Reflections on what lies ahead are natural for any stage of life. What possibilities will the future bring? What will my life be like? Will I be fully engaged or merely a visitor? What decisions can and will I make to affect the outcome?

These musings are especially true for those of us in our senior years. How do we continue to show up? How and where do we offer our gifts, knowing that diminishing capacities may have dulled their shine?

In 1992 Mary Oliver opined on the subject, inspiring us all with the map of her chosen route.  It was a path filled with curiosity, wonder and amazement.

…when death comes/ like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering;
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything / as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common / as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth / tending as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something / precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was a bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.