Paulelmo's Blog

Young man up on a mountain (Part 2) …and why does he have to be so young

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Part 2: and why does he have to be so young?

Why does he have to be a young man?
He has to be a young man
because we are no longer young,
but we once were,
and we know its advantages when it comes to mountains.
We think of an old man up on a mountain,
and we think that he’s probably been there long enough,
and it’s about time he comes back off.
Lord knows we don’t wanna see nobody break a hip.
We told the damned fool to take a cell phone,
but when did he ever listen to anybody?

An old man does come back off a mountain,
while a young man comes down a mountain;
he does so cautiously, walking more horizontally than vertically,
while the young man just rages,
much speed ahead and damn the obstacles;
a scratched face or a sprained wrist are
small prices to pay if they give him cause
to tell a good story.

The old man watches as he flies past,
more serious concerns than scrapes and sprains,
carefully off the mountain,
which he once went down,
having already told all the stories he needs to tell
except for those he tells to the mountain.

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