Spring in the Sandstone Winter

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Octopus’ Garden

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Octopus’ Garden

Words are strung on a million strings,
crotcheted nets, wrapped in themselves,
dictionaries, in which
each many-stranded knot,
tapestries into unending differences,
but nowhere can you find the meaning of a single

word.

We cast these nets,
poor fishers of meanings that we are,
but never catch;
the meaning-fishes swim right past,
for they are wild
and always moving,
only sometimes are they there,
when the net is cast,
and where.

We cannot see beneath the surface,
glitter-blinded as we are by ripples of fashion
and the breaking and the foaming
as the swells of self-assertion crash upon each other
and by the endless plastic bobbing jetsam dance
of annunciations, myths and dogmas.

Who will tell us when to cast the net and where?

The Golden Rule

Truth and Consequences.

If we were to choose a rule of life,
Through the veil of ignorance
Before our birth,
To govern all our days,
Would we choose a Kantian rule,
And make it a golden one?

If we so chose,
(Unknowing of our life’s endowment,
The colour of our blood,
The height or depth at which we stood,
Or the goodness of our fortune),
Would we bet the same amount
On every runner?

Or is this question upside down?
Should we begin in the middle of things,
Knowing all our particular perversities,
blessings, blindnesses
And bent, bowed and stumbling lusts?

If we so chose,
Marred as we are at best
By the normal wounds and sores
Of everyday experience,
Still cringing as we do from scarce remembered blows,
What would move us to place our life’s wager
On winner takes all?

Only hate:
Self hate,
If we see ourselves as losing.
And universal malice
If we are sure we’ll win;
But if we are moved by love,
We’ll have a dollar on every runner
And come home, all, as one.

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