The atlas of fantastic places

The atlas of fantastic places
was given you at birth,
that cast from a familiar
ocean upon a strange beach,

you (with no way back)
might fruitfully explore.

Therefore, hone your
cartography; grasp your
compass. Be mindful of scale,
respectful of topography.

Know latitude, longitude,
that you might predict
where you will sweat,
where freeze, and yet

be wrong nearly as
often as right, and

frequently lost in the best
of fantastic places —
beauty so assertive
it verges on violence —

sometimes lost
in the worst:
violence so pure
it verges on beauty.

If North and South
invert, what of it?

Keep moving.

You were made
to be dazzled.



  1. Right on, dear Cate. Keep moving. A wonderfully clever poem with a great message. How wealthy the person is who finds wonder, excitement, and beauty in the new, different, and unfamiliar. -Russ

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Russ! I’m slowly, slowly learning that there’s often something amazing around the bend, even if it’s not what we had in mind. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, YES – “be wrong nearly as / often as right” – why do we get so uptight when we discover we’ve misjudged, miscalculated? Far better if we could giggle our way forward. [Then again, maybe immobilized in angst serves to help us reorient? Part of the overall scheme of life? Looking back, I can vouch that it does happen every so often …]

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Giggling forward is much better! Being immobilized in any figurative place, at least for long, is contrary to the basic geography of our lives, it seems. The older I get, the more I think movement is key. As no less a sage than Dory (“Finding Nemo”) counsels: Just keep swimming. 🙂


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