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Poem: Otherwise, Get Off The Mountain

Otherwise, Get Off The Mountain
by Jonathan Kraft

Written 1. Feb. 2005

Climbing behind the climbers before me, on the mountain we all must conquer, I found myself asking,
“How much longer?”
“How much farther?”
“Am I there yet?”

And I came to an old 4-pillar structure, covering a small rectangular altar, and on the altar was a man, calmly sitting cross-legged.

“How much longer? How much further?” I asked him.
“Am I there yet?”

He replied in turn with a question:
“Are you?”

Confused, I implored him.
“How much further must I go?”

He replied in turn with another question.
“How much further must you go?”

Frustrated, I stood and raised my voice, and shouted,
“How much longer must I go?”

He replied with yet another question.
“How much longer do you have to go?”

Exasperated, I began to leave, when he said,
“You must go as far as you are willing to go, for as long as you can go, until you get there, wherever there is. Go until you arrive.

“But you, my friend, must learn and decide something right now. You must decide it right this instant.”

“Okay,” I said.

“You must learn to enjoy climbing. Otherwise, get off the mountain!”

He then jostled me with a stick and refused to say another word.

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