Piece 5

GoetheThis is the final background piece before I begin posting journal-like entries.  Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe is another poet, artist, or may I say universal man, that had a great influence on me.  This poem, written a few years before his death, may be directed towards the young about ready to enter life and I find this piece to be quite poignant and wise.  This piece is a potential remedy or a solution to overcome my utopian day dreams, excuses, and aggravation with the general human momentum.  It is my intention and desire  that my journal-like writings lead to more consciousness  and action in the spirit of this eternal piece of wisdom.

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A Legacy

No living atom comes at last to naught! 
Active in each is still the eternal Thought: 
Hold fast to Being if thou wouldst be blest. 
Being is without end; for changeless laws 
Bind that from which the All its glory draws 
Of living treasures endlessly possessed. 

Unto the wise of old this truth was known, 
Such wisdom knit their noble souls in one; 
Then hold thou still the lore of ancient days! 
To that high power thou ow’st it, son of man, 
By whose decree the earth its circuit ran 
And all the planets went their various ways. 
Then inward turn at once thy searching eyes; 

Thence shalt thou see the central truth arise 
From which no lofty soul goes e’er astray; 
There shalt thou miss no needful guiding sign- 
For conscience lives, and still its light divine 
Shall be the sun of all thy moral day. 
Next shalt thou trust thy senses’ evidence, 
And fear from them no treacherous offence 
While the mind’s watchful eye thy road commands: 
With lively pleasure contemplate the scene 
And roam securely, teachable, serene, 
At will throughout a world of fruitful lands. 
Enjoy in moderation all life gives: 
Where it rejoices in each thing that lives 
Let reason be thy guide and make thee see. 
Then shall the distant past be present still, 
The future, ere it comes, thy vision fill- 
Each single moment touch eternity. 
Then at the last shalt thou achieve thy quest, 
And in one final, firm conviction rest: 
What bears for thee true fruit alone is true. 
Prove all things, watch the movement of the world 
As down the various ways its tribes are whirled; 
Take thou thy stand among the chosen few. 
Thus hath it been of old; in solitude 
The artist shaped what thing to him seemed good, 
The wise man hearkened to his own soul’s voice. 
Thus also shalt thou find thy greatest bliss; 
To lead where the elect shall follow-this 
And this alone is worth a hero’s choice.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Piece Four

LA at NightI have included two more poems composed by Robinson Jeffers below as I couldn’t decide which one I liked better.  Besides, the two pieces fit well together.  He has had a big influence on me…in that he confirmed my intuition and expressed himself, of course, with more eloquence, wisdom and force.  I have begun writing my journal-like entries, that by their very nature reveal the positive aspect of critical thinking.   I will begin to post after Piece 5 and as various sections are completed.  I don’t know where these journal-like entries will take me or this blog…perhaps somewhere else…or perhaps in a circular loop.  My hope is that it takes the form of the former…rather than the later.

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The Purse-Seine

Our sardine fishermen work at night in the dark
of the moon; daylight or moonlight
They could not tell where to spread the net, 
unable to see the phosphorescence of the 
shoals of fish.
They work northward from Monterey, coasting 
Santa Cruz; off New Year’s Point or off 
Pigeon Point
The look-out man will see some lakes of milk-color 
light on the sea’s night-purple; he points, 
and the helmsman
Turns the dark prow, the motorboat circles the 
gleaming shoal and drifts out her seine-net. 
They close the circle
And purse the bottom of the net, then with great 
labor haul it in.

I cannot tell you
How beautiful the scene is, and a little terrible, 
then, when the crowded fish
Know they are caught, and wildly beat from one wall 
to the other of their closing destiny the 
phosphorescent
Water to a pool of flame, each beautiful slender body 
sheeted with flame, like a live rocket
A comet’s tail wake of clear yellow flame; while outside 
the narrowing
Floats and cordage of the net great sea-lions come up 
to watch, sighing in the dark; the vast walls 
of night
Stand erect to the stars.

Lately I was looking from a night mountain-top
On a wide city, the colored splendor, galaxies of light: 
how could I help but recall the seine-net
Gathering the luminous fish? I cannot tell you how 
beautiful the city appeared, and a little terrible.
I thought, We have geared the machines and locked all together 
into inter-dependence; we have built the great cities; now
There is no escape. We have gathered vast populations incapable 
of free survival, insulated
From the strong earth, each person in himself helpless, on all 
dependent. The circle is closed, and the net
Is being hauled in. They hardly feel the cords drawing, yet 
they shine already. The inevitable mass-disasters
Will not come in our time nor in our children’s, but we 
and our children
Must watch the net draw narrower, government take all 
powers–or revolution, and the new government
Take more than all, add to kept bodies kept souls–or anarchy, 
the mass-disasters.
These things are Progress;
Do you marvel our verse is troubled or frowning, while it keeps 
its reason? Or it lets go, lets the mood flow
In the manner of the recent young men into mere hysteria, 
splintered gleams, crackled laughter. But they are 
quite wrong.
There is no reason for amazement: surely one always knew 
that cultures decay, and life’s end is death. 

Hooded Night

At night, toward dawn, all the lights of the shore have died,
And a wind moves. Moves in the dark
The sleeping power of the ocean, no more beastlike than manlike,
Not to be compared; itself and itself.
Its breath blown shoreward huddles the world with a fog; no stars
Dance in heaven; no ship’s light glances.
I see the heavy granite bodies of the rocks of the headland,
That were ancient here before Egypt had pyramids,
Bulk on the gray of the sky, and beyond them the jets of young trees
I planted the year of the Versailles peace.
But here is the final unridiculous peace. Before the first man
Here were the stones, the ocean, the cypresses,
And the pallid region in the stone-rough dome of fog where the moon
Falls on the west. Here is reality.
The other is a spectral episode; after the inquisitive animal’s
Amusements are quiet: the dark glory.

