They’re Not The Same

There are characters and stories I’d always imagined growing old with,

Looking back on forever as formative to my being,

But while growing up changes a person and our worldly understanding,

Stories often remain undeveloped and unchanged.

There are moments in books that once thrilled or astounded me,

That were once profound, insightful, or full of mood,

And while many of those words still make me feel something,

Their meaning seems to change as often as I do.

Themes that represented the concepts I believed so perfectly

Have revealed themselves to be shallower over time,

And writers whose minds seemed so beautifully percipient

Have fallen behind perceiving the experiences of life.

It’s sad to watch something beautiful be diminished

When circumstances change how it reflects in our gaze,

And characters that fell so easily into our hearts

Transform into beings from which we’ve become estranged,

But, if there are stories we’ve grown away from

It means that we’re growing all the same,

And becoming new and better people will always alter

Our understanding of what the past means.

Sentences and ideals that mattered then can still matter

With new understanding settled into the narratives we’re making,

And the stories we’ve left behind can still inspire us

As we renew our loves and troubles into characters worth creating.