POEM: A Thoreau Reading — Owed To Awe That Sucks

Some say
That he sucked
The marrow from
And resin ate
Down to my bones
Blood brothers
In what is
Not a race
To judge knot
In won slice of
Or as-certain fine
From lowly metaphor
And in due coarse
Don’t wait
For found
In dried bones

This poem is a tip of the hat to Henry David and the value of raw and overflowing passions over disembodied philosophizing and asceticism.  ’s famous mission statement for his in the woods is recorded in his book, Walden: Or, Life in the Woods, as follows:

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms.”

Life is to be delved into, dived into, not dispassionately observed from the sidelines.  The passions embodied in following our bliss are great teachers of both the extravagantly abundant and radically simple facets of life.  The greater sin in life is to be bound to material and finery at the expense of an uncertain coarseness and careening zest for life.  Mistakes will be made, but few greater than resignation or trepidation yielding that which is narrow rather than marrow.  May you suck at life and on the marrow find life sturdier.

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