I don’t want to fade into the pastel sunset
            in Vero Beach with Barry Manilow
            playing softly in the background.

I don’t want to look like Dick Clark, Ronald Reagan
            or even Liz Taylor.

I don’t want to walk my two miles every day
            at the mall with all the usual suspects
            in the Golden Age Club.

I don’t want to circle the wagons and get all
            my ducks and IRA’s in a row to defend me
            against the ravages of uncertainty.

I don’t want to spend my whole life erecting
            a Star Wars Defensive Shield to protect me
            from death.
No, I want to let my whole body age and weather
            like an old tobacco barn — showing the blistering
            summer heat of loving, and the gray winters
            of grief in every board.

I want to load my pen, paper and poems
            into a rucksack and spend the day
            tramping the open roads.

I want to fan my tiny spark of existence into a blazing
            campfire under the blind night sky.

I want never to rage against the dying of the light,
            but instead, become a dancer in the darkness.

I want to live every day with my arms outstretched
            and nailed to the grain of experience, dying
            each morning into the innocence of dawn.