Untimely Encounter

You already promised your hand to another

certain in your heart he is the one

that there could be no other

Fly across the world to embrace

and promise everlasting love

~

But there will be those days and nights

when you feel alone even in his presence

Now we breathe the same the air

feel the same wind

see the same moon

hear the same drops of rain

wander along the same ocean

admire the same mountain peaks

~

Where ever you go I have been

Where ever I go you have been

A distant undeveloped haunting

so close yet so far

wondering what might have been

had fate and chance

intervened at another time

Fools Gold

Forged from the dust of death-star fire into this ephemeral form

 

treading on the surface of an eternal bottomless ocean above and below

 

death perpetually circulating from all directions

 

You succumb to the myth that Gold is land, security, power, wealth

 

bow to the pirates and board their ship

to become a slave or yourself a pirate

 

You expend your death-star fire to swab the deck and man the oar

 

or lash the whip to bleed others into submission

 

You drink bottles and bottles of rum to numb the pain

 

of being whipped or doing the whipping

 

that you burn your precious death-star fire to make your masters rich

 

or man a ship with no direction other than to steal Gold from others

 

Mutiny will not alter the course as you are still on the same ship

 

different masters and slaves

seeking the same Gold for fools

 

Summon the courage from the depths

as the storm approaches and the sea boils with offended anger

 

return to where you began before you boarded the run away ship

 

Burn your precious death-star fire and pay homage to eternity

 

Swim man swim

 

or drown with a smile

Higher Love

I have become rather discouraged as of late in the realm of Love in today’s modern era.  I listen to the lyrics of the top hits, or rap, or hip hop, or watch the latest music videos, and it becomes clear that man and woman don’t seem to know about the higher forms of love or at least the naive beautiful idea of those higher forms.  Some lyrics I have heard talk about slamming a bitch up against the wall and doing her doggie style embedded in a catchy beat.

There seems to be a premium placed on the guy that can bag as many women as possible, or at the other end of the extreme, the pussy whipped wimp that can’t see past his nose.  There are a few sculptures that my brother led me to admire while we were in Europe together that symbolize my ideas of a higher love better than words could ever describe.  I have shared a couple of these images here.

I have experienced forms of higher love although I will admit they are fleeting.  And I have also explored the depths of the dark barren side of pure lust and whoring which is what the pop culture breeds today.  But I was very encouraged to see a young woman post a song that she recently composed that I believe shows the idea of a higher form of love still exists even if it is rare to find.  I have posted her lyrics below and the link to her original post (by Evil Nymph).

secret-kisses

Verse 1:

A brush of the hand

A push on the shoulder

A quick stolen smile

What’s best to end this day?

 

 

Chorus:

No one shall know

If you wish it.

A secret kiss

Before we let go.

 

 

Verse 2:

Interlocking fingers

Head on the chest

Your face close to mine

What’s more to dream about?

 

 

Chorus:

No one shall know

If you wish it.

A secret kiss

Before we let go.

I’ll catch your arm

You turn around

A secret kiss

Before we go home.

 

 

Bridge:

A rainbow over us

We laugh for no reason

Stay silent

And feel our presence

 

 

Chorus:

No one shall know

If you wish it.

A secret kiss

Before we let go.

I held your hand

You hold my world.

A secret kiss

Before we go home

Hooded Night

At night, toward dawn, all the lights of the shore have died,
And the wind moves. Moves in the dark
The sleeping power of the ocean, no more beastlike than manlike,
Not to be compared; itself and itself.
Its breath blown shoreward huddles the world with a fog; no stars
Dance in heaven; no ship’s light glances.
I see the heavy granite bodies of the rocks of the headland,
That were ancient here before Egypt had pyramids,
Bulk on the gray of the sky, and beyond them the jets of young trees
I planted the year of the Versailles peace.
But here is the final unridiculous peace. Before the first man
Here were the stones, the ocean, the cypresses,
And the pallid region in the stone-rough dome of fog where the moon
Falls on the west. Here is reality.
The other is a spectral episode: after the inquisitive animal’s
Amusements are quiet: the dark glory. 

–By Robinson Jeffers–

Ever run across a person that is no longer alive that wrote poems or literature or philosophy that hits home?  I have had such experience several times…wish they occured more frequently…but most of those dead authors are from long long ago.  This guy Jeffers…lived and observed his surrounding not too far in the distant past…in fact he saw much of what we see today…except he was alive during the peak of our Empire. His life and poetry really hits home with me.  Perhaps because I spent much time on the California coast…in particular Pebble Beach and Carmel…where he built his own house with his own hands…and wrote much of his powerful poetry.  Perhaps because he was molded…like me to a lesser and more vague sense…by Ancient Greek and Roman thought.  Perhaps…because I believe like he did there is so much we can learn from nature and the inanimate…the immense concept of geological time…the “Inhumane” aspect of the entire vast and infinite universe around us.  I do rebel against this very very intelligent man and still hold out hope for mankind…but I fully disclose that I am both ignorant and naive.  Most of my senses say we aren’t going to make it.  I hope you enjoyed this short poem…he has lots more:)