I never made it to Olongapo

I never made it to Olongapo.
Had orders once, but didn’t understand
the meanings of the words. Instead I traded
for a Norfolk fast boat, long and black.
Other places I might have tried but didn’t –
names and addresses I seldom remember,
just fragrances of sweat and tastes of tears –
memories of what futures might have been.
My claims to fame were straits I navigated,
deals I negotiated on the fly,
troubles I avoided, not from knowing,
oh no, not from knowledge, but from respect
for the unknown. My lights burn dimmer now –
I barely recognize those tracings from the past.

2 thoughts on “I never made it to Olongapo

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