In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Forever Young.” If there were a real Fountain of Youth, would you drink the water?

I have been drinking and bathing in the fountain of youth every day for fourteen years.  The first post I ever wrote for NaPoWriMo, over three years ago, was about this topic; and since my blog was brand new and only three people read it, I’m going to post it again today. Audrey, okcforgottenman and Ann, do you remember this one?

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Web of Night

We have been talking online for hours
and, as usual, lost track of time.
Now, after his good-bye,
it would be easier to go to bed
than to act on his reminder
that there should be hot water
in my hot tub tonight,
pumped in earlier from the volcanic depths,
left to cool all day.

I am living in sub-tropical Mexico
where things like volcanoes are everyday things.
I drink the volcano.
I swim and soak in it.
I absorb its heat,
draw from its power,
grow stronger.

This is the fountain of youth, I’ve often said.
Too long away from it, I start to grow creaky and old––
reversing those effects only by coming home again
to lie in its steaming bath.

I look up from it now
at a night sky unlike any other––
only the major stars distinct, like light seen through
irregularly perforated steel. The stars standing out individually,
between them the remarkable floss of clouds stretched
sparse as angel hair on a Christmas tree
to reveal the ornaments
between.

No one else awake in this morning hour
so early that it is really still the night before.

2 AM. Neither a dog’s bark nor a burro’s bray.
No harsh staccato though the cool night air
of air brakes of trucks
too wide for the two-lane carretera.
down below.

Alone in my world.

The clouds, while I’ve been thinking blind,
have obscured the stars
behind a thicker web of cotton wool.

I think of love so far away,
wishing it nearer but feeling it close
as the keyboard in the room behind me.
There are many of us
caught in this Web of internet romance.
Here we need not fear
the loss of a love
that is a part of an addiction
to the mystery of absence
yet words so close
they are almost
but not quite
touch.

13 thoughts on “Don’t Drink the Water: Web of Night

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