may be a serious case of *mego*

(my eyes glaze over) for the reader, sorry!



as i promised myself, i'm reading 

the bodhidharma. every page is interesting, 


and each is to western minds as american football 

must be those of the east, on some level 


it's comprehensible. on the intended level, i think not.

a phrase: the mind's capacity is limitless,


is self-evident, and true of all cultures. another: 

neither life nor death can restrain this mind,


is less border-neutral. death does have dominion

here in the west, though it becomes complicated quickly


when the notion of afterlife enters the conversation,

or any notion of eternity, and that's the point,


there is no east or west, we live on a sphere,

we're all one people that happen to arrive


at variations of the same conclusions by different paths.

east or west, live by your tenets, reject dogma,


be open to new ideas, be equally skeptical,

know nothing is knowable. i’m learning the language. 




ah, but what does this mean for a tuesday morning

as we get ready for work, or a lazy sunday afternoon—


how does it affect us? does it effect us, or is it rhetoric?

marketa is happy enough to listen as i air my thoughts.


she, though, is a musician, and musicians think

in terms mathematical, in terms of chords, of scales,


of harmonies and melodies, of relationships. music,

like thought, has cultural tendencies that cross borders.


music, like the sphere, has no beginning or end.

bring a song to close on its familiar tonic note


and we’re happy, end on the dissonant minor 7 flat 5

and the world doesn't fall apart, it may be


nails-on-a-chalkboard, but it isn't fatal. the fires of hades, 

or the come-on-in prospect of pearly gates, or the dharma,


aren't the foundation of music—music affords a different path. 

the questions that eastern and western thought seek to answer 


are addressed through notes, through the union

of logic and emotion. it is the language she understands.




colin isn't particularly musical, he doesn't see the world

through notes. he is well-read. he knows the dharma


and heeds it little. he works. his language is sweat-labor.

he keeps his distance from such questions as why


after the loss of georgann he knows there is no why.

he sees the pursuit of faith or dharma as esoteric,


or simply useless. he and i adhere to the notion of 

nobody knows what’s coming or why. i, though, 


like the explorations. i like reading this new-to-me book,

though the chances of it being more than a thin volume 


of self-help is small. i want recipes, a grassy hill 

on a blue sky day, a job to pay the rent, a warm body


near me,  a friend to talk with, a path to jog along.

i don't speak the language of thought for thought's sake,


be it east or west, buddha or winnie-the-pooh, but i like

wondering, and positing, and joining the conversation. 







Poetry by one trick pony The PoetBay support member heart!
Read 122 times
Written on 2020-10-18 at 23:16

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Bibek The PoetBay support member heart!
I like how you show the readers three different perspectives (otp, marketa, and colin's) in the poem, each one adding a separate layer to the meaning. The last couplet, I guess, sums up the speaker's (or yours) philosophy on life. Beautiful work indeed. :)