Endlessly parading,

the centuries are marching on review

before the timeless present;

and endlessly they will continue marching, marching,

marching on into the future.

Yet of this awesome endlessness

a precious portion falls to me.


Space stretches far beyond horizons

in a vastness dwarfing the imagination.

yet of this expanse,

a bit of dust that answers to my name

is mine exclusively.


No one else can fill this time and space.

It is potential for a newness,

a uniqueness,

a never-happened-before-and-never-to-happen-again-ness.

And if I fail

it will vanish in the limbo of oblivion—

forever uncreated, unlamented, unappreciated.


Let me, then,

Have the courage of my convictions,

The mettle of my meanings,

The valor of my values.

Let me feel honored

By the creating presence in me,

And yield to its wondrous workings.

Let me be impelled from within

And become a new creation.


(This poem is printed with permission from the family of Carl J. Nelson. It is from his book Eternity can wait.)