WHY?

WHY?

Why do we do it, you and I, this poetry thing?

I guess that one explanation these days is that

someone, somewhere, will react, maybe make a

low cost pact with me to read a few lines, then

take up (or decline) the offer of more in return for

a Comment (or a Like). I’d say that’s a deal worth

due consideration; meanwhile, the nation waits,

patiently, for little to change.

 

Does the process really reveal what lies inside,

nursing its need to climb out, insinuate itself into

some kind of uncertain pattern for wannabe poets

and call it a message, a sign, a semi-conscious

fanfare for something that few will have seen was

required, just then, on time, on tap. I think I hear

an affirmative rap but the line then clicks as if

the signal’s gone and there’s no-one there to care.

 

Today’s cold snap has put me right off my stroke;

my usual chipping away at the coalface with a view to

reproducing a Rodin in an everyday solid fuel,

feels somehow short on romance and universality, so I

shall try to teach myself (beginning at the beginning)

why I pursue, blindfold and in shackles, in the way I do,

unfashionable reasons – usually sniffed at, infra dig.

 

And now I’ve started, I know I’ve just dedicated

an entire day to point my thoughts in this direction,

towards the inner jungle of loves and hates, likes and

unlikes, beliefs and creeds, fads and fancies,

prejudices and persuasions. I begin to feel a collage

of words – as is my habit – forming, pulsing but

pinch myself to remember that today is different;

I shout out, for the record, I want to know Why, not What!

 

Of course, I soon work out that there is

no answer to Why without pushing What to its limits –

What being the medium to explain Why. Why, as to

both question and answer, is pretty much dumb without What.

So how far have I got? Not a lot further but do I discern

a whispered prompt, or more like a mantra, mouthed

slowly, clearly, softly, ethereally, its message

mine for the taking, disarmingly simple?

 

I skate over echos of the close to obvious: the sheer

beauty of language, of words, the mode for conveyance of

tricky thoughts and notions, the learning of literary

litanies, potions. Meanwhile, the mantra ebbs and flows

and I struggle to hold it. Perhaps I should start with a

decanting of mankind’s and my ideals and desires, a

cocktail of core and raw tenets where the Why might reside?

And I must decide; no more What without Why.

 

 

So I say to myself that you need three good Why’s before bed –

then your head’s entirely free and, if there are more tomorrow,

so be it, there’ll always be room. Concerned about the gloom

gathering, I close my eyes and picture a river which is never

unseen, there is no darkness that it knows. I can teach how to

build a world that is as real as any, no flight of fancy; and

I know that if the skiff that I use daily is taken, I know how to

befriend the thieves and share it; and, if the river should run dry,

my third Why will be that I have the words to persuade the people

to walk with me and settle on fertile riverbanks once more.

◄ SILHOUETTE

JUST BEFORE SLEEP ►

Comments

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Taylor Crowshaw

Mon 27th Aug 2018 16:05

Really interesting thought provoking poem. Enjoyed it thank you..😃

I am lost

Mon 27th Aug 2018 14:04

At time we need not know why
We simply do as we do
Just so we could satisfy
The emptiness that makes us blue

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