Those whom we love now soon we will have to be leaving;
Why then let their changing moods be a cause for grieving?

Millions of times we have suffered separation;
Time to begin the next stage’s preparation.

When the leader orders us to break camp all must obey,
He will not listen to, This is a pleasant spot, let us stay.

May as well talk to a deaf man, he just doesn’t hear you—
He’s single-minded and has journey’s end only in view.

Yet he cannot do enough for us: from camp-down to camp-breaking
He goes the rounds while we sleep, watching over us till our waking.

And all day on the march he goes ahead of us, his keen eyes
Searching the horizon, scanning the ridges for surprise.

In the face of his love what are a fellow-traveller’s smiles or frowns?
The stars continue through the night what the sun began—all of our count-downs.


An original and unsentimental reminder of our necessary bondage to change and mutability. Life is all about moving on. The journey is the essential, not the pleasant dwelling places. A neat treatment of the Master as scout and guide the one who goes before and protects us with his wisdom of experience. The journey and the arrival are what matter not our incidental griefs and joys, attachments and losses. Time itself, measured by sun by day and stars by night only has real significance in that it is a countdown to our final annihilation, in Him.

Ah if we could only be so calm and detached. Perhaps with trust in the scout it is possible.

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