Tuesday, March 21, 2006

"Cold night at end of winter"     [lyric]


The self is not a constant
      it changes with the wind
it's here a lingering instant
      the poem is its friend

the self is not a constant
      it varies with the time
it lingers for an instant
      a transient paradigm

the self is not a constant
      it's terminal like the night
amid its fleeting instant
      it casts a moonlike light



Composed 20 March, arriving home late from local bus

2 Comments:

Blogger Alakaline said...

David, loved the 2nd stanza esp. In fact kabir and some sufi saints have said a lot about the transience of all that is contained in the self and which is the self..
-Al

Thu Mar 23, 10:05:00 PM PST  
Blogger david raphael israel said...

Thanks Alaka --
yes, the thoughts here are certainly not "original" per se (antecedents include much from the Buddha, as well as from Kabir and others of his ilk, yes; or to cite still one more from the myriads, there's Shankaracharya's memorable "Like a dewdrop on a lotus leaf").

But any such truism can be mulled over and reframed, turned about, turned around, hung from rafters, reflected off mirrors, bounced off walls, skipped over lakes, intoned, questioned, and in other ways pondered & taken apart & reformed, etc., before we perhaps begin to absorb a bit of 'em. ;-)
(So these verses perchance are a small piece of such a thinking-through.)

Or on the other hand, they may spring up as naturally as grass from the ground, fall like leaves from the trees, prove ubiquitous as the air, and form themselves in words as normally as a world appears before the eyes, or appear in thought as unsurprisingly as a sound is discerned by the ears.

Still, they may, on yet another hand, seem implausible, strange, troubling, ironic, and hard to get a handle on.

Anyway & withal: a fresh framing (as it seemed) of these simple/complex thoughts & notions struck me on the particular night.

cheers,
d.i.

Fri Mar 24, 08:37:00 PM PST  

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