Hemispheres - Poem by Diane Hine
corpus-callosum adjoins sheared
surfaces of mirrored brain hemispheres.
Reason and imagination need both halves in gear.
Language, emotion and reason are not commandeered
by one side or the other, a popular notion for some years.
But they do have unique roles and either one may domineer
the other, depending on need. The left, is a careful engineer,
responsible for precisely focussed concentration. Volunteering
a broader perspective, the right assumes the role of a mutineer
when danger threatens. It is our vigilant lookout, our summiteer,
keeping us in touch with the rest of the world. To judge insincere
from sincere, to out-wit opponents, to empathize. The frontiers
of the intangible and technical, of the metaphoric and austere,
are attended by specialists. The right can interpret a sneer,
evaluate body-language and distinguish jests from jeers.
The left, can study intricacies of crafts, and persevere.
Linked by corpus-callosum, they signal and interfere.
Is it any wonder we oftimes sense an overseer?
A thousand notions bid, and no auctioneer.
Democracy, two parties of peers.
unmoored from traditional piers.
Adrift in hundreds of conflicting ideas.
Buffeted by contradictory instincts we career.
Between plain selfishness and selflessness we veer.
Tallying up our pains and pleasures, meticulous cashiers.
Seeking meaning and purpose, like shopping for souvenirs.
Yet these are not rubies, waiting to be discovered and revered,
but individual creations which must be shaped by each one here.
The universe is deterministic, barring random fluctuations smear,
and [gene] will goads and impels, with prods of promise and fear.
Satisfaction has not evolved to be a permanent state, but merely
temporary shelter, in a life-long progression, necessarily severe.
Our body parts are mapped in left, head to toes, front and rear,
yet damage to right can make leftside body seem to disappear.
Robots can be made which touch, smell, taste, see and hear,
yet how should we respond, if they sometime shed a tear.
The right collects puzzles and the left grows weary
of penetrating their opacity. Glimpses of sheer
clarity banish pessimism and give cheer.
Two halves form a lump held dear.
Our very own theory
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