The Once and Future Me
Jerrold Kronenfeld
Copyrighted 2017

The Me who were …
The Me who is …
The many Me yet to be …

If , as an earlier poet said,
“The child is father of the man”
How many patriarchs will die
To make me who I am.

An unbounded continuum of discrete Mes
A chain metamorphosing from parent/child to child/parent
A transient conduit from vaguely remembered pasts to unanticipated futures
All bounded and linked to past and future Me

All but the first, a single-cell mixture of two physical ancestors.
All but the last, a terminated Me with no successor but death.

From first to last a series of stages defining all of Me.
The embryonic Me, senseless and purposeless but for eating and dividing
A fetus developing hearing and feeling the outside world through the walls of the protective womb about me
A child dependent upon others while learning the skills of independence.
An adult, outwardly at the peak of self while inwardly seeking a new womb in which to find surety and safety
A senior on a downhill slope trying to understand, with diminishing capabilities, what will follow the Me chain.

But my Mes have limited vision remembering some of our past ancestors,barely perceiving the possible existence of our futures.
We observe ourselves changing
Unsure if we see the cosmic maelstrom rushing past our centered selves
Or our untethered selves falling through an unchanging, eternal universe.

Me, first with waxing senses and selves and then with waning awareness, are born and die at a breakneck pace never really perceiving their place in the evolving I.

A single Me,
Fathers Sons,
Mothers Daughters,
Parents and children,
A single me.
All of a unity.

The Me who were …
The Me who is …
The many Me yet to be …