He slid down the last of the trail and he asked of me,
'Do you see what you expected?'
And this was a question breaking loose, rolling free.
Out from under stones and scattered
Into thoughts of what the cruel fates would now decree.
He settled back in the dust and made his face into pain,
'Did you see only what you believed?'
And I looked down to where blood had left its stain
The charge of what's given, what's received
Announcing the closing dirge on this long campaign.
'No,' I said,'you are not what I expected to see.'
Young as hope and true as love was my enemy,
'The shields were burnished bright as a sun-splashed sea,
And drowning courage hath brought me to this calamity.
Expectation has so proved the death of me.'
He spoke to say, 'You cannot war against the man you were,
And I cannot slay the man I shall one day become,
Our enemy is expectation flung backward and fore,
The memories you choose and the tracks I would run.
Stayer of dreams, sower of regrets, all that we are.'