I watched as the convening mist
rose twisting through the trees;
It changed gray shapes and silhouettes,
and shattered inner ease.

I closed my eyes and bowed my head
at shadows dark and gaunt.
Poor choices often follow us;
a lifetime they can haunt.

The murk and shadows preyed on me
though decades long had passed;
but even now some thoughts remained,
mistakes I had amassed.

A noiseless voice spoke quietly
as wraiths of haze danced by,
of vague outlines of memories,
but few to make me cry.

Then suddenly I wasn’t alone;
the moonlight peered through haze.
The truth shutdown my sense of gloom
for there was much to praise.

The merging shadows uttered not,
bad thoughts they did allay.
Good luck and fortune had followed me;
mistakes drifted away.

I could now see the foolishness
of dwelling on things past.
Fortune so oft a fleeting thing;
my eyes opened at last.

There comes a time to recognize
a life that owes no debt.
Banish thoughts of no consequence,
the shadows of regret.



Phil S. Rogers is a sixth generation Vermonter, age 72, now retired, and living in Texas. He served in the United States Air Force and had a career in real estate and banking.  He previously published Everlasting Glory, a historical work that tells the story of each of the men from Vermont that was awarded the Congressional Medal Of Honor during the Civil War. 

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3 Responses

  1. Tonia Kalouria

    Enjoyed this timely message very much. With all the
    Covid isolation, too-much-me-time, it has, indeed, led to
    an abundance of “woulda- coulda- shoulda. A lovely
    reminder to count our blessings instead.
    “Banish thoughts of no consequence” is truly a line to live by.

  2. Paul Freeman

    A thoughtful and poignant piece. I think as we get older we all find the strength to forgive ourselves our past sins. But can we truly forgive our real whoppers. The jury’s out on that one for me.

    Thanks for the read, Phil.


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