POEM: As The Tao Plunges

As The Plunges

I seek boundless horizons
Beyond what can be billed
What you can have
Fore walls
No bull
A retainer for passable living
A cistern to dammed dreams
Reining upon you
Only knot to be brothered with
As some look out
Your winnows
Punctuating all that you can
A fort
Out to sea
A veritable glass menagerie
To one’s peers
Pipe dreams
Leading too
A fire place
Your hanker chief
Scant comfort you
As most daze
Facing a cold hearth
An exhausting flue
And ashen remains
Yet why carp it
When you can have
Your Parkay® floors
For butter or worse
As you slip
Pitter pottering a bout
Your cast
Dangerously close to kiln
For my ran some
I seek the earth’s bounty
To rise up
To meet my feat
And when I fall
I shall look up
Sharing a ceiling with the stars
No guise worrying
A bout some prostrate iffy canopy
For without
You might lose your marble’s
Stony ledges looking good
As the plunges
And to the great abyss plumb it
To one’s own depth

This poem explores the relationship between the commonplace cubicles of the , both literally and figuratively, and the great abyss singing its siren song, daring skilled sailors to plumb it, risking one’s own depth.  A , well, lived, requires effort.  Beyond that, I’m not a big fan of .  This is particularly true in America, pawning itself off as the pinnacle of Western civilization.  You’d think that the timeless questions of humanity had been answered once and for all, and all that you had to do is buy (and sell) one of the many great brands available.  Well, in my book, brands are for cattle.  Plus, my preference for vegetarianism leaves me with little use for cattle — or sheep — or chickens.  These days, people expend huge amounts of energy, and cash, to dress themselves up with others’ brands, defining themselves by what they own — or what owns them — by what they consume — or by what consumes them!  The fact that many people will pay extra for essentially another’s brand shows the vacuousness of our own unique lives.  Gee, at least get paid to be a walking billboard.  And as I like to say, if you are going to sell yourself, at least get a good price!  It seems that living vicariously through someone else’s , identity, celebrity, or sheer familiarity in pop , commands more value than undamming our own dreams.

The is a masterful critique of the .  The in Chinese and plays, perfectly synchronously with itself, a balancing role in contrast to with its focus on set , set roles, and the centrality of .  Unfortunately, Western civilization suffers from the worst of both worlds.  America lacks both the and of the , and suffers a sociopathy, even , that holds in check.  Perhaps America can harness its restlessness to throw off the forces of greed and undue focus on necessity.  The Tao offers a vision of the rest that gives rise to all.  The Tao is more than serendipitously short.  The Tao is concise, poetic, and sparse on words precisely because reality and relentlessly emerging cannot be reduced to any imperial plan assuring a particular outcome.  It surely cannot be reduced to a brand!  The awesome of ’s bounty and the openness of human invites us, even begs us, into continual re-birth and re-.  All of groans for our freedom and participation in its bounty.  So, if it should seem that your life is ever in the toil it, be mindful as the Tao plunges, bypassing technological fixes and vexations, your dammed dreams may very well be unplugged.

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