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In Nepal,
we squint to find magic
in the dust.

This high Himalayan sun
burns with fervent religion
like the gentle monks
offer their whole lives
to the bright and searing hope
that someone will
unclench the cruel fist
on the throat of what they love.

The silver mountains
teach my earnest feet
the path
of grace and spiral stones.
Maybe I will dance
quick nimble steps
to love what is passing,
to melt into the sky.

When you think of
giving in,
look up
look up.
The unrelenting blue
that none of it will last.

The birds rise and dive
I can almost understand
some word for brother,
some taste of wings,
some kind of peace.

When I am not walking,
I grip her coarse black mane
and listen.
The clear bells
around the curve
of her brown neck
clink and tingle;
she carries me
without reservation
or apology.

We climb,
sometimes she treads
on the edge.
and wakes
the smallest avalanche,
the somersaulting of rocks
all the way
I imagine the long tumble,
the crushed bones,
the silent end.

This is trust,
she tells me
there is no hurry.

We build joy
by holding on when it matters,
by letting go when it’s time.

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