Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Servitude



author's note:

Dedicated to two of my former teachers: Freddie, the street cat, and Simone, the three-legged cat.


SERVITUDE

One theory has it:
we try so hard to please cats
because cats are so hard
to please

just as gods can be...

So perhaps, we choose a cat
when we lack any better god.

But why do I need either master?--

serving this capricious life
humbles me enough...

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
dreaming steps

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Sunday, August 19, 2012

To Feel is to See, To See is to Feel



author's note:

I think we're going to have to fight to keep our nerve endings in this brave new world.

 
TO FEEL IS TO SEE, TO SEE IS TO FEEL

Having been numbed...

I only vaguely sensed
something was amiss

so at first,
I searched without knowing
I searched--I searched blindly:

tracing my fingertips
over this textured surface--

this sharp jagged canyon
with lush dust soft and deep

and so,
I began to discover
what I'd lost...

I've learned to go slowly
to keep from being cut

I've learned to go slowly
so I'll know what I'm feeling...

I've learned to go slowly
because to feel is to see
so as I gradually awaken
I must adapt to the light.

I know I'll always be
continuing this awakening--

I know there'll always be more to see...

more pain
because in feeling
there is pain...
more joy
because in feeling
there is joy...


© 2012, Michael R. Patton
searching for the new mythology

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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

High Humble



author's note:

Dedicated to all the tippity-tops out there--please accept it.

 
HIGH HUMBLE

I said: you've
traveled far
to reach St. Louie

but having come
such a long way,
in your wisdom
you said:
we all get there
sooner or later.

So then I told you:
you're the tippity-top
of the tip top

but having climbed
so many mountains
on the way,
in your wisdom
you said:
we're all possessed
of such high spirits.

What could I say then--?--

you'd crawled through
so many valleys
on your way to the tip top
on your way to St. Louie--
no compliment of mine could surmount
your wise humility.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
searching for the new mythology

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Thursday, August 09, 2012

The Good Fight




author’s note:

In my humble experience...

...if I don't fight the good fight, I may likely fight the wrong fight.

 
THE GOOD FIGHT

What did I hear
when in my running
I paused
for breath...?...

silent tears...dry tears...

someone weeping with fear

somewhere--down in the depths...

So I lowered--alarmed...down

down through the depths--

in darkness, yet glad:
I'd found the good fight--
ready to die for a life--
willing to sacrifice
for a cause--eager
to be heroic--
growing

in my resolution
ever stronger, no longer
afraid to be afraid--

down and down, in water darker
and darker, the tears no longer
silent but louder and louder...

until suddenly
the amplified sound ceased
and as I listened more closely
I sensed
a burden of fear
had been released...

From the trial of this experiment
we can deduce the laws of physics
also apply to the psyche:

because buoyancy then led me
up...up again--

I'd regained my breath

until next time...
up from those depths.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
searching for the new mythology

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Sunday, August 05, 2012

Yesterday's Gods Today



author's note:

When I neglect my dreams, I neglect myself.


YESTERDAY'S GODS TODAY

What does my dream say--?

My dream says yesterday.  Today.  Tomorrow.

Perhaps that's why people in the past
claimed dreams came from the gods.

My dreams have told me:

listen to your gods...

though they may often seem rude
or obscene...

they‘re just trying to wake you.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
picturing metaphor

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Wednesday, August 01, 2012

The Fable of the Old Man in the Tree



author’s note:

I recently discovered that the poem below is not, technically speaking, a fable.   It's closer to being a parable.

But "fable" reminds me of those Aesop fables that I enjoyed as a boy.  Whereas, "parable" reminds me of Sunday School. 

However, upon reflection, the poem does sound closer to Sunday School, than to Aesop.  Even so, I'm sticking with "fable".   I believe the poem to be accurate in all other respects.


THE FABLE OF THE OLD MAN IN THE TREE

An old man
sitting in a tree
begged me
to carry him
across the water.

But by the time
I'd reached the other side,
that burden on my back...

had vanished--!

I have made many more trips,
each time toting that same old man.
But I've stopped blaming him
for not staying put--
no one fools me as well
as I fool myself

and though I'm wiser now
I continue because
I've realized why
I acquiesce to his requests:

I'm discovering
how strong I can be--
I'm learning

how we build strength.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
new steps

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