I Envy Something Else

The light faces on the column

and the shadow turns around and around.

I look back and see the column

the shadow looks around,

trying to cover the world.


People ask

if I am envious

of the shadow

because of her length

and opportunities,

but I reject this.

I am not envious

I am proud of her,

she is connected to me

and we have a bond.


Now she is a sea

and I am a sea.

Her clouds above her

are calm and placid,

they roam

like gentle benevolent cows grazing.

My clouds are erratic;

sometimes they hide,

sometimes they shower.

Even though her sea

gets better tourist traffic,

I am not envious of that

but a different kind of envy is creeping,

like one of my cloud’s storms.


I take a skiff out on her marina

and bask under her dependable clouds.

It feels queer,

like the sun will soon disappear

and rain on my parade.

It’s nice though

to enjoy tranquility,

even if it will soon end.

I envy this tranquility.


Back to my home-world,

I am no longer

a culture-enchanted alien,

I am a native

and my pores open in the rain,

soaking it all in.


The overlords of my planet

tell me of how on their travels

they also envied

the functionality

of that blue sister-planet,

but when it came time to rule,

only modest reforms were made

in order to not upset

the balance of things.


Now she is a cactus

and I am not.

I wish I could live

that cactus life

with only the occasional mist,

but if I was a cactus,

with pretty pink flowers,

the local downpour would murder me.

So I am not that plant,

I cannot be that plant.


What good will envying the cactus

for the niceness of its biome be?

Maybe she is not even a cactus

and the fodder of my envy,

is a polite façade.

Do I,

like many,

only envy a finite dream?

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