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Side Tracked

I have been side-tracked.

You have seen me.

I was watching my feet as I walked. You stood and watched me.

You could see the tension in my shoulders. You could tell that my hands were fists even though they were buried deep-down in my coat pockets.

You wondered what the weight was that I carried on my shoulders. You wondered if the realisation of my own mortality was bearing down on me. You wondered if something I had hoped for, longed for, had passed me by.

You wondered if I had become side tracked; lost my way; spent too many years thinking about living and not enough time being a part of life.

There was something familiar about the way I walked, you decided. The word ‘downtrodden’ entered your mind.

This word, downtrodden, made you think of your own life. You had had dreams once, dreams of a career and of being creative. When you were young you had felt as if you were in a mighty ocean of opportunities.

What happened to your dreams, you wondered. You looked at me walking past, you looked inside yourself as you stood there, and you found that your ocean of opportunity had been replaced by a sea of longing.

You have been side-tracked.

I have seen you.

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  • TheVarcii
    TheVarciiover 3 years ago

    Excellent write Matthew. Very appropriate for these times. So many people are feeling like this.

  • Thanks very much Brian. Yes, I think that many people feel a sense of disenchantment with the modern age. We have so much, and yet some of us still feel as if something is missing. But we are not alone.

    – Matthew Dalton

  • ian osborne
    ian osborneover 3 years ago

    Great reflective, perceptive work Matthew. Well constructed and thought-provoking.

  • Hi Ian. Thanks for the encouragement. I appreciate you taking the time to read this.

    – Matthew Dalton

  • Jeannette Sheehy
    Jeannette Sheehyover 3 years ago

    very poignant. it really touched me on a deep level. I think most creative people who are stuck doing something else non-creative for a living have felt like this at some point? At the risk of being personal…is this you?

  • Thanks Jeannette. It’s great to see you on RedBubble.

    I have become interested in the second-person form. I wrote the beginning and ending of this story and then worked my way from one to the other. But yes, I have certainly felt this way.

    Hope all is well with you and that you are getting time to create.

    – Matthew Dalton

  • claireh
    clairehabout 3 years ago

    Wow, very thought provoking Matthew. The sentiments your writing expresses are very familiar to me. I’ve pondered it a lot…this thing called growing older…we humans have a tendency to lose ourselves in “life”…sidetracked. I’m glad I reacquainted myself with me last year, things have progressed much better ever since.

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