New and Improved (or Not)

Since there’ve been no takers on my most recent book, Rhythmic Inertia, I’ve dropped the price of it as much as I can, down to $6.83 if you buy it at Lulu.com. Also, Lulu is offering 50% off shipping costs through February 25th if you use the code DBS15 at check out.

You know, it’s funny. I was reading what I wrote for the book again, and upon finishing I had two distinct thoughts. The first one was, “I will never top this.” The second one was, “There is no market for this book.” That more or less sums up my writing carrer, I suppose. So, really now I need to figure out how to become more accessible. Easier said than done of course, but hopefully I’m not too old a dog to learn new tricks. So, watch this blog; a change is gonna come. (Here I go, into the unknown . . . )

And as always, thanks for reading :-)

The Old Lady Who Swallowed a Poem

This poem is based partially on the folk song
a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/There_Was_an_Old_Lady_Who_Swallowed_a_Fly”>”The Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly”
Written by Alan Mills and Rose Bonne.

*

There was an old lady
Who swallowed a poem.
What logic is this?
It’s easy to follow:

She swallowed the poem
To catch her words.
She swallowed her words
To catch her thoughts.
She swallowed her thoughts
To placate the world
That rendered its judgement
With no hesitation:

“You are but a woman
Who is well past her prime
It’s time to retire
Your trifling mind.”

Thus, she swallowed her words
And swallowed her thoughts,
But secretly with them
She swallowed a poem,
So one resurgent day
She could regurgitate
Verse out to the world
It needed to digest:

“Civilization would surely be lost
If wisdom– is swallowed.”

*

Copyright 2008, 2012 by Michael Marsters.
All rights reserved.

Love Is Blind, Part Two

Love is blind and so is hate;
Sometimes they’re hard to tell apart,
Yet whether or not you knew this fate
I’d still believe that you were smart,
For there’s nothing clever about being wise;
You must only say what we don’t recognize
As common sense
(Mere recompense
For being strange
In this day and age.)

*

Copyright 2013 by Michael Marsters.
All rights reserved.

Love Is Blind, Part One

He considered himself clear-sighted, as near to omniscience
as a mortal mind could construe. He perceived, uniquely,
the way the world was, unlike all the others (sheep, he
congratulated himself on calling them) who deluded
themselves with so many false conjectures. So, what
became of this Arrogant Man when he encountered the
Blind Man who knew the color of darkness?

Arrogant Man:
It must be a pity not to know a true image from a
false one, for all descriptions must mean the same to
you. Yet, you must have a sharper grasp of detail where
other senses presume priority.

Blind Man:
I do not claim to see more than I should see. I do,
however, endeavor to make large truths, as anyone
would, out of my small experiences.

Arrogant Man:
And I am sure you must abound with insights a sighted
man would not ever himself obtain. For one, you do
know the color of darkness.

Blind Man:
Is that not within your visual palette? Yes, I am truely
intimate with the dark, but you know it too: in the
deepest night, when your eyes are shut tight and
wheresoever light hasn’t the means to reach.

Arrogant Man:
However, it is not a permanent fixture of my vision–
merely a state rather than a feature, for the rainbow
does not contain an ebony stripe. Yes, my knowledge
of light, its prism, is imperfect, something any man
limited from a valuable experience should lament.

Blind Man:
What would you hope to gain? The only currency of
darkness is humility. And anyone who tries to reach
beyond his means can acquire it.

Arrogant Man:
But this is the greatest truth: your vision has no means
with which to overreach, toward neither sun nor void.
It is mired in its own unary spectrum. Who wouldn’t
weep at that?

This was the Arrogant Man’s gift as he supposed it:
pity against what could not be rectified. What he
did not realize was that he gave himself away, for
even the most Blind among us knew which of these
two men were the most hardened and unyielding.

“…and he who is stranded in his own self-contained
world, denies the brightness of others’ stars.”

*

Copyright 2013 by Michael Marsters.
All rights reserved.

Don’t Look Back

The less mature me of some years ago spent an unreasonable number of moments reliving the past, evoking it within my mind’s eye often in a vivid enough fashion that the temptation to alter and re-maneuver myself through these incidents gone-by became near irresistable. A common fantasy of mine required placement of my present self into a memory to engage my past self and help him via the magic of foresight uncommit lived mistakes and steer cleer of terrible situations. Perhaps this is a common habit. Perhaps not. I kept this part of me hidden in any case, though I wondered if all the time travel stories common to page, stage, and screen might have sprung from a similar wish-fulfillment as my own.

Nowadays, when I notice myself angling too deep into memories, I pull myself out. Best not to let these re-creations play out. Part of growing up, the slow transformation from maturity to authentic adulthood, the building of a life toward the pursuit of contentment, is accepting the long, grinding, rarely pleasant endeavor of integrating both the good and the bad (and sometimes the ugly) experiences of your life to create a whole, synchronous person out of those disparate and otherwise clashing parts.

It might be said that youth and impatience are flipsides of the same coin. All too often in the midst of the decades-long struggle to define our purpose and our character, convenience re-orients us toward our misgivings of childhood. It is difficult to be wrong when analyzing imperfection. “If only things had gone differently,” we protest, “I would surely be better off.” True. Our own mistakes and those of others can deny us a less obstacle-laden path forward. However, did these errors rob us of a more meaningful life?

No, every set of experiences poses its own counter-set of challenges, and substantial, personal efforts must resolve them. There is no road easy to the value of existence. Yes, a soul here and a soul there are born into privilege and have less obstruction to contemplate. Life can be unfair that way. However, the future will never bend for any of us. We are who we are, and we must travel with our own weight upon us.

Weight, it should then be said, becomes momentum.

*

Copyright 2015 by Michael Marsters.
Alle rights reserved.