If I am not grateful in the knowledge that I will die, and possibly suffer untold, nigh unbearable pain between now and that time, then of what worth is my gratitude for my relative good health, and for an abundance of fluffy clouds, fresh air, and sunshine? Can such conditional gratitude really be gratitude at all? And yet even that is a start, I suppose.
If I am alive in the sense that I am attentive and not living by rote, then it naturally follows that this work I do is also a living, growing, changing thing. But when I am gone, or if at some point I lapse into borrowed opinions and recycled thinking, what becomes of the work I have done? Does it go on living, or is it, until further notice, disqualified?
And what if I lose my memory and don’t know who I am, or who I was, or where I’ve been? Is it possible that I will possess the beauty and value of a fallen tree, and that I will serve to feed the forest of life and of man?
And what if I let go of this I altogether? And what if I already have?
Better Blind, Than Blind
Ask me why I so willingly
read myself blind, and I might say,
Better blind, than blind;
For never was my darkness
so very, very light.
Ask me if I’m not lonely in the absence
of color, and I might say,
I know what the colors know;
For never was my gladness
so very, very full.
Ask me if my dreams sullenly dim
and fade, and I might say,
As inevitably as yours;
For never was this life
so very, very sure.
Ask me why I blithely carry on,
and I might say,
I am the carried one;
By cloud, to grave,
I am the carried one.
Recently Banned Literature, March 19, 2014
Twelve Poems, Poets International