Leapdragon 2016 - Aron Hsiao Was Here

The ones outside  §

In the nooks and crannies,
we are quietly laboring
to make the world work.
On the outside,
we are not always visible.
At a lamplit desk,
on an open highway,
in a tiny control room
behind one-way windows—
we are generally alone,
silently doing our part
to keep the clock ticking
to keep the network dreaming
so that you can live happy lives,
productive days,
enjoy your friends
revel in your accomplishments.

From time to time we meet you,
slip into your realm,
or you into ours,
and we are dazzled by you.
Then we ride the maelstrom,
delight in a universe of smiles,
music,
dancing,
the strange embrace of social being.
We make half-hearted promises
never to leave,
never to be outside again.
The gods, however, are inscrutable,
and soon the currents carry us away,
as they were made to do.
The glow of your world
lingers in us a little longer,
but we are quickly forgotten,
as we should be.

We are those outside.

Made by the mountains to bound the world,
we create through our presence
a place for the lives of others—
to meet, to talk, to love, to live,
while we carefully man
those nooks and crannies,
do our part
to keep the clock ticking.
When you see us,
we’ll wink at you, knowing
that you appreciate our efforts
and that you are as happy and as free
as you were meant to be.
Don’t be afraid to wink, to smile back—
for us it’s a long road ahead
and a little warmth is what keeps us driving,
more or less content
along the endless, ageless route
to the horizon and beyond.