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The Road Not Taken

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Below is the poem entitled The Road Not Taken which was written by poet Merton Lee. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a mellow wood.
Rugged paths and uphill roads further ahead.
Dimly or half-hidden, like the wood itself.
Try to glimpse ahead.
But it is beyond disappearing eyes.
Part of my earthly tests.
Part of the riddle:
'Wherever I go, there I am.'

When young, no matter which road I took,
seeking prizes or meeting setbacks,
reversed, chose another road, repeated the cycle,
half-consciously, I carried that heavy Log
of desires, prides, fears, jealousies.

I realized, my feet didn't get to choose.
Rather, that Log came alive,
feeding on my prides and anxieties,
growing into a huge, shadowy Creature.
Soon it pulled me to walk that kind of road
in a secular way in a secular world.

I saw many choosing highways to the cities,
looking for branded cars, gold watches, silvery mansions.
Some became frustrated when dreams proved elusive.
Some took big risks in speculations -
stocks, derivatives, currencies.
Their volatile prices burdened some with debts.
Even forcing some to take a sad fall
from the silvery windows of high-rise buildings
onto shattered pieces of glass.

The illusions cracked.
When pulled along by the shadowy Creature,
the mindset I wore or hid within,
the roads I trod in the world of red dust,
bent towards the wrong direction.
Regrets sooner or later found me.

May I return to the poets of the past.
The blue sky and green hills are saying:
"That Creature survives on self-focused desires,
porous, transparent, short-lived.'
If I quietly watch the inner circus,
they undress as flashes of mental energy.
Each flash spurts around for a few seconds
before disappearing.
Each flash is like a squirrel
darting towards a hazel nut, grabbing or missing it,
quickly disappearing into thick branches.
Or a hyperactive puppy chasing a bone of desire,
biting it, running away to hide,
waiting for the next bone to appear.

Glimpsing their true nature,
I stand a better chance
to withstand being pulled along.
Slowly, I realize how I mistook
that shadowy Creature to be solid,
how it came from my yearning for acceptance.
In understanding it,
the untamed grove within has a change of season.

Perhaps in this way contentment comes …
Watching a sunrise, listening to a stream,
placing a robin back to its nest,
extending a helping hand to the needy,
praying during a sunset,
seeing the gifts of a night sky.

Someday we affirm the insights of Frederick Robertson
and Saint Paul: 'On earth we have nothing to do with success
or results, only being true to God. Defeated when doing right,
beaten when doing good, are victories in His eyes.
For neither heights nor depths nor anything else
in all creation can separate us from His love.'

Someday when we glimpse these miracles,
we begin to see which earthly road
is more harmonious with the Spirit.
Especially during our last day on earth
when we close our eyes, breathe our last
and take the one road to the Timeless. 

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  1. Date: 11/17/2014 7:25:00 AM
    Excellent thoughts flowing through verse!!!Ct

    Lee Avatar Merton Lee
    Date: 11/17/2014 5:13:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks, your poems are very finely written. Well done. will be reading more of your poems. cheers Merton Lee
  1. Date: 12/26/2013 2:53:00 AM
    Nice write. I enjoyed the read.

  1. Date: 10/10/2013 9:01:00 PM
    Merton, this are the kinds of thoughts we all have, yes? Good write, my friend. Allan

    Lee Avatar Merton Lee
    Date: 10/11/2013 1:15:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks, Allan, much appreciated. I also posted some comments on your poem, which is very well written. Have a great week ahead. Merton
  1. Date: 9/16/2013 9:11:00 AM
    Hi Merton, love the inspiration you share.... I think one of my writes were inspired by Mr Frost... I don't know what happen to that poem... anyways~~~ You did well... and I love your take on his ...xox~Linda

    Lee Avatar Merton Lee
    Date: 9/16/2013 6:47:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks, Linda, for the kind and encouraging comments. Much appreciated. On my part, I love reading and enjoying your poems. I have been reading and re-reading many of your poems in the past few weeks. They are very inspiring, fresh and memorable. Will continue to read them. Have a great week ahead. Regards, Merton
  1. Date: 9/11/2013 9:20:00 AM
    - A very well written poem, Merton ! - oxox // Anne-Lise :)

    Lee Avatar Merton Lee
    Date: 9/11/2013 6:31:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks for the kind comments. have a great week. Regards, Merton
  1. Date: 9/10/2013 1:04:00 PM
    Great take on this! So true about our baggage defeating us and leaving only one path! I like the uplifting ending! Molly

    Lee Avatar Merton Lee
    Date: 9/11/2013 4:51:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks, Molly, on my part, I like and really enjoy all your poems. They are very memorable and I read them again and again. have a great week. Merton.