"Love after love"

The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

Derek Walcott

I have been reading Derek Walcott for many years, but this still startled me with its wisdom and eloquence. It's clearly a poem that had to lived before it could be put into words. If we can only take Walcott's advice, each of us can have the full life that only self-acceptance allows.

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