If I had been born then,
in a past of unplowed prairie,
uncrossed lakes and hills,
I may have been a pioneer,
driving west in covered wagons.
Or maybe I was amaneunsis
to a dandy from the East,
recording his memoir of wild West,
while scribing my own secret thoughts
by firelight or by waning moon.
If I could be born again,
in a future hub of commerce,
port of interplanetary trade,
I would be a wanderer still, I think,
a mapper of the Milky Way.
Perhaps I’d keep electronic “books”
for a slightly roguish trader,
tracking bales of alien grain,
while writing my own “hiker’s guide”
by the light of strange new stars.
But I am fixed
in time and space
and the only journey I can make
is discovery of myself.