The Earth and All Its Flowers

for Stephen Hawking

When at last he had awakened
From the dream of being, Stephen knew
The limits of his powers. The earth

And all its flowers could not
Hold him any longer—he was meant
To wander through the stars. And yet,

The very earth he struggled to transcend
Was what he turned to, time and time again,
To seek refreshment and the joy

That comes from confirmation, from living life
With every ounce of passion in the marrow—
His heartbeat led him to his life.


©2016 Michael Fraley




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