That was quite an experience…. I just sat here and wrote a poem, which you will find in the usual poetry section below….. It is without a doubt the most fluid piece of poetry I’ve ever written, as well as the fastest…. as I note below, it flowed out in about five minutes while I was waiting for my coffee this morning. Quite cathartic, and, if I do say so myself, just a little bit off the beaten path, in comparison with most of the stuff you will see here, or anywhere else…. My beliefs may not be the most crystal clear, but they are strongly held, and not lightly dismissed, as they tend to be based solely on facts (hence the title of the poem, which speaks to the iconic line from the show… “just the facts, ma’am”….)
Now, I know the poem isn’t main stream, by any stretch of the imagination…. and, if I were to look at it, (which I seem to be doing…) it isn’t designed, or likely, to convince a lot of folks to listen to me, as it goes against the grain of about, oh, 96% of the rest of humanity, and what they believe to be true about reality. You can call me controversial, you can call me a fool, you can call me Ishmael…. just don’t call me late for dinner, or call me to proselytize, because I HATE that….
I already know that what I’ve written there won’t be appreciated by a lot of folks, unless there are a few ffolkes out there who happen to agree, or at least are willing to hold two ideas in their heads at once without imploding, or needing to believe them both.
But, I’ve decided I don’t much care anymore…. at least, not to the extent of making me keep quiet. I’ve always been hesitant to argue with religious folks, mainly because they tend to get so vehement in the defense of their dogma; I don’t like to be responsible for raising other folk’s blood pressure.
Now that I’m older, and beyond that sort of habit of avoidance, I don’t mind putting my own beliefs out there, so people can have something to talk about that will challenge their minds, instead of softening it into mush, as is the intent behind most dogma….. “Mental oatmeal’ is how I refer to dogma in my own head, because it’s chock full of delusional fiber that is a fast-acting stool softener for mental constipation, turning one’s mind right into soft crap….
“The more we are proud that the Bethlehem story is plain enough to be understood by the shepherds, and almost by the sheep, the more do we let ourselves go, in dark and gorgeous imaginative frescoes or pageants about the mystery and majesty of the Three Magian Kings.” — G. K. Chesterton, Christendom in Dublin, Ch.3
It seems that just trying to explain the poem is turning this into a mini-rant, and I’ve been trying to avoid that in the intro section, apparently without much success…. Ah well, what can I say? Ranting seems to just come naturally these days, and it certainly helps to keep the word count up…. It also seems to make the intro section grow into something more than a mere introduction each day, instead, becoming a wild growth of abundant verbiage that threatens to take over the entire blog….. and no weed-whacker in sight….
Well, you know what this means, don’t you? It means that I can no longer stretch out this section, and have to get to work… Sheesh, almost an hour, just to begin… oh well, I got a poem out of it, and even though it isn’t one that will win any literary prizes, it was enough to provide me with a bucket full of material to get started today…. I’ll take it…. Shall we Pearl?…..
From vulgar bounds with brave disorder part,
And snatch a grace beyond the reach of art.
— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Criticism, Part i, Line 152
“Yow! I want to mail a bronzed artichoke to Nicaragua!” — Zippy the Pinhead
As previously noted, we like our nonsense around here…. This one from Zippy is particularly nonsensical, and will serve nicely as a segue into a discussion of the value there is in engaging in nonsensical behavior on occasion. A lot of folks, and even some ffolkes, might think there isn’t a lot to say on the subject, but, they don’t know me, do they? Having spent much of the last two years honing that very skill, to wit: propounding at length on subjects of little meaning, I think we can turn this into quite a nice little pearl, one that will shine even in the dark…. or maybe not… Why don’t we just go ahead, and see what happens, eh?….
Now, to begin, let me point out that the concept of nonsense, by the structure of the word itself, gives us a clue as to where its value lies… it is composed of two parts, “non” a prefix indicating negative state, and “sense”, in this form meaning perception, or ordered perception, more accurately (it makes good sense….). This tells us that the word ‘nonsense’, as the direct antonym for ‘sense’, supplies the balance that the universe demands from every part of its makeup….
“As a professional humorist, I often get letters from readers who are interested in the basic nature of humor. “What kind of a sick perverted disgusting person are you,” these letters typically ask, “that you make jokes about setting fire to a goat?” … — Dave Barry, “Why Humor is Funny”
Everything in the universe exists in duality, as we have explored previously; this duality is directly related to our own set of perceptive abilities, which operate solely by noting the presence or absence of certain forms of matter, or energy manifestation (light, sound, etc….) We see because our eyes note the presence and absence of light waves. We hear the moments of sound between the moments of silence…. It all exists in duality, and that is how we perceive it, for that is what gives the universe its balance, and allows it to produce life, and matter, and all that we are a part of in this grand landscape of wonder….
