Neither Here nor There on New Year’s Eve

Outside, it is New Year's Eve:
  Fireworks, noisemakers, parties.
    People await the magic moment.
Inside, I am outside time,
  listening to the winter lights.

I am not at Pittsburgh's 2001 First Night,
  wandering downtown, trying to choose
    which performances interest me the most.
I am in Cincinnati.  Mary's sister Eleanor
  is working 11 to 7 at the hospital. Her son
    just left for the airport.  Suzanne 
      is at an all-night party with college friends.
Mary and I are here with Eleanor's husband.
  Kurt doesn't talk much.  We  discuss 
    model trains.  We don't discuss guns; we've nothing
      new to say on that subject.
Mostly Kurt sits and drinks coffee.

Buddhism teaches that only the present
  is real; the past is gone and the future
    is unknowable. 
For me, on this last night of 2000, 
the present is the least real.  In here,
  I am somewhere else, somewhere
    between the years.

This past year was difficult, troubled.  Politics - 
  The whole year I worked and now I feel 
    as if my house had been broken into and robbed.
Medical - I have balance problems, literally.
		I need a new year.
The coming year is uncertain.  Job, career ...
  Is it too late to figure out 
    What I'm going to be when I grow up?
       Can I still make a mark?

In here, Kurt turns on the TV.  A hundred 
  young people crowd Times Square to watch
    The ball drop.
I will go to bed early,
  wake up early,
    and watch the new year dawn.
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