Saturday, March 26, 2016

Unknown Unseen

author's note:

What a strange zoo we are.


Though being invisible is painful
I see no real reason to complain:

who among us has ever been

I would rather be
unnoticed or ignored
than gawked at
by someone in blinders
who states with confidence:
"I know who he is"

and I'd feel even more
if a distant hundred million
watched and thought
they understood me
better than I understood myself.

A hundred million might see you
a hundred million different ways
and though many of their ways
would indeed be valid...

the sum of those viewpoints
wouldn't add up
to the whole of your parts.

I respect the other person
enough to say:
"little by little, I know you better
  but the more I see
  the more I realize
  I'll never ever know
  half of who you are."

When someone closes himself
so that he can comfortably think
he knows me
my first impulse
is to open his eyes
by showing him something
from the depths of my dark well

but in the process
I might also scare myself

because from experience
(often, painful)
I've learned:

even I don't know
half of what I am.

© 2016, Michael R. Patton
dream steps: the blog

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Monday, March 21, 2016


author's note:

You're important to me.


Apparently, death is often
more important

than what we could've done or been
if not for death...

more important
than the planned Spring wedding

more important than being
a mother to that child

more important than how
the broken woman could've grown
if not for her important death...

more important than
all the creative passion
left unexpressed.

But I don't mean to diminish
our life before death--

if this life wasn't damn important
why would I have taken the pain
to be born?--

don't bother to debate me
'cause I've already decided
it's better for me to believe
I'm living something
truly important:

how could we bear the pain
if we didn't believe
the things, ideas, and activities
of our life were quite important?

On the other hand...

when an important life
seems to end too soon
I say we should accept:
death is often more important
than what we have to give.

By holding that belief
I help myself
bear the pain of loss

and whenever I remind myself
of that belief, I realize:
death may not wait
for me to roll out
all my important plans

and then the moment
becomes monumental.

Yes, I believe I have
some very important plans...

yet if I should fall
down dead tomorrow
I think I'd rest in peace--
comforted by the belief
this life was quite important.

© 2016, Michael R. Patton
Survival: the book

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Saturday, March 12, 2016

The Inevitable Surrender

author's note:

The value of a human being can
be measured by what he or
she most deeply wants.
         -- Rumi (trans. C. Barks)

To that I say: we all seem to deeply want heaven.  But how to get there--that's the problem.


Some believe
in heaven you can smoke
as many cigarettes as you wish
without any harmful side effects

but why would we crave tobacco
or any other pleasure?--
how could this velvety ice cream
match heaven's relentless love?

The best angels
of Beethoven’s nature
would be but a cicada cacophony
compared to the celestial choir

and the starry brilliance
of Van Gogh
would dim to dull
beside the eternal sun.

We wouldn't pick
cocaine's kick
over heaven's constant bliss

that is, unless...

such perfection
overwhelms us:

the flood of light
becomes much too much
soon after our arrival
and in desperation, we jump

back down to Earth.

We then try to escape
the pain of our fall
by blocking the memory
but still sense the loss
and so, pursue those things
that hint of the ecstasy:

a myriad of substitutes
we've found or invented--
many or most
actually quite fine

but even a dozen together
can’t completely satisfy.

So eventually, in desperation
we look to heaven again
then fight to lift
ourselves back up

but when (after much effort)
we again reach
that exalted state
we feel overwhelmed
just as before

and so, once more
kick ourselves out.

So many trials we must endure

we finally accept
that this Earth will never ever
be enough for us:

we must find the strength to bear
that which seems to be unbearable

we must give ourselves up

we must surrender to the inevitable.

When will I--when will I
when will I allow
the torrential light to devour
all that I’ve imagined
myself to be?

© 2016, Michael R. Patton
myth steps: the blog

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