But, the human mind is subtle, and recognizes the subtlety of the universe…. Thus, when we are confronted with seriousness for a long period of time, our nature demands something as balance, and we slip over into the nonsense mode in the privacy of our minds, to provide some relief from the somber nature of much of what is created by the hand of Man…. Goodness knows, after I am forced, or trapped, into listening to the prattling of fools about laws, or dogma, or some such asinine bureaucratic folderol, a bit of Zippy, or Wacko, or Pooh’s evil twin can always make me smile, and get through the boredom with greater equanimity….. or, as much as I ever can summon in those situations…..
“A little nonsense now and then,
is cherished by the wisest men.”
— Willie Wonka
Willie knew this little fact about the universe well, thanks to Roald Dahl, whom we can thank for his contribution to literature of quite a bit of nonsense, written with great style and verve, and not a little sarcasm. This little couplet springs up in my mind on many occasions when I am confronted by some piece of societal sobriety, and reminds me to take what I’m seeing or hearing with a big dose of salt, and maybe some Cholula’s hot sauce to spice it up. What the hell, it can’t hurt…. Can it? You tell me…..
“SANTA CLAUS comes down a FIRE ESCAPE wearing bright blue LEG WARMERS.. He scrubs the POPE with a mild soap or detergent for 15 minutes, starring JANE FONDA!! — Zippy the Pinhead
Before reading the following, I must ask anyone with strong religious faith to put on their thinking caps, turn off their sense of outrage, and turn up their tolerance a few notches….. It probably isn’t a justification, but as explanation, let me note that I wrote this in approximately five minutes this morning, while waiting for the coffee to finish brewing…. So, take it with a grain or two of salt, as it was created pre-consumption of life’s blood, and I can’t speak for it, other than to say it is mine…. and, as far as I can see, it’s consistent, if a bit grumpy….
Joe Friday’s lament
Life is short, and though I’m odd, they say
it really doesn’t bother me
to realize there is no God, per se.
Though other folks will disagree
and tell me I’m wrong
I won’t believe it, with naught to see.
Liars called padre tell me, have humility,
and do as the authorities say,
then fondle little boys with facility.
They also tell me to share the wealth
and give them a 10% tithe
so they don’t have get it by stealth.
So spare me the delusions, please
don’t bother with such a tale;
I’m nobody that needs such a tease.
Keep your fantasies under your hat
and out of my face;
I don’t need them, they’ll make me fat….. headed.
I started the day with oddness, so it seems appropriate to keep on the path I’ve chosen for the day…. The following pearls all dropped into my lap, so to speak, as I cruised through Smart Bee this morning…. As is my wont, I allowed my subconscious to choose which ones I should keep, and these five are what it picked…. For the life of me, I cannot see very much that ties it all together into a single idea, but, hey, I’m just the driver here…. I suppose, all in all, it could be considered another comment on oddness, or at least, learning to live in that state comfortably….
“The public will believe anything, so long as it is not founded on truth.” — Edith Sitwell
“The First Amendment does not say that there is freedom of expression provided the talk is not `dangerous’. It does not say that there is freedom of expression provided the utterance has no tendency to subvert. It does not put free speech and freedom of the press in the category of housing, sanitation, hours of work, factory conditions, and the like, and make it subject to regulation for the public good. Nor does it permit legislative restraint of freedom of expression so long as the regulation does not offend due process. All notions of regulation or restraint by government are absent from the First Amendment. For it says in words that are unambiguous, `Congress shall make no law… abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.'” — Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas, 1958
“Als das Kind noch Kind war, gab es diese Fragen: Warum bin ich mich, und warum nicht dich? Warum bin ich hier, und warum nicht dort? — Rainer Maria Rilke
(“When the child was a child, there were these questions: Why am I me, and why not you? Why am I here, and why not there?”)
“Morality is simply the attitude we adopt to people we personally dislike.” — Oscar Wilde
“Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we’re here we should dance.” — Very Smart Bee
Now, THAT is a sentiment I can get behind…. even if I have to push….
Most days here on ECR, I would, at this point, comment on the day’s work…. Today has already proved to be odd in both structure and content, so I’m not going to bother with any critique…. I’ve read it through for typos and basic sense, but can’t quite grasp any piece of it solidly enough to begin to analyze it…. but, that might just be my normal state of confusion at this point in the day.
Whichever the case may be, I’m declaring it done, as I can’t see myself trying to do it over at this point…. Just as well, I suppose…. I’m going to toss it out there and see what happens, and hope that my strangeness isn’t so strong as to drive anyone away permanently…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.