On Liberty

When I consider how society
     Affects the colours we subscribe to life,
     Paring vision like a razor-sharp knife,
I wonder any one of us is free
To form his own ideas of what will be.
     When every day is lived amid such strife
     One has no chance, short of the afterlife,
To rise above a vain anxiety.
But when the inner man is left alone
     To see all things again with infant eyes
         Untinted by the strictures of his past,
The smallest leaf can speak with ringing tone,
     Conveying wisdom through the simple guise
         Of seeming small yet touching all that's vast.

©2016 Michael Fraley

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