“There is only one difference between the madman and me. The madman thinks he is sane. I know I am mad.” – Salvador Dalí
There is something to be said for purpose,
Is there not?
The lilac tempts the bee,
The politician seeks the voters’ approbation,
The poet pursues greatness;
After all, we want that flowers flower again,
That laws and poems be written,
That tomorrow be better than today.
Still, what if there is nothing behind this?
The promise of the grave inspires or terrifies,
But either way its promise is kept—
Can anything be more honest than mortality?
Comets streak through space mindless
Of the dreamer who looks out for their passage;
Gravity has a mind of its own and the tides
Don’t exist for the pleasure of beachgoers.
Perhaps this explains the danger of unconsummated passion:
A string of nerves plucked by those
Who are indifferent to goals and plans and purpose
Resembles a thunderbolt more than a troubadour;
It is uncontrollable, untamable, a natural phenomenon
That threatens governments, universities, churches
And those who captain the ships of humanity.
Yes, there is but one path to eternity for mortals,
And those who want it never find it.
Only by stumbling through a moonless night
Can we, the living, every once in a while
Fall into the well from which all meaning
Has always been drawn that gardens and democracies
May grow and flourish.
Sunday, July 16, 2017