The founding questions

The world is gay, the world is light

Sun’s watery ray, star-shine’s piercing bright

Life is good and life is grand

Dust motes uncaptured, time’s slipping sand

Bodies enraptured, spirits of disillusion

The dissolution of mind-numbing convention

And claustrophobic confusion.

Thoughts unimagined, ideas that grow stale

The rot of refuse resisting the new life it entails

The lake of dreams and the sky of musts,

Heaven abides by earth, earth abides by Heaven’s lusts.

Sweetness of surrender, submission to captivating control

The world is not worth it if we don’t give it our body and soul.

Empires of enlightenment, temples of trust

Glades of the unnamable into which we are thrust.

Knowledge that springs from the disparity of truth,

And sparseness of triumph in the wisdom of youth,

Knowledge that spurs the spectacular speculation

Of a world that is consumed by an insatiable nation.

Numbers and letters arranged out of order

Treading the waters of the dawn’s border

Rationalism in religion and the mystical in the bureaucratic

Deftness of vision and second sight in the attic.

Absurdity’s demeanor in each year grows leaner,

While explanations exceed the skeptic’s expectations.

Do you know what I’m saying?

Do you know how it is?

Must I speak more concretely to touch ethereality like this?

Images and notions we hold in our hearts,

Turned now against us, acupuncture’s poison darts.

Prufrock cries out, “How then shall I presume?”

T. S. Eliot himself knows the truths we exhume.

Literature steeped in mystical annihilation,

Science torn apart by logical degradation.

What is it worth, or what is it not?

Must we define in terms of what we have sought?

Or rather, should it be as I say it is ought?

The influx of thought, the modernity of words

Teaches us to follow and proceed together as herds.

How to cure this mental indigestion,

Purge myself of this not-so-subtle suggestion

That I can explain, or even better, persuade

That my presuppositions are more than that of which they are made,

That this gorging of data is meant to transform

Into something more useful, so as to leave us less forlorn,

That this feasting on facts fulfills the famine of faith

When what we actually create is something of a wraith

Subsistent on what is easily digested,

Or else forced back up just as quickly as ingested.

This spectre is said to be easily satisfied,

It says, ‘Give me the evidence; do not let it be denied!’

But what do we do when we run out of healthy matter

Or run into that not metabolized, making it even fatter.

The goal anymore is not to feed dear Siddhartha’s glut,

But respect his ascetics, his desire only for what

Can be processed by science

(‘Is that not everything?’ you say)

I don’t think I can live it is strictly this way.

Give me conundrums not so superbly explored,

Give me the arcane, wherein indelible incomprehensibility is stored.

Wisdom begins with wonder, and wisdom never ends,

Wouldn’t it make sense that certain questions this life suspends?

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