Poem: A Paradoxical Epiphany

A lakeside photo was intentionally
displayed upside down,
and it took forever for
me to come to terms
with my feeling of
unreality.

The muted reflection
established my Truth
of the world at that
moment, while I
struggled to accept
the clear and sharp
presentation of
existence upside down.

I thought of the paradox,
momentarily,
and suddenly realized
what Plato must have meant.

I Wish I Could Believe (#poem #NaPoWriMo)

man holding cross
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

The prompt for day 15 is to write a dramatic dialogue. I think I failed, but here it is, anyway.

I wish I could believe in God.

It’s a free country. Believe what you want.

I can’t believe something just because I want it to be true.

I do it all the time. I believe my wife loves me.

You mean you pretend she loves you.

Fake it till you make it, baby.

But that isn’t belief.

Who are you to say what I believe?

But you implied you don’t believe it.

Yeah, well? It’s a free country.

What does that have to do with it? I can’t believe something unless I’m convinced it’s true.

Who’s stopping you?

Reality.

You know what reality is?

Not for certain, but I try to believe in it.

So you choose what you believe.

Based on evidence.

Choose different evidence.

Like when you ignore the affectionate texts your wife gets from Purchasing Control Centre?

Exactly.

I believe in God because I see good stuff?

That’s what real believers say.

And the bad stuff?

That’s the Devil in it.

And the Devil is more powerful than God.

Seems so today.

Other Kinds of Hicks, Bill

I saw a documentary where comedian Bill Hicks described how a heckler once complained to him that he didn’t go to comedy clubs to think. Bill said, “Well, where do you go to think? I’ll meet you there.”

Bill was from Houston, like me, and it seemed to frustrate him that the one place people didn’t go to think about the things he wanted them to think about was Houston. He would play sold out theatres in the UK only to return home to rant at an empty room to a smattering of drunks who didn’t even know his name.

I’d say Houston crowds never liked the local sons, but they sure enough turned out for ZZ Top. Those boys could easily sell-out the Summit three nights in a row. Heck, they could probably sell it out for a month. Bill Hicks tried to show us that everything we know about the world might be wrong—probably is wrong. ZZ Top taught us that many women have legs they enjoy seeing. So different goals and different success rates. When ZZ Top sang about legs, you really believed they meant it. When Bill Hicks flew into a blind rage, you really wanted to get out of the room.

Bill was probably right about everything, though. I mean, you know advertising really does cause a lot of problems, though I don’t know how many marketers killed themselves just because Bill told them to. When he flew into one of his rages, screaming at people to kill themselves, the audience would laugh at first, thinking it was a sort of Sam Kinison kind of thing, but Bill’s screaming never resolved into any kind of punch line. You’d be just as likely to cry as to laugh.

And sometimes he would cry, too. I mean, he was really moved beyond despair by the events at Waco. You might not agree with Branch Davidians, but Bill said he saw ATF setting a bunch of people on fire, which is hard to watch, you know, and you might be moved by it. Bill really was. It’s like when you realise the people in charge might not have your best interest at heart.

Disgusted by most things of the earth, Bill sought higher answers. It isn’t possible to talk directly to the cosmos for most people, so Bill did what many before him did—he turned for help to psychotropic substances. I don’t know whether it made him any wiser, but maybe it gave him some comfort, and I can’t fault him for that. Maybe he knew too much—or not enough—either one seems to bring the same pain. That’s the irony really, isn’t it? People who seek answers are rarely made happier by them, but they still keep seeking them, and really, people rarely say, “I wish I’d never looked into that.”

They just get wiser. And sadder. And that makes life worth living.

 

Perception (#poem)

What if the hyperreal really isn’t real,img_3901 (1)
And the news never happened?

Our perceptions are just pixels, photons,
Bits and bytes scattered on a screen.

Gods and monsters both just
Misapprehensions of a troubled mind.

But whose mind is responsible for
The anxiety provoking representation?

Surely some eternal consciousness
Has not conspired to create in you

The illusion of evil and the construction
Of unlimited chaos battering the bulwark

Of what was once known as rational thought,
The eternal barrier against the evil of doubt.

So rest easy, troubled child, your current form
Is ephemeral and passes in an instant.