Jonathan ROBIN (22 September / London)
Brahma II Truth on Logic Seldom Grows after Ralph Waldo Emerson Brahma
Life’s curtains open but to close,
each a poor player is who struts
on stage an hour, age little shows
of infant promise, fizzles, phuts.
The dice are loaded that man throws,
grim Destiny’s unkindest cuts,
Time’s river ever onward flows,
as all slide through predestined ruts.
Life’s whys and wherefores no-one knows,
save I: its ins and outs, ifs, buts,
blind Reason never can disclose,
life’s sacred secret sweet rebuts.
For truth on logic seldom grows,
its adepts often selfish scuts,
Love’s instincts only never close
the door to peace that all else shuts.
If the surgeon thinks he cuts
or the famer thinks he sows,
Are suggestions such as these.
I am the roots of the disease,
the wheezer, the wheeze and woes.
I am the healer a-greed for fees,
the sneezer, the sneeze, the nose.
I am the deed, the cause, and cure,
all thats certain or unsure,
and I the seed, the horse manure,
wealthy sad and happy poor.
Stoic am I, and epicure,
Christian martyr, lion’s lure,
Jew, gentile, pass, yet I endure.
I am perfection, yet impure.
I am the roots which anchor trees,
sedge reeds that bend, wild wind which blows,
the ground, the grape, the leaves and lees,
both summer sun and winter snows.
I am the scarecrow and the crows,
timid squirrel gathering nuts.
The poet’s playful parodies
here finish with final-I-[t]ease!
If the red slayer think he slays,
or if the slain think he is slain,
they know not well the subtle ways
I keep, and pass, and turn again.
Far or forget to me is near;
Shadow and sunlight are the same;
The vanquished gods to me appear;
And one to me are shame and fame.
They reckon ill who leave me out;
When me they fly I am the wings;
I am the doubter and the doubt,
And I the hymn the Brahmin sings.
The strong gods pine for my abode,
And pine in vain the sacred Seven;
But thou, meek lover of the good!
Find me, and turn thy back on heaven.
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