Success, I’ve

I sometimes worry
about arriving too early,
peaking, and being well-known and wealthy
for the shallow accomplishments of my youth
and having all the quadrillions of fans
reaching out,
begging me to recite some of those lesser works
from my first raw years.

It is a fear
that has stayed with me
even as I’ve grown up and out,
well past my middle age
(that is to say,
under current projections.
I don’t much expect to live into my mid-nineties,
unless mortality is conquered
by the next sixties).

It is because of this anxiety,
I’m sure,
a paralysis I’ve found
in leaving myself no room to improve
in the eyes of the hungry world,
that has kept me achieving greater rewards.

I have no doubt
I have subconsciously limited my achievements
so that only when I am mature enough
to accept it
will I clutch all that I deserve
in my sweaty, bitter palms.

The only thing
that has ever stopped me
is me, I think.
I have to think that,
right?

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