I Am Not I

I am not I.
I am this one
Walking beside me whom I do not see,
Whom at times I manage to visit,
And at other times I forget.
The one who remains silent when I talk,
The one who forgives, sweet, when I hate,
The one who takes a walk when I am indoors,
The one who will remain standing when I die.

Juan Ramón Jiménez
Lorca and Jiménez: Selected Poems

Who am I when silence and stillness lead me deeper than the shallows of ego’s ever-chattering preoccupations? Who is the observer, the listener, the silent, steadying governor? Who is, literally, the life and the (eternal) soul of me?

This is what poetry’s for. Sustenance throughout our earthly sojourn. The life-giving, soul-rescuing luminance and creativity of the perpetually asked question between the lines. No quick sugar spike. No certain answer. (God forbid). But better, deeper. A beckoning. A mystery.

If, when all is
said and done,

I Am Not I

then perhaps,
mercy of mercies,
the Life at the silent
centre and the soul
of me is

I Am That I Am.

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