Dreaming of Mountains

for Sir Edmund Hillary

Though the intrepid climber
Has retired to lowland life,
Still he dreams of mountains every night.

Who will free him from the bondage of
     A love for altitudes?

Restlessly he sleeps, restlessly he wishes for
     The scope and range of younger days.

By night he hears the wind play over
     Himalayan passes...

He sees the prayer flags flutter in the breeze,
He feels the crunch of snow beneath his boots.

Coursing slowly through his veins,
     The sluggish blood of age returns
In dream to oxygen-poor peaks,
     Thinning and increasing in its pace.

Climbing, always climbing without haste,
He journeys to the sky his soul requires.

     His only wish is to reduce
     The distance to the stars.

©2016 Michael Fraley

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