“You are the way and the wayfarer”

has
Stayed in my heart for as long as I
Can remember. The traveler who stumbles
In warning to those behind, and in reproach
Of those gone ahead. “Teach your children well”
They say, or the “silent reproach” of those behind
Might not even survive the thin ice or live to
Tell. You can do “it [your] way”, take
“The road less travelled”, “call it another
Lonely day”, but for the sake
Of the “beauty of the way, and the goodness of
The wayfarers”, I wonder if the thronged
Thoroughfare, with its stumbling stones waiting
To be removed, doesn’t have a strong
Claim on those of us who lay such store by
The words of those who went before.

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