That Unknown Familiar

After Kelli Russell Agadon

by Lissa Schacher

It’s like hugging a stranger.

I know this person is much like me,

they too come from a mother’s womb, why must I be scared?


It’s like

the sandwich I bite into turns out to be filled with buttercream and bananas,

Not a bad thing, quite pleasant

but not what I thought.


One of those roads less traveled by

Unsure of what it holds and its blind walkway

I trip. That damned twist in my trail.

May the dirt I taste tickle my tastebuds, giggling a promise.


Could it be that all spontaneous situations

lead to possibility?

An outcome I never imagined, but still just as cozy.


We tend to burrow away once we stray from the path,

when it’s not what we told ourselves


That house dog turns into a doe.


I do not wish to encounter the unplanned,

it is not a familiar face.

Why would I want to say hello?

But when I meet its eye contact, there’s tranquility.


That doe continues to drink its pond water

knowing the rustle of that leaf could mean

life or death.


But as I live only through my calendar and planner,

My life becomes trapped

by its dates and orders, time suffocates my lungs.


Once we let go of our guide, once our grasp is released

can we appreciate the comfort in endless options.

The excitement,

how lovely that water tastes.



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