
and did not show your face.

That’s alright.
This, too, is just a game
of hopscotch
with G-d clapping the time.
If-you-miss-one,
that’s-o-kay,
your-life-leads
else-where
a-ny-way.

Leave.
Forget the rules
and the electric bill!

Can I really blame you
for sneaking out
when all implied authority,
though not declaring it illegal,
finds this smuggling, well,
irresponsible?

Do not fret at our parting.
Your headlamps thirst for the mile;
your ticket pulls you forward.
There is an edge even to this circle;
bless me, and traverse it.