Does worrying about the world get you off the hook?

If you’re compassionate, does that mean

you can let your own work


If you focus on the big picture,

can you ignore the niggling details

on your desk?


What if there are hungry children?

What if there are bombs and floods

and haters and extinctions?

Really, what about the hungry children?


Are you to blame if you haven’t stopped the wars

or staunched the tides

or fed the children?


Or are you to blame if you

neglect to tell that story and sing that song?

Ask Yourself

Now is the time

to reckon with time’s


There are no endless strings

of days to spin,

no heaps of months,

no piles of years.


Someday, some child

will search your files and drawers

and wonder.

Why is this sentence unfinished?

This sweater unraveled?

This plot unresolved?


Take a bottle of cobalt glass

and toss it on a stony beach.

First the shards are sharp.

But sanded by waves and time,

they soften to sapphire nuggets.


Now is the time, if you want,

to knot the yarn

and finish the tale.

But ask yourself


What is the one thing

your time is worth?

Do that.


You can leave the unfinished



Now is the time.