via Daily Prompt: Reservation

and inspired by the January Visual Prompt

My mind, calmer and stronger now than last night, made for itself some imperious rules, prohibiting under deadly penalties all weak retrospect of happiness past; commanding a patient journeying through the wilderness of the present…
― Charlotte Brontë, Villette

With reservations, I look back
on things I might have done
or am unable to undo, knowing
what they say about hindsight
and preferring the forward view.

Journeying through the present
wastelands is an uphill climb,
toward the dim and dusky wilds
of an unknowable future,
watching the road, looking for signs.

As for good memories, nostalgia,
dusting off the rosy retrospect,
the faded sepia travel photos,
second-hand happiness
is best applied to poetry.

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