Monday, March 18, 2013

Treebeard, Sufi Poetry, and Brushing Your Teeth

Treebeard: "I am not altogether on anybody's side, because nobody is altogether on my side, if you understand me... And there are some things, of course, whose side I'm altogether not on; I am against them altogether." (Tolkien 2001, p.461)














I have to post this quote publicly twice a year to remind me that some times the best thing you can do is sit back and watch the river flow. Because as the Japanese proverb goes, "If you sit by the river long enough, you will see the body of your enemy float by." The Persian Sufi poets would probably say "And this, too, shall pass." Booker T and the MG's didn't exactly say it, but they opined "Time Is Tight." 


Actually, most of what passes for wisdom is canceled out by something else that also passes for wisdom. One sort of ends up at the point one started. 


Then what?


It's hard to explain to a child why they should brush their teeth. Life is long. If you walk long enough you'll come to a place where you see yourself. Then what?


You're still going to snap to attention at Walmart after hearing someone say something so ignorant and foolish you're surprised such a vile creature is even allowed to continue existing in a Universe with even the minimum standards of decency. 


Weariness has drilled down deep into my bones. And yet I wake up from excitement, not obligation, most days. I'm in love with my life. I make poetry, and I show people poetry I admire. I get away with this. 





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